updated 08:45 am EDT, Fri April 15, 2011
Android 3 tablet designers said delaying launches
Companies building Android 3.0 tablets are supposedly holding back on launches based on concerns of low sales and support from Google. Results for the Motorola Xoom were "lower than expected," according to rumors. Combined with Google's inability to help some partners, many have simply decided to wait before getting into tablets, Digitimes said.
Supply issues due to the Japan earthquake were considered only potential factors by the companies. They had heard that Motorola had floundered due to the relative lack of a strong brand image, high device prices, and the rushed state of Android 3.0 as factors. The Xoom arrived with just 17 apps in its first day where the original iPad started with roughly 1,000.
As an example of delays, ASUS supposedly pushed back the Taiwan launch of the Eee Pad Transformer by about two weeks to late April for the base 16GB version. HTC has also reportedly stalled the mass production schedule of the Flyer, although the company said its roadmap had been unchanged. The tablet reaches Europe on May 9, but HTC hasn't said in what quantities or narrowed down the launches for North America or most other countries.
Google isn't expected to confirm any sales figures and might not be joined by Motorola. When it confirmed that it was activating 350,000 Android devices a day, however, it downplayed the ratio of tablets in the mix and hinted strongly that the Xoom's portion of this wasn't significant enough to be a factor.
The launch of the iPad 2 is known to have caused chaos for a handful of tablet designers that had presumed Apple either wouldn't upgrade the iPad for awhile or would have no choice but to raise the price. Samsung had planned to charge a premium for the Galaxy Tab 10.1 but was pushed to match Apple to stay competitive.