Seven-inch Google Tablet Slated For This July?

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined
as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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New speculation suggests an Asus-manufactured device is on its way

New speculation is suggesting that a Google-branded seven-inch tablet could begin shipping this June.

According to Digitimes, a source “in the supply chain” has told them that the Asus-manufactured device would have an initial shipment of 600,000 units.

The source said that the original plan was to ship the device in May, but that design and costs did not reach Google’s expectations and the launch was delayed until July to allow for minor adjustments. This would fit in with chairman Eric Schmidt’s suggestion in December that Google was working on releasing a tablet within the next six months.

Asus partnership likely

The involvement of Asus would be unsurprising, given its apparent close links to Google. It confirmed that version 5.0 of Android would be known as Jelly Bean and suggested that there was a high possibility that it would be one of the first to offer the update.

It has even been rumoured that Google was preparing to launch its own store to sell co-branded tablets directly to consumers in an effort to expand the reach of its mobile operating system. Android creator Andy Rubin has also said that Google will increase its focus on tablet this year, further increasing the likelihood of a Nexus branded tablet.Android tablets have struggled to make an impact on the market-leading Apple iPad, and it has been suggested that it would take on Apple’s tablet, but would instead focus on Amazon’s phenomenally successful Kindle Fire.

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