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Google rumored to become Amazon Kindle Fire's fiercest competitor in early 2012

post #1 of 45
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Despite the fact that Amazon's Kindle Fire tablet is based on Google's Android operating system, sources within the supply chain claim Google plans to become the Fire's biggest competitor with the release of a low-margin own-brand tablet early this year.

Google will reportedly release a 7-inch tablet running Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich priced to compete with Amazon's $199 Kindle Fire, DigiTimes' sources claimed on Thursday. The device is expected to arrive in March or April of 2012.

"Sources from Google's upstream supply chain believe that Google, instead of Apple, may actually be targeting Amazon's 7-inch Kindle Fire as its major competitor," the report read.

However, Google Taiwan responded by claiming that it had never heard of plans to launch an own-brand tablet PC. But, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt did seem to suggest otherwise late last month when he said that the search giant would release a "tablet of the highest quality" within the next six months. Such a device would presumably fall under Google's "Nexus" branding used to identify flagship Android devices meant to model new software releases.

DigiTimes has lost some credibility in recent weeks after some of its reports were debunked by other publications. Pundits quickly cast doubt on Thursday's report, noting that reconciling a sub-$199 price with a "highest quality" tablet would be nearly impossible, especially without the content ecosystem that Amazon relies on to make money off the Kindle Fire. The Fire itself has hardly been classified as high-quality, as multiple reviews (1, 2) of Amazon's budget tablet, which arrived in November, have noted that the device feels much cheaper than Apple's iPad.



Android's answers to the iPad struggled for the most part last year, with the Kindle Fire representing the first high-volume challenge to Apple's tablet dominance. Amazon said last month it had sold "millions" of the device, while declining to provide specifics. One analyst estimated earlier this week that he believes the Fire cannibalized 1-2 million iPad sales at most in the December quarter. Still, the Fire's performance will likely be enough to propel it to second place in the tablet market after its first quarter of availability.

Apple has actually admitted that it doesn't view the Kindle Fire as a serious threat to the iPad. Company officials view the tablet as potentially fueling further fragmentation in the market because it's compatible with Android but the apps work with Amazon products. Such fragmentation would ultimately drive customers to Apple's stable platform, they said.
post #2 of 45
Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

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post #3 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

We have a winner here folks
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"In March we told you 2011 would be the year of iPad 2, and it is, but we're starting 2012 early." - September 2011

~Ireland

Such a true sig
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post #4 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

Get this guy a beer.
post #5 of 45
DigiTimes is all over the latest tech rumors these days.

Read: DigiTimes is making stuff up as fast as they can these days.
post #6 of 45
If you can't beat them... join the other lot

BTW, does Microsoft get $5 per Kindle Fire sold because it runs Android? Or does that imply to Smartphones only?
post #7 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

If Google approaches Samsung to create the reference design, It'll be called a Samsung Galaxy Nexus Flame or something. But wait.. why don't they just re-release the Galaxy Tab 7" that came out originally in 2010 and sell it for $99..
post #8 of 45
let's face it. Google's long term goal is to become Apple's fiercest competitor.
post #9 of 45
I don't think that google's actually goal is to become apple's competitor. It is a sideways requirement.

On the desktop they have no meaningful competitor because they make their money from ads on websites. As the main computing platforms go mobile though and the added ad dollars that can be extracted through tighter location control they are losing their only (excluding marginal sources) source of revenue because the mobile platforms limit their access to data and websites / apps strip out google ads.

So if they don't have their own very strong platform in the mobile space they will be finished within 10 years, or have to actually DO something to make money instead of leeching.
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you only have freedom in choice when you know you have no choice
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post #10 of 45
"Early next year"? Come on, AppleInsider, 2012 is THIS year already.
post #11 of 45
Hmm, a tablet version of their Nexus phones could be nice. The Nexus are supposed to help with fragmentation by providing a baseline for phones that year.
post #12 of 45
......
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post #13 of 45
Google is becoming more like MS, but slightly more entrepreneurial. But to date, Google (and peers) is still chasing the same rabbit(tablet) that Apple pulled out of their hat. Ironically, the one magic trick that I thought was truly inspirational was the Courier table from MS. Sadly, they couldn't get it right, so they gave up! Shades of Xerox/Parc during the early days.

