WSJ: Google to sell co-branded tablets on its own in 2012
It’s no longer a secret that Google is planning to seriously get in the tablet business this year, by releasing at least one co-branded device in collaboration with Asus. However, recent reports indicate that Google is actually thinking bigger than that and will most likely launch its own online store.
After trying something similar for a short while in 2010, when Google sold the Nexus One smartphone through its own online portal, the US-based technology giant will try to make a push in a market niche where things aren’t going very well for anybody other than Apple.
Before getting to Apple, though, Google will most likely set its sights on Amazon, the biggest surprise of 2011 in the tablet market. And what better way to win such a battle than enter it with your competitor’s weapons and try to defeat him at his best game?
Google will therefore most likely launch an affordable tablet, probably priced around $200, like Amazon, and launch an online store, to sell it and try to break even, or even make some profit from a seemingly pretty risk investment.
As you might imagine, this report is far from being official or confirmed in any way by Google, but the mere silence of the company’s spokespersons tells us that there is some truth behind the story.
It also has to be said that most of today’s rumors place Google’s Nexus tablet launch and online store release sometime around the launch of the next version of Android. If this proves to be accurate, we might have a pretty crazy summer, with Android 5.0 Jelly Bean, Google-Asus Nexus tablet, and Google’s online store launch all coming our way at pretty much the same time.
Google’s plans for launching an online store seem to suggest that the search giant is not only prepping a tablet release, but several. In fact, if the 7-inch ‘’Nexus Tablet’’ project, as it is known right now, will be handled by Asus, we can’t see why Google wouldn’t plan a device manufactured by Motorola, as well, considering that Big M has been purchased by Larry Page’s company (the transaction is still pending approval in China, but it’s pretty much a done deal).
Another possibility would be that Google’s online store will handle all Android tablet sales, including devices manufactured by Samsung, Asus (on their own), Lenovo, and other important names in the industry, but this scenario is still pretty unlikely.
For the time being, though, we should cool out all these rumors and speculations and concentrate on the present. After all, today’s Android world is not a bad place to be in, and, even though Apple still has the upper hand when talking about slates, there are more than decent devices running Google’s OS as well.