Google engineer demos prototype Motorola Android tablet

Google's chief engineer, Andy Rubin, also demonstrated the next version of Google Maps

Google's chief Android engineer on Monday showed a glimpse of a forthcoming tablet from Motorola, a potential competitor to Apple's iPad with a more powerful processor.

A prototype of the Motorola tablet -- which comes with a "dual-core Nvidia 3D processor" and the tablet-friendly Honeycomb version of Android -- was demonstrated by Google's Andy Rubin at the D: Dive Into Mobile conference.

The Motorola device is running an early version of Honeycomb, which will be out next year and has been developed to work better on tablets, according to Rubin. Developers will be able to build applications that can take advantage of the tablets' larger screens but at the same time work on smartphones.

Google is also doing work on the user interface. For example, the Motorola prototype tablet doesn't have any hardware buttons. Instead, it uses virtual buttons on the screen that reposition when a user rotates the tablet in any direction. That's different from the iPad, which has a hardware home button that is fixed.

Rubin wasn't very forthcoming about the hardware specifications or when the Motorola tablet will show up in stores, only saying "it isn't due out for a while." Also, he didn't specify which Nvidia processor the product is using, but said "Nvidia really knows 3D and have been great to work with."

The use of a dual-core processor would likely make the Motorola tablet more powerful than the current version of Apple's iPad, but Apple could equip the next version of its hit tablet with similar hardware.

On the prototype tablet, Rubin demonstrated newest version Google Maps, which will be available for mobile phones in a matter of days, he said.

Aided by the tablet's 3D capabilities, Google Maps can display shadows of buildings as the user zooms in closer to the ground and then shows a 3D landscape as the user tilts the map. The new version is based on vector graphics, which are more efficient and use smaller amounts of data. The user can also download a whole route at once, according to Rubin.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags MotorolaGooglehardware systemsAndroidtablet PCslaptops

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?