That dear fans is why Apple(SJ) wins. They don't give up, they re-group, re-do, until they get it right. Vision AND Persistence is the hallmark of successful entrepreneurs (and a wee bit of luck).
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post #14 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by simtub View Post

If Google approaches Samsung to create the reference design, It'll be called a Samsung Galaxy Nexus Flame or something. But wait.. why don't they just re-release the Galaxy Tab 7" that came out originally in 2010 and sell it for $99..

imo Google is going to use Motorola. This is were I see a potential war forming up between Google and other Android manufacturers depending on how they play it. If Google use Motorola to dump high quality tablets with no margins whats left for other Android tablet manufacturers? They could maybe dump cheap tablets but if they go at the iPad level they are going to enrage other tablet makers.
post #15 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

The Fire itself has hardly been classified as high-quality, as multiple reviews (1, 2) of Amazon's budget tablet, which arrived in November, have noted that the device feels much cheaper than Apple's iPad.

Huh. I'd never considered that a $199 device would feel much cheaper than a $499 device before. Thanks for the insight!
post #16 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sandyf View Post

Google is becoming more like MS, but slightly more entrepreneurial. But to date, Google (and peers) is still chasing the same rabbit(tablet) that Apple pulled out of their hat. Ironically, the one magic trick that I thought was truly inspirational was the Courier table from MS. Sadly, they couldn't get it right, so they gave up! Shades of Xerox/Parc during the early days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by herbapou View Post

imo Google is going to use Motorola. This is were I see a potential war forming up between Google and other Android manufacturers depending on how they play it. If Google use Motorola to dump high quality tablets with no margins whats left for other Android tablet manufacturers? They could maybe dump cheap tablets but if they go at the iPad level they are going to enrage other tablet makers.

To the best of my knowledge MS never built a desktop or laptop computer and as Herbapou points out that by building a cheap tablet Google would effectively kill any incentive for other Android tablet manufacturers to enter the game.

For this reason I deem this report as crap... either that or Google is getting dumber by the minute.
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post #17 of 45
If apple insider stopped quoting digitimes, what stories would they have?

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post #18 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

DigiTimes is all over the latest tech rumors these days.

Read: DigiTimes is making stuff up as fast as they can these days.

Why not? Tech sites repeat everything they write. What a racket.
post #19 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andysol View Post

If apple insider stopped quoting digitimes, what stories would they have?

They've got Daniel...

Story: "Apple edges out Samsung in smartphone sales during the holiday quarter."

Daniel's headline: "Samsung Readying for Bankruptcy"

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post #20 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tipoo View Post

Hmm, a tablet version of their Nexus phones could be nice. The Nexus are supposed to help with fragmentation by providing a baseline for phones that year.

Too bad they don't. We also see that 12 month old Nexus do not even get software updates.
post #21 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

Google bought Motorola Mobility and makes Android based hardware.

http://investor.google.com/releases/2011/0815.html
post #22 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

Well they do own Motorola now so it's likely that this is just a Xoom 2 with a few Googly bits added in.

As far as Android crap goes, the Xoom isn't that bad. With the right marketing, people will be fooled into buying it and because it's Google it will even get good reviews regardless of the quality.
post #23 of 45
Don’t forget: in the Android world, a bullet point on a feature list is what matters, NOT the actual experience/usability delivered. Want a good camera, for instance?

“Highest quality” is obviously impossible when undercutting the already-cheap iPad, unless profits are tossed out. (Which Amazon did and STILL achieved only cheap, mediocre quality.) Or unless you slap on a contract that makes you pay the predatory carrier of your choice and raised the actual price far beyond the iPad.

BUT... try it this way:

• Highest Quality

Runs Flash Well This Time For Real Honest

• Smaller Non-Retina Screen To Unleash Ultimate High Octane Macho Power From Robots

See? Now this rumored future product immediately beats anything that Apple actually sells today! And rest assured, when the iPad 3 comes along, there will be another “Simon Says” awesome Android tablet that beats it hands-down! It will be a “future product," not one you can actually buy, but that’s no matter—it will have bullet points Maybe it will run Android 5 (unlike Android 4 devices, most of which will stop getting upgrades long before you pay off the 2-year contract).

