Article Diary - General Knowledge Digest

Motorola Xoom Tablet with Android 3.0 Honeycomb OS

Motorola’s press conference today was likely one of the biggest moments of the entire week. The Motorola Xoom, one of the first tablets to run on Google’s Android 3.0 Honeycomb operating system, the first Android version intended for tablets was just unveiled at the Consumer Electronics Show here.

Verizon will be the Motorola Xoom’s carrier. After an advertising campaign that included some shots at the iPad and Samsung’s Galaxy Tab (which runs Android 2.2, not Honeycomb) while keeping the name and look of the device under wraps, the Xoom has finally emerged.

Visually, it resembles most of other tablets dominated by its HD multi-touch screen. The operating system seems far more advanced than virtually all Android 2.2 tablets currently on the market including Samsung’s Galaxy Tab and is, perhaps, the first tablet truly armed to take on the mighty iPad.

Motorola Xoom Specifications

  • Operating system: Google’s Android 3.0 (Honeycomb)
  • 3G coming in 1st quarter 2011; upgrades to 4G in the second quarter
  • Dual core processor with 2GHz worth of processing power
  • Front and back-facing camera for video chat and photos and video recording
  • HD widescreen (specs not yet available)
  • HD camcorder with 1080 playback
  • Adobe Flash Player 10.1 fully-integrated support
  • Web cam Google Talk
  • Launches 3G upgradeable to 4G
  • E-reader that graphically looks comparable to Apple’s iBooks
  • Accelerometer and gyroscope built in for better gaming
  • Maps app comes with 3-D graphic renderings of buildings when you zoom in Google maps and GPS built-in

Motorola Xoom is the only one running Google’s dedicated tablet OS among the nearly 80 tablets purportedly being announced at this year’s CES. All the other tablets announced are running Android 2.1 or 2.2, with promises to upgrade to Honeycomb down the road, but nothing to show yet. (The exception is the LG/T-Mobile G-Slate.) Honeycomb comes with full support for Adobe Flash, and of course an operating system designed to work with larger screens, unlike the current version of Android, which Google intended for mobile phones.

The Motorola Xoom tablet was unavailable for hands on time at the press conference, but PCMag hopes to get some one-on-one time with the Xoom tomorrow when the CES show floor officially opens.

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