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Google Says Honeycomb Will Not Come To Smartphones

timothy posted more than 3 years ago | from the xda-devs-need-some-love dept.

Android 193

tekgoblin writes "Google has officially announced that Honeycomb will not be coming to Android based smartphones. Android 3.0 Honeycomb was specifically made for Tablets according to a Google spokesperson. Although, certain features that are present on Honeycomb will become available over time on Android smartphones. Google has not offered any information to what features will be ported over specifically." On the bright side, Honeycomb will come with disk-encryption capabilities built in.

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193 comments

Apple can do it... (-1, Flamebait)

mruizcamauer (551400) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097542)

iOS works on tables AND phones... is Android inferior?

Re:Apple can do it... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097572)

And IMO it doesn't do a very good job on either.

Re:Apple can do it... (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097582)

iOS works on tables AND phones... is Android inferior?

Android was smart enough to know that tablets and phones are not the same thing. Yes diesel and petrol engines are both essentially the same thing but you can't load diesel into petrol or vice versa. It defeats the purpose of specialization...

Re:Apple can do it... (0)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097750)

Just because it's the same code for both iPhone and iPad doesn't mean the UI is identical on both. It's not. Specialized UI, yet exact same code base. So your objection and claim of Android being smarter for that reason is false.

Re:Apple can do it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098022)

Except that iPad's specialized UI sucks for tablets.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098476)

That must be why the iPad is the #1 tablet.

What happened to all the good anonymous Slashdot trolls?

Re:Apple can do it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098076)

Please don't reply to ACs. It makes it seem that your signature is a lie.

Re:Apple can do it... (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098634)

I modded you troll based on your sig. It makes you sound arrogant and mean.
 
Just thought I should tell you.

Re:Apple can do it... (1, Insightful)

sortius_nod (1080919) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098010)

Your analogy is flawed. The workings of a diesel & petrol engine are essentially the same, just some minor adjustments between them. They still work on the same principles (combustion, rotating crank, pistons, etc).

iOS has a foundation that can move between phone & tablet, the UI is what changes. If Android cannot do this, then there's something wrong in the world of google. This is pretty much the final proof everyone needed that Android is massively fragmented.

Re:Apple can do it... (3, Informative)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098068)

There are not minor adjustments between the two. Diesel engines lack spark-plugs and are compression ignition, this is totally different than both Otto and Atkinson cycle engines. Dies-Otto does blend the two concepts but it is quite unlike both of its parents.

It seems your knowledge about android is as limited as your knowledge about engines.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098422)

Ohhh, "something wrong". It's one version of the OS. When is iOS 4.0 coming for the iPad? Never, of course. Just like iOS 3.2 was iPad only and never came for the other Apple gadgets. So obviously there's something seriously wrong with iOS. Grow a brain.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

bonch (38532) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098436)

iOS on the iPhone and on the iPad are the same operating systems but have different interfaces. Using the same OS allows for universal apps that seamlessly run on both. This is further fragmentation of the Android platform.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

MadnessASAP (1052274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098812)

Bet you it wont, Honeycomb is still going to have the Dalvik VM and will still run all the old Android apps.

Re:Apple can do it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097592)

iOS works on tables AND phones... is Android inferior?

where is the rational sense? is Slashdot a kindergarten now? :)

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097706)

It's the same iOS, but some UI classes are only available on the iPad and some UI elements are slightly different on the iPad -- as they should be.

There's a clear delineation between iPhone and iPad. With android, there are 3" phones, 5" phones, 7" phones, 7" tablets. It's like being bi-sexual -- you like dick, you like vagina, you think you're doubling your options but you're really just creeping people out. Better for everyone if they decide to be a phone or a tablet and design around that.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098052)

Just like the computer market. All screens are the same size and all have the same resolution. Otherwise apps wouldn't run on all of them!

Oh wait...

