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Summary:

The talk about Verizon and Google teaming up to make an Android tablet is fun to watch. Kevin pointed out something that I had forgotten from the CES this past January. Verizon was showing a tablet at the CES that runs on its LTE 4G network.

Verizon LTE Tablet

The talk about Verizon and Google teaming up to make an Android tablet is fun to watch. We know that a lot of companies are working on Android tablets, but it’s more interesting when the producer of Android teams up with a giant telco. Kevin pointed out something that I had forgotten from the CES this past January, that makes a lot of sense given all this tablet talk. Verizon was showing a concept “kitchen” tablet at the CES that runs on its new LTE 4G network.

The 15-inch tablet was packing the Nvidia Tegra for HD video playback, and was built by ICD. The tablet was dubbed the Vega, and while it didn’t seem to be running Android that could likely be an easy change with Google onboard. The integrated 4G LTE modem in the Vega was produced by Motorola, a big Android phone maker. Interestingly, ICD produced the Vega in partnership with T-Mobile in the UK.

Related research on GigaOM Pro (sub req’d):

With the iPad, Apple Takes Google to the Mat

  1. I think it more likely that the Ultra with LTE support would be closer to what could be coming down the pike, mainly because a 15″ tablet would be a beast to tote as well as expensive. The ICD Ultra uses a 7″ display – could hit that “sweet spot” in terms of size. http://convergeddevices.net/products/ultra.html

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    1. Agreed – I think anything that wants to compete in the iPad consumer space has to be equivalently portable, which seems to suggest the 7-11″ range. Larger than that and you’ve got a different category of devices. ICD pitched the Vega at CES specifically as a home-use device for families – the digital-age equivalent of the calendar on the fridge, etc.

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    2. Yep, if you are going around 15″ you might as well get an all-in-one and just plop it down cause you most likely don’t want to be hauling it around that much.

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  2. I’m more looking for something 10-11 inch that would be good for viewing comics on. My 7 inch Mimo monitor is to small for anything other than Instant Messaging

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  3. AJAX Engineer Wednesday, May 12, 2010

    Better hope they can get an actual polished product (not vaporware) out the door before Apple conquers the greater tablet market.

    I think iPad at 1.3 million sold and they are getting ready to unleash this bad boy to the rest of the world soon so they will sell a few more million by years end no doubt. Don’t think tablet market is bigger than the netbook market so how much leftovers will Apple leave on the table for scrappy Android copycats to scoop up is the bigger question here.

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    1. That’s actually an interesting question: which market segments are likely to be available to a delayed-release non-iPad tablet?

      -Platform devotees: people who are already ideologically devoted to Android or WebOS are unlikely to buy an iPad, but might be interested in a tablet for their own platform. Probably the smallest group overall, but the most reliable buyers.

      -Anti-Apple buyers: distinct from the previous category in that their motivation is not love of a particular alternate OS, but rather an ideological opposition to Apple’s stance on App Store control, Flash, or whatever. Other manufacturers can’t count on them as automatic sales, but they won’t need to be wooed away from the iPad.

      -Feature-driven buyers: interested in a tablet, and not notably ideologically opposed to the iPad or devoted to alternate platforms, but requiring some feature for their use case which is not currently available on the iPad: SD card, USB, camera, whatever. This is an interesting category because it is more susceptible to iPad poaching due to hardware revisions than the first two.

      -Bargain shoppers: love the iPad idea, but can’t afford the entry price. Competition among Android tablet manufacturers and against the iPad will likely drive prices down to reasonable levels for this group, although they are likely to sacrifice features along the way. Apple could also lower iPad prices and snare some of this group, but given their historical emphasis on premium hardware at premium prices, that’s a dicey proposition.

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      1. You left out the people who bought into the ipad and something else comes out that does more, so they then go and buy the new tablet.

        There are tons of non-Apple fanboys that bought the iphone because it was the best thing on the market at the time. As soon as a good Android phone come out they got rid of their iphone for that.

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      2. @Robert: I’d consider them a subset of the feature-driven buyers, but good point nonetheless.

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  4. I like the idea of a Google tablet, I just hate the idea of a cell phone provider/Google tablet. This means that the tablet will be subsidized like a phone and if you want to buy it outright it might cost $500-700. I’d rather have it in a store for $250-300 and the option to use a cell companies network. Maybe they’ll do what Apple is doing and make a regular version with just WiFi and one that works with a 4G network? I’d be ok with that. As long as I have the choice to buy a cheap version of it with just WiFi from Target I’ll be happy.

    Than again there is the possible HP tablet with WebOS that I might be more interested in. Or a tablet with Windows 7 phone. Blackberry might come out of no where with a tablet that people will be shocked about. The game is on. But I would hope the same idea above for all the tablets.

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