Google X phone, tablet, spur speculation

With reports of a smartphone and tablet launching this spring, analysts praise Google's competitive drive

With speculation swirling that Google is preparing to come out with what's been called the Google X phone and a Google X tablet this spring, analysts say the company is pushing the hardware envelope.

For the past month or so, there have been reports and online talk about Google working on a new phone and tablet, both being dubbed Google X products from the recently acquired Motorola Mobility.

That talk heated up Tuesday after Google's quarterly earnings call . During the call with the press and analysts, Google noted that when it acquired Motorola, the mobile device maker had a 12 to 18-month product pipeline that they're "still working through." That schedule would likely have new products arriving in the spring.

Google could not be reached for comment at deadline.

If a Google X phone and tablet are in the works, and executives are looking at a spring launch, it's likely the devices would make their debut at the company's annual developer conference, Google I/O, slated for May 15-17 in San Francisco.

"This would be an ideal time to introduce X," said Rob Enderle, an analyst with the Enderle Group. "This will be a game changer for Google, but that doesn't mean it will be a positive one. There is a lot of risk here and that's why most vendors don't do it. However, this is one of the ways to advance and some of the greatest gains come from the big risks."

This wouldn't be the first hardware that Google has produced that is being met with a lot of anticipation.

For instance, while the products' features are as unconfirmed as their sheer existence, there is a lot of speculation that the devices would have gesture recognition capabilities, along with a durable and bendable screen.

"It's a big secret so far," said Jeff Kagan, an independent industry analyst. "I'm not going to say that this is going to be another homerun for Google, but it could be. They've had their failures, like the Nexus phone. But the marketplace is different now. It may welcome another phone ... If it's good, it could succeed."

What's important here, according to Kagan, is that Google continues to innovate and act like an entrepreneur.

"Google is taking its first steps into hardware and into a lot of businesses," he added. "They're in Kansas City with their high-speed Internet. They're into self-driving cars. You never know what Google is going to look like. They throw a lot of stuff into the marketplace. What doesn't work they pull. What works, they go with."

Kagan said it's key for Google to continue searching for the next big thing.

Enderle agreed, noting that it's good for Google and it's good for the industry to have a major company pushing innovation.

"Generally, if you want to push technology, you have to do it yourself," he said. "Someone has to blaze the trail. It could drive technology more quickly or the result could be relatively unreliable and hurt the firm's brand. The nature of the cutting edge is that the stuff is both more exciting and more raw."

Sharon Gaudin covers the Internet and Web 2.0, emerging technologies, and desktop and laptop chips for Computerworld. Follow Sharon on Twitter at @sgaudin, on Google+ or subscribe to Sharon's RSS feed. Her email address is sgaudin@computerworld.com.

See more by Sharon Gaudin on Computerworld.com.

Read more about mobile/wireless in Computerworld's Mobile/Wireless Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobilesmartphonesinternetMotorolatabletsGooglewirelessNetworkingsearch engineshardware systemsconsumer electronicsInternet SearchMotorola MobilityMobile/Wireless

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Sharon Gaudin

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?