updated 11:45 pm EDT, Thu May 12, 2011
Acer, ASUS, Lenovo prep Android 3.1-based PCs
A number of top-tier companies are already lining up devices based on Android 3.1 and in some cases using Intel chips, industry tips maintained Thursday night. Devices are reportedly coming from Acer, ASUS, and Lenovo. The first two already have one or more Android 3.0 tablets on shelves, hinting that Digitimes' sources are referring to models shipping soon that would already have the new OS out of the box.
Google has already set an informal deadline for the fall by promising Ice Cream Sandwich, the next version of Android, for the end of 2011. Most of ASUS' tablets promised at the start of the year, such as the MeMO, have yet to ship and could get the upgrade early.
While ARM is still usually the preferred format, Intel was also coming onboard in earnest with Android 3.1, the contacts explained. Tablets based on Atom Z600 (Oak Trail) and Android 3.1 were supposed to be coming in the second half of the year, again from Acer, ASUS, and Lenovo.
In the interim, Google was said to be talking with Intel to extend its Chromebook lineup to more processors than just the dual-core Atom N570. Along with the Atom Z600, the upcoming Cedar Trail would also be an option for Chrome OS notebooks. These too would ship in the second half of the year.