Not at launch they didn't. (4, Informative)

pavon (30274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097710)

At launch the iPad was running a version of iOS (3.2) customized specifically for it, and this version never was released for the iPhone. Furthermore, when Apple released iOS 4, it wasn't compatible with the iPad. It was 7 months before they released 4.2 which was compatible with both. Google could very well be taking the same route here; getting things right on the tablet while continuing to advance the phones, and merging in a later release.

Re:Apple can do it... (2)

ducomputergeek (595742) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097818)

At my company we had to change our pricing for mobile application development. If our customers want iOS, the price is X and includes QA for iPhone, iPod, and iPad. If you want Android, the price starts at $X with the Nexus being the device that undergoes QA. Each additional platform (handset/device) they want a QA agreement on is an additional $X. On average this makes Android 3X more expensive as they'll want at least a motorola(Verizon), HTC (Sprint/T-Mobile), and Samsung handset tested and approved.

We'll just be treating the new tablets each as a separate platform for QA/billing purposes.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

Superken7 (893292) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097852)

iOS has not been optimized for tablets, only apps can make use of columns and similar layouts(and by the way, those ipad apps DONT work on iOS, or have you seen any column-divided app for the iphone?), the OS itself (notifications, multitasking, etc.) doesn't really make good use of the extra screen space.
Please have a look at the xoom demos. Done? Yes, now you can start wishing apple had done those kind of improvements like better notifications and expose-like UI for multitasking for the ipad as well.

Do you REALLY expect apps that are designed for big screens to make it to the smaller screens? I don't.

"certain features that are present on Honeycomb will become available over time on Android smartphones" - so what's the big deal? Even the ipad (btw, I own one and I like it very much in spite of my rants) got the *exact* same multitasking capabilities and UI about 6 months later than the iphone.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

mruizcamauer (551400) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097878)

wow, finally got first comment! :-) Forgot to say that iOS and OSX are likely to merge sometime in the future too, and are related technologies... but I suppose so is this Android with the other ones. Will Android ever run desktop/laptop/server computers?

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098006)

People have already run it on desktop/laptops. It does not make sense for a server, which are generally headless never mind not having a touch interface.

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

Stregano (1285764) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097922)

So, it makes you wonder why people own both when you could just have the iPhone Extreme Edition and make calls with Google Voice or something (I should work in marketting since I used to call it the iPhone XL, but Extreme sounds hip to the young kids, they will eat it alive)

Re:Apple can do it... (4, Informative)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097930)

no the article is wrong
i think the original article was written for pc magazine and has been rewritten on other sites.

http://www.bgr.com/2011/02/03/google-will-not-bring-honeycomb-to-smartphones/ [bgr.com]

UPDATE: It turns out there may have been a bit of confusion surrounding Kovacsâ(TM) comments at the Google event. Google reached out to clarify, supplying BGR with the following statement: âoeThe version of Honeycomb weâ(TM)ve shown is optimized for tablet form factors. All of the UI changes are the future of Android. Yesterdayâ(TM)s event focused on tablet form factors, which is where youâ(TM)ll first see Honeycomb.â

Re:Apple can do it... (1)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098802)

iOS works on tables AND phones... is Android inferior?

Tables? that's MS Surface.

As for iOS they have a tablet version on the ipad and a phone version on the iphone, just like Android will have.

Heh... Riiight... (4, Insightful)

Svartalf (2997) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097560)

They said the same basic thing about Tablets and the pre-Honeycomb versions of Android... ChromeOS was supposed to be for Tablets earlier on- and people went and did Tablets with 1.x and 2.x versions anyway to mostly good results. If there's not anything explicitly keeping it from being useful on phones, SOMEONE will do a phone with it.

Re:Heh... Riiight... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097612)

Calling pre-3.0 Android tablets "good results" is hilarious.

Re:Heh... Riiight... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098102)

I have an Apad running 2.1 and it is a fantastic device. Best money I have spent in a long time.

Re:Heh... Riiight... (1)

whoop (194) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098212)

And this is just Google's official stance. They won't certify any devices "with Google" unless they meet the criteria. Once the source code is out there, people will do what they want with it, port it to phones or whatever.

