The past month has been an up and down month for the relationship between Google and Samsung with much of the consternation being centered on Samsung’s new Magazine UX that was revealed during CES 2014. At the event, when Samsung announced several new tablet devices, they came loaded with a new interface dubbed Magazine by Samsung. The interface is quite a departure from the stock Android interface and appears much more closely aligned with a Windows Metro-style interface with hints of Flipboard present. Despite this issue, late in January the two giants in the Android space announced a 10-year patent licensing agreement amidst proclamations about the importance of collaboration and cooperation. Yesterday’s announcement of the U.S. release of the new Samsung tablets has once again stirred up the Magazine flap between the two companies.
New data released by Strategy Analytics today show the global tablet market continues to grow at a healthy pace with Samsung being one of the primary beneficiaries of that growth. Android continued to dominate claiming 62 percent of the market, although Apple’s iOS reversed a recent trend and managed to experience some growth as well during the last quarter of the year. Just during the fourth quarter, global tablet shipments hit 76.8 million units, an increase of 20 percent compared to the same period in 2012. For the entire year, shipments reached 227 million units, a year over year increase of 33 percent.
According to reports from Korean web site ET News, Samsung is ready to ramp up production of AMOLED displays in the 8- to 10-inch size for use in tablet devices. The technology, used primarily by Samsung and LG, has found its way into small devices like smartphones and large devices like televisions. However, the cost to produce the screens apparently made it prohibitive to produce them for tablet devices. With the tablet market growing by leaps and bounds and projected to continue and Samsung focusing on tablets during the coming year, it makes sense that the company is finally ready to crank up production of AMOLED displays for their tablets. ET News also notes that TV sales have been sagging a bit, so the addition of tablet production will help Samsung optimize utilization of the production lines in what may be some fortuitous timing.
source: ET News
Acer is ready to release refreshed Iconia tablet devices at CES 2014 next week. This year’s models include the 7.9-inch Acer Iconia A1-830 and the 7-inch Acer Iconia B1-720. The Iconia A1-830 is the higher end unit of the two with an aluminum back, 1GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage with an option to expand via microSD, and a screen running at 1024×768 resolution. The Iconia B1-720 comes with a 1.3 GHz dual core processor and 1GB of RAM. Both devices will run Android 4.2 Jelly Bean.
The Iconia A1-830 will hit the market for $149 while the smaller Iconia B1-720 will sell for $130.
E FUN is ready to bring some new tablets to the market during 2014 and at least two of them will be on display next week at CES 2014. The new devices are both quad-core powered tablets running Android 4.2 and will come in 8-inch and 10-inch sizes. The Nextbook 8 and Nextbook 10 will be on display during the event and E FUN indicates they will be available during the first quarter of 2014 for $129.99 and $149.99 respectively. Although not ready to make the journey to the event, E FUN also indicates they will be coming out with a 7-inch Nextbook 7 which will sell for $99.99 when it is released during Q1.
After indicating a desire to focus more on the tablet market in 2014, Korean sources are reporting that Samsung did reach an internal goal of selling 40 million tablet devices during 2013. This sets them up for 2014 when they hope to sell 100 million tablets. If Samsung succeeds in selling that many devices, it may help make their name synonymous with tablets instead of Apple.
Samsung appears to be ready to release at least four new tablets during the first quarter of 2014 as it continues its march toward mobile device domination. One of these devices is anticipated to be the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite (SM-T11) potentially being released the second week of January. The Galaxy Tab 3 Lite is expected to be a low-end tablet which a price tag to match, although we do not have any specs yet to gauge where Samsung things the low-end of the market is. Another tablet that may be close to release is the possible Galaxy Tab 4 with a model number SM-T331. Whatever this mystery tablet is, it is expected to come with an AMOLED display instead of LCD as part of Samsung’s initiative to switch over to AMOLED.
Rumors are also floating around that Samsung is interested in producing a Note series device with a 12.2-inch screen that could possibly trigger the merger of tablets and laptops as a viable category for most buyers. There is also some rumbling about a possible Android/Windows dual-boot device with a more traditional laptop size screen of 13.3-inches.
Just pick up a Nexus 7 in white? The Google Play Edition of the LG G Pad 8.3? Or how about just any smartphone or tablet? Well, Best Buy is currently holding a sale on select accessories for smartphones and tablets. The 20% off sale covers cases, screen protectors, Bluetooth keyboards, bags, chargers, and more. There are some great deals going on and many of the items would make a great gift.. for yourself! The sale is only online and runs through Christmas day. Head on over to the source link below to view what items are on sale.
Source: Best Buy
Android users sure want to take a bite out of that Apple. According to more than 90,000 Black Friday receipts from Android and iOS users collected by InfoScout, about 40% of them were Android smartphone owners that bought an iPad. This means that about 36,000 Android users bought an iPad. This is an interesting figure because it shows that although Android is an excellent experience on a smartphone, those consumers aren’t feeling the same way about it on tablets. And with the launch of the new iPad Air, consumers are certainly going to be driven to buy something new with excellent specifications.
Google, on the other hand, has yet to announce their plans for a new Nexus 10 or even a Nexus 8. While some would say it is really up to OEMs to produce great tablets, I would argue that Google needs to shape the tablet experience into something fresh with their Nexus devices. The Nexus line is nowhere near as popular as Samsung’s Galaxy brand, but it certainly is evolving into something mainstream.
Source: InfoScout Blog
Via: Cult of Android
Google rolled out some minor changes to Google Play today in hopes they will have a big impact for tablet users looking for apps that have been designed to take advantage of the larger format available with a tablet device. First, they have changed the default view to put the “Designed for tablets” list at the top of the page when a user visits the store from their tablet device. The setting can be changed back to all apps or games if a user would prefer that look.