For tablets with form-factors of approximately 10-inches and larger (such as the iPad), Google says its best solution for this year at least is going to be Chrome OS. Chrome OS tablets are expected to launch this fall.
Some are looking to jump the gun and potentially try to get Android 2.2 "Froyo" tablets to market. Google says that it may disallow such designs the ability to use its Android Market app marketplace.
Hugo Barra, director of mobile products at Google states, "Android is an open platform. We saw at IFA 2010 all sorts of devices running Android, so it already running on tablets. But the way Android Market works is it's not going to be available on devices that don't allow applications to run correctly.
"Which devices do, and which don't will be unit specific, but Froyo is not optimized for use on tablets. If you want Android market on that platform, the apps just wouldn't run, [Froyo] is just not designed for that form factor. We want to make sure that we're going to create a application distribution mechanism for the Android market, to ensure our users have right experience."
While it may be disappointing to some that Google is not currently allowing Android tablets (by and large) to access the Android Market, it makes sense somewhat. After all, Apple, who ignited the tablet craze, has a dedicated section of its App Store exclusively for distributing iPad apps.
When it comes to app store bans, Google may go easy on mobile internet devices (MIDs) such as the Samsung Galaxy Tab. These typically 5-inches or 7-inch devices aren't quite phones, but aren't quite full-size tablets either. Samsung has said the 7-inch Galaxy Tab, which will soon launch on Sprint (3G/4G) and Verizon (3G only) will run on Android 2.2.
It seems unlikely that Google will deny Tab users access to the marketplace.
Samsung's head of mobile communications, J.K. Shin, also leaked some more big Android news at the IFA 2010 trade show in Germany. He revealed that the next version of Android following Android 3.0 "Gingerbread" will be Android 3.5 "Honeycomb".
Google reportedly will implement a more tablet friendly set of APIs for Gingerbread and Honeycomb. Samsung's competitor Motorola has already announced its intention to launch a 10-inch iPad-competitor with "Gingerbread" early next year. Likewise Mr. Shin says that 10-inch "Gingerbread" and "Honeycomb" tablets should arrive from his company next year.