With an update to its critically acclaimed Pixel line, Google announced that it plans to return to tablets. This was given in a way, with Android 13 focusing on improving the operating system with larger screens and different devices. The company also showed off its upcoming tablet scheduled for 2023.
It would be tempting to get excited for the Pixel tablet because Google is moving all over. It has Android 12L and Android 13 to take advantage of the bigger screen. It is working on rolling out updates to 20 or more of its mobile apps. It’s also working on Tensor, a custom chip that’s going to make Pixel tablets more like the iPad than before. So why do we feel a sense of doubt? Simple: Google has been directionless in both hardware and software, which makes it very difficult to believe it has any serious long-term plans.
fool me once
Dan Baker/Digital Trends
If I’m not impressed with Google’s newfound love for tablets and large-screen devices, it’s because the company is known for talking, but not walking. We’ve known for years that Android tablets suck because of their software. Sure, an argument can be made that the company can’t control third-party app developers, but how about its own apps?
That’s why the biggest point with me is the much-anticipated rollout of tablet-optimized apps this week. It seems like Google thinks we should be cheering for them, but it’s hard to imagine why. Android tablets aside, the company has been selling Chromebooks for the past few years, making them the ability to run Android apps and advertised as a killer feature. Why is Google proudly announcing right now that it has updated its apps to run well on the big screen? Has Google not noticed that it’s been selling $1,000 big-screen Android devices in its Google Store for years? Pixelbook Go? What did it mean when it announced with the Pixel Slate that it would bring “optimized Android apps” for a “no compromise experience”? It’s tempting to argue that Chromebooks don’t count as “big-screen devices,” but Google does count them and includes them in its numbers, so why did it take so long to build these apps in the end? Should have completed this already?
As someone who’s used too many dead-end mobile platforms to count, nothing is more familiar than the excitement of the company finally getting something important right. Nothing is more familiar than seeing that initial burst of passion. Google could very well keep up this momentum and create a suite of big-screen Android apps that will impress even the most committed skeptic, but it’s taken a lot longer than what’s been shown to prove it. It will take
Going Beyond Failure to Execute
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends
The big issue here is that it’s hard to tell what Google thinks “getting the tablet right” really means. It’s not just that Google has failed to execute, it’s that Google has consistently failed to draw a line on its most recent tablet efforts. Not in design, not in purpose, not even in operating system. Sure, Google May say That this time it’s for real, but it’s sticking to different and conflicting goals and stumbling every other year.
Does Google think tablets are as cheap as Amazon’s Fire tablets sell? Want a premium big-screen tablet because the iPad Air is so good? or is What should the Pixel C ideal tablet look like? Or perhaps, we want a full desktop operating system on a tablet like Microsoft’s Surface or Samsung DeX? Google doesn’t seem to know, and designing Android on a tablet to look like iPadOS doesn’t make this trend of reactionary, non-creative copying any less obvious.
Say what you will about Apple, Samsung, or Microsoft, but each iteration builds on what came before. You can pick up a Samsung Galaxy Tab S5e and Tab S8 and you can find out how one took to the other. You can look at the Surface Pro 3 and look at the Surface Pro 8, and the lineage is clear. The Pixel Slate and Pixel C look very different from each other, while Google’s Pixel tablet doesn’t look like it came from the Pixel team, but the Nest Hub looks like something more than a spare parts bin. Is there any confidence that a Pixel Tablet 2 will be teased this time around, or is it more likely that we’ll be waiting until 2025 for the next Pixel Sheet with Android 16 or whatever?
i leave you with it quote From Google hardware chief Rick Osterloh: “Google’s hardware team will be fully focused on building laptops going forward, but make no mistake: the Android and Chrome OS teams work long-term with our partners on tablets for all segments.” 100% committed to the market (consumer, enterprise,[education].” He said three years ago in 2019 the Google hardware team built exactly one laptop during that whole focus and never followed that up.[education)”Hesaidthatthreeyearsagoin2019DuringtheentiretyofthatsolefocustheGooglehardwareteambuiltpreciselyonelaptopandneverfollowedup[शिक्षा)।”उन्होंनेकहाकितीनसालपहले2019मेंउसपूरेफोकसकेदौरानGoogleहार्डवेयरटीमनेठीकएकलैपटॉपबनायाऔरकभीभीउसकापालननहींकिया।[education)”Hesaidthatthreeyearsagoin2019DuringtheentiretyofthatsolefocustheGooglehardwareteambuiltpreciselyonelaptopandneverfollowedup