Analyst That Predicted New Kindle Fires Announces Google Tablets
The device, which is expected to ship before the end of 2012, will feature a 10.1-inch display. Richard Shim, an analyst at NPD DisplaySearch, told CNET that the device could feature specifications that surpass the third-generation iPad. Shim expects the display resolution to reach 2,560 x 1,600 versus the iPad's resolution of 2,048 x 1,536. He also believes that the tablet will feature a PPI (pixels per inch) of 299 versus 264 on the third-generation iPad.
"It's going to be a high-end device," Shim told CNET, adding that Google will also produce a $99 tablet in December.
These predictions might sound far-fetched (particularly the claim about a $99 tablet), but Shim is no stranger to making outrageous predictions. In July he announced with an unprecedented level of confidence that Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) would build at least three new Kindle Fire tablets. He predicted that Amazon would build a cheaper Kindle Fire with a 1,024 x 600 display, an HD version with a 1,280 x 800 display and an 8.9-inch version with 4G and a 1,920 x 1,200 display. All three predictions came true.
At the time, Shim based his predictions on "supply chain indications." He did the same when making his Google predictions.
By releasing a high-end 10-inch tablet, Google could pose a new threat to Apple. While Hewlett-Packard (NASDAQ: HPQ), Research In Motion (NASDAQ: RIMM) and other manufacturers have failed to beat the iPad at its own game, Google might be the first company to take a sale or two away from Apple. Previously, only low-end tablets such as the original Kindle Fire have been able to compete successfully.
Even if the Nexus 10 is more powerful than the third-generation iPad, it will still be severely challenged by Apple's dominance. The Cupertino, California-based tech giant has sold more than 80 million iPads since the device was first released in 2010. Google may be able to steal a few future sales, but Apple will still likely dominate the tablet market in the coming years.
Google might have greater success if it chooses to release a $99 tablet, as Shim predicts. While that tablet is unlikely to be an ultra-powerful machine, it could still move mountains -- and experience massive sales. When Hewlett-Packard lowered the price of its ill-fated TouchPad from $499 to $99, the device flew off store shelves. Consumers could not wait to get their hands on the tablet. The device was so successful at that price that one Hewlett-Packard executive thought it should go back into production.
At the time, Hewlett-Packard could not make a profit selling the TouchPad for $99. More than a year later, Google and Samsung may have found a way to pull it off.
If so, expect this tablet to feature very few bells and whistles. It is possible that the tablet will be akin to the Galaxy Note II, whose 5.5-inch display is bigger than the four-inch screen featured on the new iPod Touch. This would make it a competitive alternative to Apple's popular device.
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