Official Stance (3, Informative)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098594)

And this is just Google's official stance.

Or not. As pointed out a couple other places in the thread, Google has since clarified, saying “The version of Honeycomb we’ve shown is optimized for tablet form factors. All of the UI changes are the future of Android. Yesterday’s event focused on tablet form factors, which is where you’ll first see Honeycomb.”

It is however (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097562)

Part of a balanced breakfast.

Fragmentation (2)

Trev311 (1161835) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097578)

So on a platform that (supposedly) is already rife with fragmentation they are going to have completely different versions just for tablets? How does this make any sense? I understand that tablets and smartphones have different uses and thus different needs, but really a completely separate version?

As an aside... What does this mean for smartphone android version numbers? Will it never get to 3.0? Or will it have a different 3.0?

Re:Fragmentation (1)

Servaas (1050156) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097626)

I don't get this either. Other then naming 3.0 something other then Android once its released how will this do anything but make things more complicated for consumers?

Re:Fragmentation (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097712)

Yeah,it'll be really confusing. You'd be like "I have a tablet..but I want to install phone software on it...but I can't....because it's not a phone....it's a tablet....so..let me get this right...I need to install tablet software on my tablet, but phone software on my phone? Someone help me out here? Why doesn't Google give them different names so that I know whether or not it'll run on my tablet?

Re:Fragmentation (1)

Servaas (1050156) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097802)

I realize that your trying to sound smart but I have Android running on my phone and tablet at the moment... So once I install 3.0 on my tablet they won't be the same any more and instead be treated as 2 independent entities? Weird that I would find that confusing.

Re:Fragmentation (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098152)

Just remember that if the app doesn't run on one device then it's probably meant for the other one. If you can't find it in the marketplace for your device then it's for the other one. If you get something running on one but it the app doesn't fill the screen, or you don't see the whole of the app on your screen then it's probably running on the wrong device.

I have a windows install, a couple of Ubuntus, an Android phone, an old Windows mobile phone. It's really not all that hard. If in doubt, check that what you're going to buy/install works on the hardware you own.

My phone is Android 2.2. I don't understand all this fragemention people are talking about. Am I supposed to be having trouble running software on it or something? What can't I do if this 'problem' didn't exist?

Re:Fragmentation (1)

Master Moose (1243274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097658)

They are going to have different versions for different tablets.

This way they will ensure as much market confusion as to what an Android Tablet is as they do presently with what an Android smartphone is.

Re:Fragmentation (2)

click2005 (921437) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097790)

If the instruction set and APIs are compatible it should make it no harder to create apps than it is for the Iphone & Ipad.

Re:Fragmentation (3, Insightful)

robmv (855035) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097808)

I think this is no different than iOS iPad version, Apple released a different UI than the one used on iPhone, with a lot of different APIs, then later both were merged when iPhone got a new iOS release. So Google saying Honeycomb is not for smartphones means, we need another release to integrate both, that makes sense to me

Re:Fragmentation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097822)

Exactly! Why fragment Android? Tablet edition*, is what Android phone edition*, will eventually become? How long are we talking about here? 6 months, a year? I've been waiting for native disk-encryption in Android since it's in inception. And honestly, this is one of the main reasons why I have yet to purchase an Android phone. And, when they finally add it, it's only for tablets? What is it with Industry leaders and fragmentation when it really isn't called for. What benefit does it provide to the dev. or consumer communities, by delaying Honeycomb features to the fastest growing cell market? Hmm... probably has something to do with vendors, carriers, control, and data snooping. Nah! That could never be it.

