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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

January 27, 2011 at 10:59 AM

Google Android Honeycomb images: Your next tablet?

Here are a batch of screenshots that Google posted of “Honeycomb,” the new version of its Android operating system designed for tablet computing devices.

It looks like Android 3.0 is a big step toward a PC operating system, if your next PC will be a tablet.

The first Honeycomb tablet to go on sale will be the Motorola Xoom, which was unveiled at CES and will be available in late February. It has a 10.1-inch diagonal touchscreen, dual-core Nvidia Tegra processor and a camera that takes 5 megapixel stills and 720p video.

By summer there should be all sorts of Honeycomb tablets fighting for shelf space at wireless stores with the new iPad, Windows 7 tablets and Hewlett Packard’s Topaz WebOS device.

Google’s Honeycomb screenshots show new features of the system, but device makers may customize things so the final product may look different. The screenshots were released with a developer preview and tools released Wednesday.

Here is the new user interface designed especially for tablets:

home_hero1.jpg

The new tabbed browser, with improved zooming and a log-in feature to automatically sign into Google sites and sync bookmarks with Google’s Chrome browser:

newbrowser.jpg

New camera controls; there’s also a “gallery” application for viewing albums:

cameracontrols.jpg

Developers can build better home screen widgets, with tools for flipping through 3D stacks of content, and touch gestures to scroll and flip through content:

widgets.jpg

Google redesigned the Android keyboard for the larger screens of tablets (versus phones, which Android initially targeted). The system also lets users select words by pressing the screen, then dragging little handles (“bounding arrows”) to highlight a text block:

newkeyboard.jpg

Here’s the Xoom image Motorola released a few weeks ago. Word on the street is that this will cost $800, without a phone plan attached:

XOOM_dyn_L_horiz_YouTube_CES-1.jpg

Lastly, here’s the Google Honeycomb preview video released earlier:

Comments | Topics: Android, android 3.0, ces

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