All signs point to Google releasing not one, but two Android tablets in 2023. The question is, why is Google making a Pixel Tablet Pro at all?
For more than a decade now, Google and other device makers have been trying to make Android tablets truly competitive with Apple’s iPad. Whether these efforts were successful is up for debate, but Google itself had long since abandoned the Android tablet space. Even 2015’s Pixel C tablet was originally supposed to run on ChromeOS instead of Android, making the Nexus 9 Google’s latest tablet. designed For Android.
In some ways, Google made a lot of sense using ChromeOS as its first tablet experience. After all, Chromebooks can run Android apps and have a full desktop experience once you connect the keyboard and mouse. The Pixelbook has proven to be better than any other device to date, but the same can’t be said for Google’s latest tablet, 2018 Pixel Slate.
While the Pixelbook struck a perfect balance between laptop and tablet and was judged against other laptops/Chromebooks, the Pixel Slate was a tablet first against the iPad and even Android tablets. Without going into too much detail – you can read more about that saga our previous coverage — the short version is that the Pixel Slate failed to be a productive laptop and wasn’t even an attractive tablet compared to the cheaper iPad.
It even led to failure Google to cancel two other tablet projects those at work. Despite this setback, Google’s work to make ChromeOS tablets great eventually paved the way for the fantastic tablets available today. Lenovo IdeaPad Duet series.
Fast forward to 2022, and Google has multiple new visions for what a tablet can be and the role it plays in everyday life. On the one hand, Google noted that Android tablets often spend a significant amount of time unused. To give the home tablet a new purpose when idle (and keep it charged and ready to go), the Google Pixel Tablet can be docked, turning it into a smart display like the Nest Hub.
This review makes perfect sense for a more affordable iteration of the Pixel Tablet, designed for simple entertainment and smart home control. However, this has nothing to do with the availability of the higher-end Pixel Tablet Pro we’ve seen. multiple symptoms Google prepares with new evidence emerging regularly.
Based on the ‘Pro’ designation, we believe Google is once again trying to create a tablet ready for normal workday productivity. This leads us to Google’s second strategy for the future of Android tablets. Earlier this year, Google’s CTO of tablets, Rich Miner, shared a review Android tablets running with all-new apps and experiences made possible by the use of the stylus.
If tablets are really going to become this new device for people to be creative and productive, what new apps will benefit from people being able to work with a stylus right out of the gate? What does this mean for mobility on a tablet, not even on a laptop?
– Rich miner
For this purpose, Google told us The Pixel Tablet will be the first Android device to do so, supporting USI (Universal Stylus Initiative) pens. In fact, you will buy any USI stylus or rather than requiring an expensive, Google-branded accessory, use one you may already have from another device and use it with your Pixel Tablet, bringing high precision and pressure sensitivity.
More precise details of the tablet’s stylus support have yet to be leaked, but USI pen compatibility bodes well for the productivity-focused Pixel Tablet Pro, especially if Google and third-party apps are updated to make good use of it. Instead, it’s Google’s way of bypassing stylus support can keep costs down for the base Pixel Tablet model.
At the same time, in many of Google’s Android applications and even in Android itself, the company is making efforts to make the operating system more compatible with the keyboard. Google Docs and other Workspace apps are gaining useful keyboard shortcutswhile including the latest Android Beta release an impending feature this makes it easy to open a particular program with just your keyboard. Better yet, last week we even saw some notable progress on Android’s long-awaited work “desktop” mode.
Like my colleague Abner Lee reported in OctoberGoogle has made it clear to offer a good productivity experience for the Pixel Tablet by working with both in-house and third-party developers.
Between keyboard and/or stylus accessories and the beefed-up core features that a “Pro” device typically brings, the Pixel Tablet Pro is in a great position to serve as a showcase for where Google wants to take Android on big screens. The only question is, will this vision materialize in time for early adopters of Google’s upcoming device, or will other tablet makers catch on? Lenovo and Samsung there will be those who reap the benefits.
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