Things are looking up for Android’s tablet aspirations. Though the iPad is still the market leader, Android tablets are slowly carving out a space, to the tune of 4.5 million shipments in the last three months. That’s 26.9% of the worldwide market, edging up towards the iPad’s 66.6%. The growth is considerable, since not long ago the iPad made up a huge 80% chunk of sales.
Unfortunately a large percentage of Android tablets are still running on Gingerbread or Froyo, essentially translating a smartphone interface into a 7-10″ screen. According to Google’s latest activation and OS percentage numbers, only 3.4 million Android devices are running Honeycomb, despite a worldwide total of 6 million. Smaller, cheaper tablets are still firmly in the Gingerbread space, even for new offerings from the likes of ViewSonic and Velocity Micro.
But there’s hope on the horizon for cheap Android tablet everywhere in the form of Android 4.0. Ice Cream Sandwich features a scalable interface equally suited to smartphones and tablets, and according to Google engineers, the OS will be open-sourced by the end of the year. After that, it won’t be long before OEMs begin to make new tablets to take advantage of Ice Cream Sandwich, and the Android developer community won’t take long to get Ice Cream Sandwich onto current tablets of all sizes and price points. The upcoming Asus Transformer Prime is suspected to be the first commercial tablet with Ice Cream Sandwich.
Check out our hands-on looks at the Galaxy Nexus and Ice Cream Sandwich below:
Galaxy Nexus Hands-on
Ice Cream Sandwich Hands-on
Unfortunately a large percentage of Android tablets are still running on Gingerbread or Froyo, essentially translating a smartphone interface into a 7-10″ screen.
100 percent of iPads run iOS, essentially translating a smartphone interface into a 7-10″ screen.
And this doesn’t even include the massive number of Nook Colors or Kindle Fires.
Apple’s Android competitors outshine the
iPhone in the camera resolution and screen size department. Claw Digital Review says ,
Apple’s retina display is smaller than many slab Android phones but often
approaches or beats them in resolution. If Apple goes with a larger screen,
8-megapixel camera and full 1080p video recording, it’ll need more horsepower
to support all of them. The bigger screen, in particular, will also demand
more battery power. Apple’s been very careful about battery life (it’s why it
fought so long and hard against multi-tasking) and it may have to increase
battery size and capacity to support a larger retina screen.