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  1.    #1  
    So it looks like Blackberry and HP/Palm will be developing their own proprietary tablet operating systems. iOS for the iPad (and possible 7 inch version) has a significant head start. RIM is doing their Blackpad based on QNX which they acquired. Android is developing Gingerbread for a myriad of tablet contenders such as ASUS. Microsoft still has big plans for Windows 7 tablets.

    Anyone else think that the tablet platform field is getting a little crowded already? If all the user wants to do is run the native apps then that's no problem but it's hard to believe that most developers are going to support five different tablet platforms when they only support one or two PC platforms and one or two smartphone platforms.
    Last edited by UntidyGuy; 08/19/2010 at 10:27 AM.
  2. #2  
    I didn't know about Blackberry and QNX. Last I heard, the BlackPad was suppose to use Android.
  3.    #3  
    BlackPad to have its own OS, built by QNX? -- Engadget

    RIM Said to Plan Crusher Tank Technology for Tablet Computer
    By Hugo Miller - Aug 18, 2010 11:01 PM CT
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    RIM is racing to introduce its tablet as rivals debut similar devices, such as Apple's iPad seen here, that fill the gap between smartphones and laptops. Photographer: Tomohiro Ohsumi/Bloomberg

    Research In Motion Ltd. is turning to technology used in BMW audio systems and the Army’s Crusher tank as it tries to distinguish its new tablet computer from Apple Inc.’s iPad, said three people familiar with the plans.

    The yet-to-be-announced tablet will run on software developed by QNX Software Systems, which RIM bought from Harman International Industries Inc. for $200 million in April, said the people, who didn’t want to be named because the plans haven’t been made public. QNX’s software is used in products from companies including Cisco Systems Inc., General Electric Co. and Caterpillar Inc.

    RIM, based in Waterloo, Ontario, is racing to introduce its tablet as rivals debut similar devices that fill the gap between smartphones and laptops. By using QNX technology, RIM could take advantage of the independent software developers who already create applications for QNX and build on the popularity of its BlackBerry smartphone with corporate customers.

    “The iPad is very much a device for consuming,” said Alkesh Shah, an analyst at Evercore Partners Inc. in New York, who has a buy rating on the stock and doesn’t own any. “What’s not out there is a tablet for creating, for production.”

    RIM plans to call the tablet BlackPad, one person familiar with the company’s plans said in July. RIM acquired the Internet rights to blackpad.com last month, according to the Whois database of domain names.

    Marisa Conway, a spokeswoman for RIM, declined to comment.

    BlackPad’s Software

    QNX, with headquarters in Ottawa, has customers in the automotive, industrial, medical, and communications industries. Its software helps control the music, media and navigation systems in cars such as those from Bayerische Motoren Werke AG and Porsche SE, according to its Web site. The technology is also used in cardiac monitoring systems, nuclear power plants and weapons systems.

    The Crusher is an unmanned, six-wheel vehicle developed by Carnegie Mellon University’s National Robotics Engineering Center for the U.S. Army in 2006. It navigates with the help of a computer that runs on QNX’s Neutrino software.

    The BlackPad is designed to capitalize on RIM’s strength with corporate customers, particularly with e-mail service, one person said last month. The tablet will be closely integrated with the BlackBerry’s e-mail system and will have similar security for messaging, the person said.

    The BlackPad will include Wi-Fi technology so it can connect to the Internet wherever the wireless technology is available, including a home or office. When not near such Wi-Fi “hotspots,” people could connect wirelessly to their mobile phone with Bluetooth technology and then to the Internet. The device will not be able to connect directly to the cellular network the way some iPads can, two people said last month.

    QNX Vs. BlackBerry 6

    RIM is opting to use the QNX operating system to run the BlackPad over the new BlackBerry 6 operating system, which is used in the company’s Torch smartphone. RIM called the launch of the Torch and BlackBerry 6, which includes advanced touch-screen and Web browsing technology, “one of the most significant” in its history.

    The three people familiar with RIM’s plans did not know the specific reasons for the decision, though one person said it may have been simpler and faster to use QNX because the BlackBerry 6 includes legacy software code from older BlackBerry phones.

    Incorporating QNX software into its tablet computer may allow RIM to take advantage of the software’s broad use, said Ashok Kumar, an analyst with Rodman & Renshaw Inc.

    “As long as it’s a good-enough product, they should have a fighting chance,” said Kumar.

    RIM plans to introduce the tablet, which will be roughly the same dimensions as the iPad, in November, two people said last month. Hewlett-Packard Co., Samsung Electronics Co. and Motorola Inc. are also preparing tablets. Apple last month said it sold 3 million iPads in 80 days last quarter, eclipsing sales of its iPod music player.

    RIM rose 46 cents to $50.71 yesterday in Nasdaq Stock Market trading. The stock had declined 25 percent this year before today, compared with a 20-percent gain for Apple.

    To contact the reporter on this story: Hugo Miller in Toronto at hugomiller@bloomberg.net
  4. #4  
    You left out Intel and Nokia's Meego. Linux distros like Unity and Jolicloud ae becoming touch enabled as well.

