An Army of Android Tablets is on the Horizon

by Matt Klassen on November 15, 2010

The tech industry has felt the rumblings for awhile now, but so far we’ve only seen a few select advanced scouts of the giant Android powered tablet army that is rumoured to be just over the horizon. With the iPad gaining a stranglehold on the tablet market, one might wonder where the rest of the Android tablets are. Shouldn’t companies be rushing the tablets to market in an effort to capitalize on the tablet craze?

The CEO of popular computer chip manufacturer Nvidia says the answer to that question is most assuredly ‘no.’ If Android tablets are going to have any chance of dethroning the iPad they will have to be ‘truly remarkable,’ Nvidia CEO Jen-Hsun Huang noted in a recent interview, and creating something remarkable often takes time, which is why Google, Nvidia, and tablet manufacturers aren’t rushing anything to market.

Further, Huang notes, consumer interest in tablets is not a fad, a craze, or a fly-by-night operation; instead, tablets are revolutionizing the communications and computing industries, changing the way people interact with technology. With this is mind, perhaps waiting a few extra months for extraordinary Android tablets to hit the market isn’t so bad after all.

While the tablet market offers little in terms of a reference points to gauge how ‘truly remarkable’ any upcoming Android tablets will be, the early release of the Samsung Galaxy Tab certainly has the tech world talking, and that’s the first of a veritable deluge of Android tablets set for release.

Although Nvidia CEO Huang was guarded when it came to specifics regarding devices, he did mention the fact that the army of tablets is en route, and the higher end ones will almost certainly be powered by the powerful Nvidia Tegra 2 processor. While the tech world has yet to get its hands on a Tegra powered tablet, early specification reports indicate that it will outperform anything currently on the market, and that includes netbooks and most notebooks as well.

It is entry, and subsequent dominance, of this latter market that Huang thinks will be the future of the tablet device. In a conference call Huang noted,

“This [the tablet] isn’t a fad. Everybody’s building tablets because it’s just so important. Car companies are working on tablets, consumer electronics companies are working on tablets, computer companies are working on tablets, and communications companies are working on tablets. The medical industry is working on tablets,” he said during the earnings conference call. “I don’t remember in the history of computing [when] a singular device is being worked on by all of the industry.”

So what can we make of all this? First, with the market still abuzz over the Samsung Galaxy Tab, Huang hinted that the army of Nvidia powered Android tablets will put Samsung’s tablet offering to shame, as companies are now experimenting with screen size, enhanced graphics processors, and tablet specific applications. For Huang tablets are not oversized phones, they are portable computing and communications stations. What this means is that with the tablet phones aren’t getting bigger, the powerful personal computer is getting smaller.

For me, however, the news that a veritable deluge of Android tablets is set to hit the market in the upcoming months adds considerable support to my ongoing theory that Android will never be able to construct one single device that rivals anything Apple produces. Instead, Android’s marketing strategy is, as always, quantity over quality. Will any of the impending Android tablets blow the tech world away? I doubt it, but we’ll have to wait and see. The Android army is on the march!

Photo c/o Daniel @ Daily Mobile Forum

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