Re:Fragmentation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097826)

Probably this; even major version numbers for phones 2.x, 4.x, 6.x, odd major version numbers for tablets 3.x, 5.x, 7.x

or they could just put a T for Tablet or P for Phone at the end of the version number

Re:Fragmentation (4, Informative)

Zizagoo (1848812) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097856)

The Director Engineering said as much to TechRadar two weeks ago, so I'm surprised this is news. http://www.techradar.com/news/phone-and-communications/mobile-phones/honeycomb-may-never-come-to-mobiles-922897 [techradar.com] So Phones = 2.X, Tablets = 3.X, until Google reunite the number systems. According to the Dev blog post today, they're creating a Fragments API static library for use with phones going down to 1.6. http://android-developers.blogspot.com/2011/02/android-30-fragments-api.html [blogspot.com] so universal apps for tablets and phones can be coded.

Re:Fragmentation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098342)

Oh Fork!!

Re:Fragmentation (2)

TiberiusMonkey (1603977) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098532)

I know you might find this hard to accept, but Apple actually did this with the iPad. The first iPad version of iOS never hit the iPhone and iOS 4 wasn't available on the iPad at release. They slowly blended them together, which, shock horror, is pretty much exactly was Google is doing with Android.

Re:Fragmentation (2)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098580)

So on a platform that (supposedly) is already rife with fragmentation they are going to have completely different versions just for tablets?

One: Note the word "supposedly".
Two: Nope, they won't. While Honeycomb is for tablets, Ice Cream will be for phones (or phone/tablet convergence) has been previously reported, followed by the statement leading to the misinterpretation in TFA, Google has clarified [bgr.com], stating “The version of Honeycomb we’ve shown is optimized for tablet form factors. All of the UI changes are the future of Android. Yesterday’s event focused on tablet form factors, which is where you’ll first see Honeycomb.” (emphasis added)

Re:Fragmentation (1)

DeadboltX (751907) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098830)

I would rather have two vastly different operating systems with each tailored to the device it is supposed to be on rather than what Apple has done. An iPad is literally just a huge iPod Touch, the world doesn't need more of that.

Re:Fragmentation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098956)

I would rather have two vastly different operating systems with each tailored to the device it is supposed to be on rather than what Apple has done. An iPad is literally just a huge iPod Touch, the world doesn't need more of that.

Bullshit...

Re:Fragmentation (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098854)

It may be as different as Windows 7 and Windows 2008R2, basically the same thing and most stuff works on both, but optimised for different uses.

Then why call it Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097602)

Android as a brand is associated with smart phones. If the OS is not meant for smart phones, don't call it Android 3.0. Drop the Android branding and only call it Honeycomb.

Honeycomb for Tablets only (5, Funny)

TroZ (160902) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097630)

I guess that is because
Honeycomb is Big!
Yeah, Yeah, Yeah!
It's not small!
No, No, No!

Re:Honeycomb for Tablets only (1)

NitroWolf (72977) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098072)

Why the hell can't I have mod points when I really need them.

Awesome post. :)

Of course it doesn't (1)

Superken7 (893292) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097700)

Of course it doesn't, and I'm glad it won't. The UI has been adapted for big screens!

Notifications, fragments, new homescreen layout that makes better use of the extra screen space are only some of the specific changes for tablets. I hope everyone agrees that those changes don't make any sense for smartphones with smaller screens.

Note that they mention that new honeycomb features WILL make it to smartphones. So what's the news?

Some of those criticizing that Honeycomb won't make it as-is to smartphones probably only have dealt with iOS and the iPad. I have one and its a complete copy paste of the iphone, a big iphone for better and for worse. Don't get me wrong, I truly love my ipad.
You also have "fragments"/columns, apps are great. But the OS itself has clearly NOT been adapted for tablets. It works quite well, but iOS for iPad doesnt make good use of the extra screen space for multitasking. Displaying app icons instead of an expose-like UI? POPUP notifications? come on!! News like this sound like people would want the same for android.
Not for me, please!

Re:Of course it doesn't (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097862)

I have one and its a complete copy paste of the iphone, a big iphone for better and for worse.

One way or the other, you are lying. The iPad UI differs in many ways from the iPhone UI. It is not a "complete copy/paste of the iPhone". The code is exactly the same, but the UI is certainly not.

