Google is going for Apple’s jugular by switching emphasis from smartphones to tablets. Is Apple scared? I doubt it. They will peddle tablets that are co-branded. Sources indicate that Google will sell them through a store much like Apple and Amazon. This is a last ditch effort to save struggling sales of Android based tablets. The question is whether or not it will work.
The Nexus One from HTC in 2010 was a similar flailing punch by Google, but they caved under the flood of better Android-based phones that hit the market a few months later. Google doesn’t get that having a piece of hardware with the search engine giants multi-colored logo on it makes it feel like a child’s toy – it cheapens it. Google is too full of themselves to get it though. I would never by hardware that has Google’s name on it. However, they have roped Samsung and AsusTek in on the deal of producing the hardware. So Google will not actually build the units, but they will be available from many retailers. In fact, Taiwan’s Asus is due to release the first co-branded tablet later this year, in the online store.
No one knows either when this store will be online or any specific details about it. However, Jelly Bean, the next version of Android OS is due to be out mid-year.
Of course, this decision to put its efforts into tablets is a result of the $12.5 billion pending Motorola purchase. It is a done deal in both America and Europe. They are just awaiting the Chinese decision.
Why is this important? Because Google will be marketing the tablets B2C. This is in direct competition with Apple. It has been two years since we saw the first iPad. I doubt Apple has much to worry about though. Gartner research firm put Apple at 73% and all Android-based tablets together at 17% of the market. Why should Apple feel threatened by Google’s infantile efforts?
Throw into the mix the Amazon Kindle Fire and there is no place for Google to capitalize on in the market. Amazon has the low end, Apple has everything else.
Google is taking a different tact with the mobile world. Most of its mobile money comes through selling ads. So Google will push its software products onto the Android devices more than ever. It’s like shoving them down our throats. I wonder what Google puke would look like. How colorful would it be? Granted, the mobile as sales is a miniature of the PC-based revenue, but with the up and coming tablet industry, Google might win a hefty amount of business there, charging more for tablet ads than phone ads.
Google claims that the aid of wireless carriers to push tablets on people has failed and was a flawed assumption that the smartphone revolution could be repeated with tablets. Since tablets are mostly used on home WiFi, there is no need to have the wireless carriers in between. That explains why Google will sell them from an online store.