Nonetheless, it makes sense that Google would want to compete with Amazon: their goal is ads everywhere—THEIR ads delivered by selling your demographics/habits. Anything on any screen that isn’t controlled by Google is a problem.
post #24 of 45
Amazon's Kindle Fire is as much a threat to Google's business model as Apple's iOS lines are. The Fire does nothing to contribute to Google's bottom line other than the occasional web site visit.

Google see the threat to its business model and is responding accordingly to both Amazon and Apple by competing with them.
post #25 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by island hermit View Post

They've got Daniel...

Story: "Apple edges out Samsung in smartphone sales during the holiday quarter."

Daniel's headline: "Samsung Readying for Bankruptcy"


Isn't accusing someone of being a serial exaggerator by means of a giant exagerration of your own a bit twisted?

Any fair examination of the facts makes it clear that what Daniel does is really very subtle. He rarely publishes anything that isn't (technically) factual regardless of the spin he may put on things.

He's certainly less biased and plays a lot closer to the facts than places like BGR, 9to5Mac or CultofMac, etc.
post #26 of 45
Love this part:
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post

... Smaller Non-Retina Screen To Unleash Ultimate High Octane Macho Power From Robots....



This should be on a TShirt as the definition of Android.
post #27 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Well they do own Motorola now so it's likely that this is just a Xoom 2 with a few Googly bits added in.

IT came by night and they called it GLOOM
post #28 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

DigiTimes is all over the latest tech rumors these days.

Read: DigiTimes is making stuff up as fast as they can these days.

If AI have to quote DigiTimes, I have a suggestion: Put a HUGE trash icon on the left side of the page. It's garbage hour! The only way DigiTimes gets something right is by accident. Waste of everyone's time.

What I want to see is a weekly discussion round of DigiTimes, Enderle, and Dvorak (for those who can't remember him, Dvorak's Apple articles pretty much invented both internet trolling and click whoring. A brilliant mind.)
post #29 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Isn't accusing someone of being a serial exaggerator by means of a giant exagerration of your own a bit twisted?

Any fair examination of the facts makes it clear that what Daniel does is really very subtle. He rarely publishes anything that isn't (technically) factual regardless of the spin he may put on things.

He's certainly less biased and plays a lot closer to the facts than places like BGR, 9to5Mac or CultofMac, etc.

Subtle?!

You must be reading some other forum.

Most often I can tell a Daniel story just by the headline. The reason: it's an exaggeration of the actual facts of the story.

I find it odd that you call me out on this and yet you have to use a qualifier,"technically", and then you use the word, "spin" while describing Daniel's prose.

... and a big Mac is a lot healthier to eat than dog shit.

Anyway... back to the show...
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post #30 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

On the other hand, Amazon isn't the paragon of manufacturing excellence either.

So it's just a race to the bottom at the bottom end of the tablet market. Let's see who can come up with the crappiest crap. Once again, US companies are staking out the lowest end of the market. At least here, the top end is owned by a US company.
post #31 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wovel View Post

Too bad they don't. We also see that 12 month old Nexus do not even get software updates.

Don't go lying now...I read somewhere that some Abrahamic sky dad doesn't like that.
post #32 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by island hermit View Post

... and a big Mac is a lot healthier to eat than dog shit.

Sounds like a headline from DED...
I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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I’d rather have a better product than a better price.
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post #33 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Well they do own Motorola now so it's likely that this is just a Xoom 2 with a few Googly bits added in.

Except Google doesn't own Motorola. They are still waiting regulator approval. Google cannot do anything before they get the official okay.
post #34 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post

Highest quality? From a company with zero years of hardware design & manufacturing experience?
That's like RIM declaring "Amateur hour is over".

Your point is well taken. But Amazon was in the same boat not long ago and the Kindle line is doing just fine. Let's not forget that Andy Rubin founded Danger, which was doing just a bit of design and manufacturing. By some standards, the Sidekick was innovative and a success.

