Google-branded 7-inch Nexus tablet bound from Asus this May, claims DigiTimes

Google-branded 7-inch Nexus tablet bound from Asus this May, claims DigiTimes
Google has chosen Taiwanese electronics giant Asus to manufacture its first move in the tablet market, with a 7-inch Nexus-branded device expected to launch in May.

That's according to a report by DigiTimes, which claims Google is keen to target not Apple's recently unveiled iPad refresh, but rather the cheaper end of the tablet market, currently being led by Amazon's Kindle Fire.

The new Nexus tablet is likely to retail for somewhere between $199-$249 according to "industry sources", putting it squarely up against Amazon's $199 device.

Three become one

Interestingly, DigiTimes claims Asus was picked over rivals HTC and Acer, with the site's sources claiming HTC had a "strong design capability but insisted on directing development of the co-brand model and was unwilling to develop a low-price model to impair its brand image".

Acer, meanwhile, was reportedly unable to offer an in-house research and development capability for the device's development.

In contrast, it's claimed Asus is to use its newfound partnership with Google to "win Google's confidence" and strengthen its position within the Android ecosystem.

Strategy switch

Indeed, Asus' apparent partnership with Google represents quite a turnaround.

Back in November, it was widely reported the company had decided to halt development on all future Android tablets owing to the success of Amazon's Kindle Fire.

It was claimed Asus was reluctant to try and take on the low price of Amazon's device, with the online retail giant able to sell the hardware itself at a loss, driving profit instead from the tablet's software services.

[source: DigiTimes]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.


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