Google, which competes with Apple through its Android operating software in the phone market, will launch its tablet on June 27 at Google I/O, the company’s annual event for developers. While tablets powered by Android are available for quite some time now, they have failed to dent the iPad market. According to figures from IDC, a research firm, Samsung, which is Google’s biggest hardware partner, had a global share of just 5.8% in the tablet market compared to Apple’s 54.7% in Q4, 2011. IDC estimates this year the total size of tablet market will be 106.1 million units.
“Google believes it has given its partners ample time to innovate and compete but they have been unsuccessful versus the iPad. Microsoft sees what its partners have planned for Windows 8 tablets and believes it must take the matters in its own hands,” said Patrick Moorhead, president at Moor Insights & Strategy, firm that advices computer hardware companies.
Google’s tablet, likely to be branded Nexus so that it can complement the company’s Nexus phones, will have a screen size of 7-inches. Google is also hoping to take on Amazon with its tablet. Amazon launched Kindle Fire last year at an attractive price of $199 in the US. According to IDC, Amazon shipped 4.7 million Kindle Fires in Q4 of 2011 to become the second largest tablet vendor after Apple with a market share of 16.8%.
While Kindle Fire runs on Android, the operating software has been heavily modified and is controlled by Amazon and not Google. Fire is the reason why Google may price its tablet at just $200 for 8GB version and $249 for 16GB version.