Where are all the "good" Android Tablets?

Wednesday, May 25, 2011, 10:32 AM


Good Android tablets seem to be MIA. Many big name companies showed tablets at the CES event in Las Vegas last January but have either put their Android tablet on hold or have removed it from their product lineup all together. One key reason could be that consumers aren't buying, and demand is really weak. Who can afford to sell something people don't want?

The biggest issues I see with current Android tablets follow. Consumers don't want one because manufacturers haven't given them much to want, yet.

1.                   Most Android tablets feel like giant phones.

Most of the apps are just “smart phone apps running on a bigger screen. Because the apps are originally designed for phones, the “wow factor is gone when you see it on a tablet. Sure, Angry Birds is bigger, but it's still the same game I can play on my phone. And, it is easier to input text on a decent smart phone than on a 7-inch tablet.

 2.                   People are still trying to figure out “What to use it for?

After the “geek factor wore off, I couldn't find many instances where I really wanted to use the tablet. I looked, but couldn't find many. I saw a TV commercial with a guy using his tablet while shopping at the grocery store; so I thought I would give it a try. I took the tablet to the store and was completely embarrassed. I felt like a big loser trying to use my tablet standing in the aisle. It was hard to type on, required both hands, and the data connection was slow. I could have done the same things on my smart phone and felt less dorky doing it.

3.                   Really it costs more than an iPad?

My first Android tablet cost $871.00! That is absurd. I know you can get an iPad for less. I know that the hardware for the “Mega Droid may be superior, but I've got to get value from it. You can't tell me that my new “Android Toy will cost more than a 42-inch flat panel TV.

If you can't beat Apple's price, you have no chance at beating Apple. 

 4.            Honeycomb is “the tablet OS

Most of the devices launched up to this point, have been running Android 2.x. Google has been very clear, that the 2.x platform was designed for phones. Google has tried to encourage manufacturers to “wait for Honeycomb but most just figured they would “upgrade when it comes out and took the plunge.  As of right now there have been very few tablets released running the Honeycomb 3.0 version of Android.

 5.            The low end stuff gives Android a bad rap.

There are literally hundreds of “no name companies pushing low end tablets and these tablets give the “real devices a very bad rap. The cheap $89 tablet you buy at the drug store does not truly represent the Android tablet market.

 Now the good news………

I don't want to sound like I think that Android tablets are slowing circling the drain or that they are all garbage. I actually see a bright future and an enormous amount of potential in Android tablets. There are some very promising devices just around the corner, these devices can easily be the “best tablets on the market. These devices have dual core processors, things like the “NVidia Tegra 2 chips with plenty of memory and beautiful HD screens. These devices are capable of taking full advantage of the Honeycomb operating system and can run applications that will make the tablets have a true “wow factor.

I just hope that they don't mess it up by thinking we will pay $800 for it, and they can get them launched before we lose interest and all buy iPads.