Design and manufacturing are not that difficult. It's design and manufacturing at the same level as Apple (or even Samsung, Nokia, GE, GM, etc.) that is hard.
post #35 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by island hermit View Post

To the best of my knowledge MS never built a desktop or laptop computer and as Herbapou points out that by building a cheap tablet Google would effectively kill any incentive for other Android tablet manufacturers to enter the game.

For this reason I deem this report as crap... either that or Google is getting dumber by the minute.

Google COULD possibly pull it of. If they completely separated the hardware groups from the software group and publicly promised that they would never share information, other hardware companies would not be at a disadvantage (since Google doesn't charge for Android).

Of course, they probably won't do that, so your point is valid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by F1Ferrari View Post

DigiTimes is all over the latest tech rumors these days.

Read: DigiTimes is making stuff up as fast as they can these days.

Sure, but if they make up 100 stories and one of them happens to be right, they'll be screaming about their great prediction skills.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shock Me View Post

Amazon's Kindle Fire is as much a threat to Google's business model as Apple's iOS lines are. The Fire does nothing to contribute to Google's bottom line other than the occasional web site visit.

Google see the threat to its business model and is responding accordingly to both Amazon and Apple by competing with them.

Exactly. Since Fire doesn't buy into the Google ecosystem, Google gains nothing. In some ways, the Fire is even more of a threat since it's running Android so is comparable to other Android tablets and it's cheap - so Android manufacturers don't have a major price advantage.

When competing against the iPad, Android manufacturers always have price to fall back on. They lose that argument against the Fire. Plus, the fire has a very solid eReader ecosystem.
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post #36 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shock Me View Post

Amazon's Kindle Fire is as much a threat to Google's business model as Apple's iOS lines are. The Fire does nothing to contribute to Google's bottom line other than the occasional web site visit.

Google makes plenty of money on iOS (I believe iOS contributes more than half of Google's mobile revenues) so why should it be any different on the Fire?

The more mobile and tablet devices sold, the more people go online, and the more Google ads that are viewed. A rising tide lifts all boats.
post #37 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Prof. Peabody View Post

Well they do own Motorola now so it's likely that this is just a Xoom 2 with a few Googly bits added in.

As far as Android crap goes, the Xoom isn't that bad. With the right marketing, people will be fooled into buying it and because it's Google it will even get good reviews regardless of the quality.

Googly bits? I try to keep mine covered.
Remember: Eric Schmidt said he told Steve Jobs that he thought that if Apple got into the tablet business, they would fail because nobody buys tablets.

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #38 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Orlando View Post

Google makes plenty of money on iOS (I believe iOS contributes more than half of Google's mobile revenues) so why should it be any different on the Fire?

The more mobile and tablet devices sold, the more people go online, and the more Google ads that are viewed. A rising tide lifts all boats.

...But my point was that apps in both iOS and in Amazon's Fire do not rely as heavily on the web as desktop and laptops do and therefore minimize the profit Google makes. That means less money to develop Android with.

Google traded most of the potential profit in order to buy marketshare and critical mass quickly enough to blunt the rise of iOS.
post #39 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shock Me View Post

Google see the threat to its business model and is responding accordingly to both Amazon and Apple by competing with them.

Which business model? The one revolving around search which they gave up on years ago (seeing as they mastered that), and are now reinventing themselves as everybody else?

Or do you mean the Android business model which sucks money out of them faster than a hooker in Vegas?

Google's joined up thinking seems to be about giving away the Android business model, and then screwing over their hardware partners further down the road. In the case of Moto Mobile, it also seem to entail raping a dead body. Nice.

Samsung should stop being worried about Apple, and start worrying about their bestest buddy, Google.
post #40 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by tinman0 View Post

Which business model? The one revolving around search which they gave up on years ago (seeing as they mastered that), and are now reinventing themselves as everybody else?

Or do you mean the Android business model which sucks money out of them faster than a hooker in Vegas?

Google's joined up thinking seems to be about giving away the Android business model, and then screwing over their hardware partners further down the road. In the case of Moto Mobile, it also seem to entail raping a dead body. Nice.

Samsung should stop being worried about Apple, and start worrying about their bestest buddy, Google.

Why? Details please...and not some shot in the dark hoping no one questions your anti-Google paranoid conspiracy nutjob rant (or anything not Apple depending on the topic) due to the forum you're on.
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