    The best way to go is to shoot for HTML5-based apps, I think.
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by mikah912 View Post
    You left out Intel and Nokia's Meego. Linux distros like Unity and Jolicloud ae becoming touch enabled as well.

    The best way to go is to shoot for HTML5-based apps, I think.
    HTML5 would be grand if they could get all the HTML5 browsers to work the same. Look at the problems Pre users are already having with the new Facebook HTML5 update releasesd this week and not working.

    I guess most developers are making their HTML5ish stuff to work with iPhone IOS4 and everyone else is hit or miss?

    Reminds me of JAVA original 'write once and run everywhere' plan and how bad that went. Sorli
  6. #6  
    Forgot to mention using QNX back in the 90s and not going anywhere support or tech wise with what they were doing then. It has been a few years since those days and hopefully RIM has some better luck since their recent 6.0 offering has landed face first in most if not all tech reviews.

    Not a great start for RIM. Sorli...
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by mikah912 View Post
    You left out Intel and Nokia's Meego. Linux distros like Unity and Jolicloud ae becoming touch enabled as well.

    The best way to go is to shoot for HTML5-based apps, I think.
    More likely that most developers will target iOS and whatever the number 2 platform is (probably not Windows or 'BlackPad').
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by ADGrant View Post
    More likely that most developers will target iOS and whatever the number 2 platform is (probably not Windows or 'BlackPad').
    Developers already target iOS. It's a given because they're leveraging their smartphone success. Android is doing the same which is why they're seeing exponential growth in the app market.

    Everyone else is hoping everything goes the way of HTML5 web apps so it becomes all about the browser.
  9.    #9  
    As a developer, you would use HTML5 if you wanted a lot of compatibility breadth and you weren't worried about any competition. For example, the bank apps look the way that they do because Bank of America doesn't have to worry about a better BOA app coming out for any platform. However, any native SDK app will have better looking UI elements, will be more responsive, and can include all sorts of platform-specific features.

    From the platform standpoint, you would only want to rely on HTML5 if you were not planning on competing on rich or immersive app experiences. For example, I doubt that Citrix Reciever is going to be built using HTML5. It's been done for the iPad and will probably be ported to Android if there are enough of those tablets sold. The other platforms will have to achieve significant marketshare to warrant it.
  10. #10  
    I don't really think you'll see many Android tablets, at least ones worthy of purchase, especially with Google getting ready to drop ChromeOS soon. I think that's why Google hasn't pushed Android onto the tablet form, that's what they have ChromeOS for.
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by barkerja View Post
    I don't really think you'll see many Android tablets, at least ones worthy of purchase, especially with Google getting ready to drop ChromeOS soon. I think that's why Google hasn't pushed Android onto the tablet form, that's what they have ChromeOS for.
    Apparently, that aint stopping Verizon and HTC for going in big on one.
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by mikah912 View Post
    Apparently, that aint stopping Verizon and HTC for going in big on one.
    True, and it's a big gamble in my opinion. No access to the Android market, can only side load apps? No thanks.

    Not to mention that a vast majority of the apps found in the market look like crap on the larger resolution devices (Evo, DroidX, etc.) now as it is, I'd hate to see what they look like on a tablet form.
  13.    #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by barkerja View Post
    I don't really think you'll see many Android tablets, at least ones worthy of purchase, especially with Google getting ready to drop ChromeOS soon. I think that's why Google hasn't pushed Android onto the tablet form, that's what they have ChromeOS for.
    CES next year is going to be all about Android tablets. There was a blogger that was keeping track of upcoming android tablets and they stopped counting at over 30. Here's a listing a few of them:

    Archos 7
    Cisco Cius
    Velocity Micro Cruz Tablet
    Samsung Galaxy Tab P1000
    Dell Streak
    Notion Ink Adam
    ICD Ultra
    Pandigital Novel
    NEC Life Touch
    Google Tablet
    Acer Tablet
    LG Tablet
    ASUS
    Motorola/Verizon

    Did you really think that HP/Palm was being uniquely innovative when they decided to put webOS on a tablet? The webOS tablet, when introduced, will join a slew of brand new shiny tablets from just about every hardware manufactuerer in existence. It will have the smallest catalog of apps except for the RIM tablet.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by UntidyGuy View Post
    CES next year is going to be all about Android tablets. There was a blogger that was keeping track of upcoming android tablets and they stopped counting at over 30. Here's a listing a few of them:

    Archos 7
    Cisco Cius
    Velocity Micro Cruz Tablet
    Samsung Galaxy Tab P1000
    Dell Streak
    Notion Ink Adam
    ICD Ultra
    Pandigital Novel
    NEC Life Touch
    Google Tablet
    Acer Tablet
    LG Tablet
    ASUS
    Motorola/Verizon

    Did you really think that HP/Palm was being uniquely innovative when they decided to put webOS on a tablet? The webOS tablet, when introduced, will join a slew of brand new shiny tablets from just about every hardware manufactuerer in existence. It will have the smallest catalog of apps except for the RIM tablet.
    Yep, I just don't get it, unless Goole changes their licensing restrictions none of those tablets will be able to access the Android Market.
  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by barkerja View Post
    Yep, I just don't get it, unless Goole changes their licensing restrictions none of those tablets will be able to access the Android Market.
    Can you elaborate on that? I thought they could?
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by finngirl View Post
    Can you elaborate on that? I thought they could?
    In order to access the Android Market a device must have several key hardware elements, example: camera, bluetooth, gps, persistent data connectivity.