Re:Of course it doesn't (2)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098116)

Do a Google search for iPad. Look at the most common image for it (the one showing the home screen). Are you really trying to tell me that isn't nearly identical to the iPhone? The apps' UIs are the only thing different between the two.

Re:Of course it doesn't (1)

Man On Pink Corner (1089867) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098936)

Other than the fact that the iPad's desktop launcher supports landscape orientation, what are the differences? I can't think of any offhand.

Re:Of course it doesn't (1)

Albatrosses (1712146) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097938)

I have one and its a complete copy paste of the iphone, a big iphone for better and for worse

You're sure it's an iPad, and not another iPhone with a big magnifying glass glued to the front of it? I seem to recall the UIs being fairly distinct...

Android 3.1 WILL be available on phones GTFO idiot (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097704)

When did Slashdot become Engadget???

All you fucking poseurs who don't know shit about technology all of a sudden think your opinion is worth hearing just because the retards on Engadget are just as dumb as you.

Well we aren't, so shut the fuck up

You fucking retards wouldn't know real fragmentation if it cockslaped your sister's face into pieces.

Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (3, Interesting)

Voyager529 (1363959) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097760)

The following is a legit set of questions...

First, are tablet PCs *REALLY* the future of computing? I mean, PADDs were cool on Star Trek and all, but are they really more desirable than either smaller form factor laptops and/or the iPod Touch and its ilk on a grand scale? I realize that not everyone is like me and needs to carry around an 11-pound laptop everywhere, but despite the current iPad/Galaxy Tab craze, is it really likely that tablets will be the de facto laptop replacement in five years?

Second, and more relevant to the topic, what's the major difference at an OS level in Honeycomb that makes it ideal for a tablet that's either 1.) unsuitable for mobile phones, or 2.) optimized for a tablet? I can see things at the application level that could be different (a bleeding obvious example being the Office 2007/2010 Ribbon), and making apps optimized for a tablet sized display would yield different capabilities, the least of which being a little UI scaling so there aren't unnecessary empty areas where additional controls could replace cascading menus,but at the OS level, what kind of tablet optimizations would make the code so radically different from smartphones and iPod Touch clones that it deserves its own fork?

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097892)

At some point you want a real keyboard for one.

Secondly, it is a nightmare on your neck and back to try and use a tablet for a couple hours on end.

And, when you're used to having tons of screen real estate and multiple monitors, it is hard to be productive on a small, single screen.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

ducomputergeek (595742) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098090)

It's not that hard to pair a bluetooth keyboard with the iPad and suspect the same for the android tablets. You can even get iPad cases with a built in keyboard: http://www.thinkgeek.com/computing/keyboards-mice/e65a/?pfm=Carousel_iPad_Keyboard_Case_4 [thinkgeek.com]

I don't find using the iPad any better/worse than a laptop.

And if you're in a job/position where you need multiple monitors, then you aren't the target market for a tablet. But there are a lot more people out there who more or less need a calendar, email, address book, and the ability to maybe write up a document from time to time. For those folks, a tablet can easily replace a notebook.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098124)

1. My phone has both a real keyboard and will accept a bluetooth one.
2. The tablet can be placed in a cradle if you plan to use it for long periods.
3. There are many android phones with HDMI out. This means having a small screen while on the go and a large one at your desk are not at odds with each other. Multiple Monitors would require more HDMI outs, but that is not a huge limitation.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

exomondo (1725132) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098924)

3. There are many android phones with HDMI out. This means having a small screen while on the go and a large one at your desk are not at odds with each other. Multiple Monitors would require more HDMI outs, but that is not a huge limitation.

Phone resolutions are nowhere near the resolution of multi-display setups, in fact they can't even match one modern display yet. So i'd say that's quite a long way off, not to mention you'd need touchscreen monitors otherwise you'd have to be simulating touch input with a mouse.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (5, Interesting)

ducomputergeek (595742) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098030)

For most users the answer is "Yes, these are the devices of the future of computing".

