Eric Schmidt Hints at Google Tablet during LA Party

According to an article in the New York Times, Google CEO Eric Schmidt recently hinted to friends at an LA party that Google is working on their own tablet running the Android operating system.

With the relatively slow adoption rate of the Google phone Nexus One, one has to wonder why Google would want to venture into producing its own hardware again. Of course the tablet market and the phone market are two different creatures so perhaps the challenges Google is facing in getting people to give up their iPhones won’t be as pronounced with the tablet.

From a marketing perspective this could be very interesting. Mobile advertising is still in its infancy and who will control this lucrative advertising sector is still unclear. Apple’s new ad network iAd is poised to be the 800 pound gorilla and with iPhone penetration at all time highs and iPad sales through the roof, Apple may win by default.

Google also has legal hurdles to overcome from the FTC regarding its acquisition of mobile advertising platform AdMob. These hurdles and future anti-competitive concerns from the FTC could cripple Google in the mobile ad space.

For me this seems to be stacking up to be one interesting fight. On one hand you have Apple pretty much controlling the eyeballs in the mobile space and on the other hand you have Google with a ton of advertisers already in its network and years of experience running advertising platforms.

If Google can pull off providing their own hardware both with phones and with tablets we could be left with two capable and popular ad platforms for mobile, and as we all know good competition leads to great innovation.

  • http://www.trinityreversemortgage.com Justin

    I’d be quite happy to see competition between google and apple in the future with regard to cell phones but as I see it now, google is no where near apple’s i phone and is very little competition. I think it’s interesting that so many companies have tried to make a tablet computer and have it catch on, and nothing worked, and now apple sells out on its pre orders of tablet computers. google’s tablet computer may give the i pad a run for its money as long as its not a complete flop like amazon’s kindle

  • http://bryonsheffield.com Ironshef

    @Justin,

    Err…was it just a bit of sensationalism when you said “complete flop like amazon’s kindle”? While neither the Kindle nor the Kindle 2 sold 300,000 units opening day, I’m quite confident that you can consider neither a flop. No need to look very far for confirmation:

    Amazon Kindle Units Sold

  • http://www.googtablet.net Bruce Wood

    You made a comment about Google having to convince people to give up their iPhone. I don’t want a Google Tablet to replace my phone, I want it to be an alternative to being stuck at my desk using the computer. An iPhone does not have a big enough screen for me to sit on the couch for an hour and read through blogs like this one, but a Google Tablet would allow me to get out of the back room in my home and enjoy the comfort of my couch.

  • http://www.otrtiresupply.com Kurt

    My sense of paranoia is too great to actually buy a physical product from Google. Software is one thing. I can eventually give that up…giving them a unique, physical device id, that can never be uninstalled or changed…this is another thing entirely.

    Good idea for Google, bad idea for consumers.

  • http://www.crearecommunications.co.uk Luci

    I don’t think it would hurt Apple to have a little competition – but the Nexus One hasn’t even been released in the UK yet, so it’s hard to see whether or not people will be tempted by the latest alternative to the iPhone, and if/when it’s made by Google, the alternative the iPad.
    .-= Luci´s last blog ..SEO Tips: How To Write Promotional Content Without Overselling =-.

  • http://www.buyapc.org/ Jeremy Ashburn

    Even though tablet PCs are in their infancy I do believe that they will help transition print into the next wave of communication. I just heard an NPR article that said that as of May 3 Apple has sold a startling One Million iPads! This happened in only the first 28 days! They indicated that now 1 out of 300 Americans own the iPad and are showing it off to their friends. These stats are incredible. It’s obvious that the iPad is taking off.
    .-= Jeremy Ashburn´s last blog ..Apple Sells 1 Million iPads; Future 4G iPhone Debacle =-.