Acer is planning to launch a 7-inch and 10-inch tablet PC in the fourth quarter according toÂ Digitimes. Both will sport ARM CPUs and run Google’s Android OS 2.2. These tablet PCs will go up against Apple’s iPad and tout its multimedia capabilities including the ability to run Flash. We all know Apple’s stance on Flash: not supporting Flash on iDevices. Flash 10.1 continues to crash my desktop browsers so hope it behaves better on mobile phones. I personally would like a Flash-free browsing experience where I don’t need any plugins to enjoy videos, graphics, etc.
There is no doubt many brands will enter the tablet market. Success will depend on an experience that matches or exceeds that of the iPad, providing the ability to easily purchase and consume media such as the App Store, iBookstore and the iTunes Music Store. According Phil McKinney, CTO of HP, and as reported byÂ Wired.com, HP is prepping a tablet called the HP Slate using Palm’s webOS. HP will be controlling the experience like Apple has with much success. McKinney:
If you look at success in the market, they are those companies who can control the end user experience and the entire experience stack.
HP is serious about controlling the experience as it purchased Palm for US$1.2 billion that closed earlier in July. Can HP control the experience and yet be open?
One of the main criticisms of the iPad is its closed ecosystem and so there will be a good portion of the market that will respond to a more open platform. Google’s Android OS seems to be the platform of choice but where can users get the media they want? Rumor has it Google is working on its own music store that will allow you to download and stream music. It won’t be surprising to see a seamless cloud integration with Google’s Android. You can find the juicy details on c|net.
Amazon’s Kindle app is on all mobile device platforms so no matter what you’re using you’ll see still be able to get your books, magazines and newspapers. I just replaced my Motorola Motoroi (I will be giving you an update soon as to my experience with my replacement brand-new Motoroi) and the Kindle app synced all the books that I had downloaded with the previous Motoroi. I think that’s what you can expect on any tablet that runs Google’s Android. Cloud integration will be a major strength for Android. There’s also solid options for video: Hulu/Hulu Plus, Netflix, etc.
Will 7-inch, 10-inch tablet PCs displace netbooks? Who is to know. HP is poised to target its Slate as a mobile device slotting below the netbook in size. Apple on the other hand has publicly announced that the iPad would replace netbooks. No one knows what will happen, but one thing is for sure: most if not all brands will do their best to market their tablets as the next big thing. Apple is already on its way to success. Who will be next?