Government // Mobile & Wireless
Commentary
12/7/2010
09:32 AM
Eric Zeman
Eric Zeman
Commentary
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Google's Rubin Demos Motorola Android 3.0 Honeycomb Tablet

Speaking at the Dive Into Mobile conference, Android chief Andy Rubin showed off a tablet computer made by Motorola running a new version of Android.

Rubin didn't say much about the tablet, though he did share a few specs. It has a dual-core Nvidia processor and supports video chat, meaning it has at least one camera. He didn't indicate what size the tablet's screen was, but it looks more like a 10-inch tablet than a seven-inch tablet.

Motorola's CEO has already confirmed that the company will debut two tablets in 2011, a seven-inch version and a ten-inch version.

The device showed off by Rubin was running Android 3.0 Honeycomb. He explained that, more than just a version of Android adapted for the tablet platform, Android 3.0 is a re-built variant of Android in order to take advantage of the strengths of the tablet form factor (i.e., the bigger screen).

Google has re-imagined the lock screen in Honeycomb, as well as redesigned the home screen, widgets, and other user interface elements. Rubin said that the software he demonstrated was still in the early stages of development.

Rubin used the tablet to show off Google Maps for Mobile 5.0. The new version of Maps for Mobile has some slick upgrades. The biggest of which is added support for device-side caching, which allows for offline use of Google Maps. In addition to local maps, Google will also cache navigation directions for offline user.

Maps 5.0 also adds 3D viewpoints and allows users to see the buildings and landscape of 100 different cities around the globe. The new version of Maps for Mobile hits the Android Market in the coming days.

Until then, enjoy this video of the Motorola tablet and a brief look at Android 3.0 Honeycomb.

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