    Pretty much, if it's not a mobile phone it doesn't have access to the market.
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by barkerja View Post
    In order to access the Android Market a device must have several key hardware elements, example: camera, bluetooth, gps, persistent data connectivity.

    Pretty much, if it's not a mobile phone it doesn't have access to the market.
    I'm thinking the requirement that it be a phone to have the Android Market will go away with Android 3.0 since Google said that Android 3.0 "will be more tablet friendly" - a tablet is not a phone.
  18. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by UntidyGuy View Post
    CES next year is going to be all about Android tablets. There was a blogger that was keeping track of upcoming android tablets and they stopped counting at over 30. Here's a listing a few of them:

    Archos 7
    Cisco Cius
    Velocity Micro Cruz Tablet
    Samsung Galaxy Tab P1000
    Dell Streak
    Notion Ink Adam
    ICD Ultra
    Pandigital Novel
    NEC Life Touch
    Google Tablet
    Acer Tablet
    LG Tablet
    ASUS
    Motorola/Verizon

    Did you really think that HP/Palm was being uniquely innovative when they decided to put webOS on a tablet? The webOS tablet, when introduced, will join a slew of brand new shiny tablets from just about every hardware manufactuerer in existence. It will have the smallest catalog of apps except for the RIM tablet.
    Yep, it's a bit crowded. Especially for a market with devices i don't have much use for.
  19.    #19  
    LG Readies Tablet, Optimus Smartphones
    By ROGER CHENG And JUNG-AH LEE

    SEOUL—LG Electronics Inc., which was late to the smartphone game, said it plans to launch 10 more smartphones and sell five million devices by the end of the year in a scramble to compete with rivals.

    The South Korean company also plans to launch a tablet computer globally by the fourth quarter under its Optimus line, said Chang Ma, vice president of marketing for LG's mobile-devices unit.

    The first LG tablet, which will run on Google Inc.'s Android software, will set itself apart from Apple Inc.'s iPad by focusing on the ability to create content, rather than simply display it, Mr. Ma said in an interview.

    Mr. Ma said that the iPad is a great device, but he doesn't do much work on it. "Our tablet will be better than the iPad."


    The tablet will include content focused on creation such as writing documents, editing video and creating programs. It will also have "high-end features and new benefits," many of which will focus on productivity, Mr. Ma said.

    "It's going to be surprisingly productive," he said.

    The U.S. is going to be a key market for the tablet, Mr. Ma said, but he declined to comment on whether a wireless carrier would be involved with the distribution.

    LG stands in a precarious position. While still the world's third-largest handset maker by unit shipments, it has fallen behind in the more lucrative smartphone segment—part of a broader power shift away from traditional handset makers and toward companies such as Apple and HTC Corp.

    The company's share of the smartphone market was 1.2% in the second quarter, according to research firm Gartner. Its small presence has already hit the company. In July, LG's handset unit posted a 31% decline in second-quarter sales and swung to its deepest quarterly loss in eight years.

    Mr. Ma said he believes there is an opportunity for LG to catch up in the smartphone market. "The race hasn't started yet," he said.

    LG Goes With Nvidia in New Smartphones
    LG, like other handset manufacturers, has bet on Google's Android operating system to revive its fortunes. Starting in September, LG will relaunch its Optimus smartphone line with its flagship Optimus One through 120 operators. While the phone will be LG's flagship product, Mr. Ma said he intends for Optimus One to be a "gateway smartphone" for first-time customers.

    "We think it's reasonable for us to provide this to people who hesitate to buy or don't have enough experience with smartphones," Mr. Ma said. "This is a clear answer to them."

    Rather than one marquee device, LG wants to release multiple products to address varied customer tastes. The Optimus One, for instance, won't boast the impressive hardware specifications of some of its rivals, but LG plans to follow up with new models.

    The LG plans to launch devices using Nvidia Corp.'s dual-core processor in the fourth quarter. It also plans to be aggressive with fourth-generation, or 4G, technology, and build a phone compatible with long-term evolution technology by early next year.

    LG's aggressive moves, which include increasing the research and development budget by a third and ramping up spending on marketing, mean the handset maker's once-flagship mobile devices unit won't likely return to an operating profit until early next year, Mr. Ma said.

    "We have to just bear it," he said, adding that he hopes to see a turnaround after the fourth quarter.

    Write to Roger Cheng at roger.cheng@dowjones.com
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by cardfan View Post
    Yep, it's a bit crowded. Especially for a market with devices i don't have much use for.
    I don't think the tablet makers will notice your lack of interest.
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