I bought my iPad about a year ago. By July I stopped carrying a laptop. I didn't need it anymore and once I was able to get printing from the iPad, it did everything I needed at home and 95% of what I needed at work. I still have to dive into code/troubleshoot technical problems at work, but even that is getting less often. I still have an iMac there. I bought one of those bluetooth keyboard cases from think geek over christmas, but before that I used a docking station at home and the wireless keyboard at the office.

But as far as email, word processing, spreadsheets, and even presentations go, I can do all of that on my iPad now. Even our SVN hosting has an iPad/iPhone app that I can check bug report status messages, assign tasks, etc.. If Barebones came out with BBEdit for iPad, I probably could get away with not even having a computer at work. (None of the work I do involves compiling anymore).

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098340)

Don't extrapolate too much -- computing seems to be finally diversifying, and making the assumption that $latest_new_thing is somehow generally the best solution for most people in most cases is ... probably over-eager. Don't get me wrong, I realize Ipad is awesome for you and millions of other people: I just don't see any evidence to support the claim that they are the "future of computing for most users"

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (2)

Howitzer86 (964585) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098066)

No, tablets aren't the future of computing, just a part of it. All because I can make spreadsheets on my rooted Nook Color doesn't mean I want to. There will always be tasks you will want to keep doing on the PC.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098080)

I can carry a xPad/Tablet in one hand and use the other to control it like a clipboard. Laptop, not so much. So yeah, there is a need for a mobile computing device that isn't a "laptop" in a variety of places. The issue is can you model inputs to mimic that of a clipboard well enough to replace one?

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (2)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098120)

I have a tablet. And I used to think like you. Tablets would never replace laptops.

And I still think they won't. The thing is, I personally don't view tablets as 'small laptops' but rather 'large mobiles'. If you think of it that way, you get the clearest idea of what they're going to replace. You can't type as fast on a tablet , that's true. But if you want to read a document? Its brilliant. I can walk around, holding my Galaxy Tab in one hand, and I can sustain that for hours. I can watch videos on the bus. I can play games on it when I'm bored.

So no. Tablets won't replace laptops. But I think they'll replace Mobiles. Or rather fall in between. Carrying a 7'' tablet around is borderline. 10'' I'd say impossible.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098986)

Carrying a 7'' tablet around is borderline. 10'' I'd say impossible.

Don't say impossible. They just need to become lighter and foldable/rollable.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

alienzed (732782) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098166)

They are the future in the sense that most users don't need the processing power of a desktop in a portable device. The internet has made dumb terminals extremely useful again and a much smarter choice for financial and efficiency reasons. Why have a multi-gigaflop processor in a tiny device that you're not going to use the render graphics or the likes anyway? As far as Honeycomb is considered, I'm assuming the major issues are power consumption and overall architecture. You don't need your phone to do everything, just a few things really well, whereas tablets are the jack of all trades, and can fit that larger chipset and battery.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (2)

teadrop (1151099) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098250)

To answer your questions:

are tablet PCs *REALLY* the future of computing?

For us (i.e. /. people), no, . But for the other 90% of population, it would be a resounding yes. I have seen many non-IT people using computers and I have never seen them doing any task that exceed the capability of an ipad.

For years those 90% have been scammed into buying overpowering computers and thus brought down the average price of computing equipment so people like us would benefit. But that may not happen in the future...

A CALL OF ACTION: we should talk down the tablets so those non-IT people would continue to over buy their computing equipment so we can continue to enjoy the lower price of computers in the future...

For your second question regarding the difference between tablet and smart phone OS... they are pretty much the same other than scaling and positioning issues (smart phone is mostly one hand and tablet is mostly used by two hands...)

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

alostpacket (1972110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098312)

The real answer is that there is room for more than one kind of "computing." Some people update spreadsheets, others witch videos, some play Angry Birds. The most interesting part of all this is that while there has been some canibalization of laptops by tablets, there is also an expansion in this market so that some people own both. The market is growing to accomodate new devices. As for the UI scalling I think the reality of difference in what you can do with 10" screens vs 3 is vast. For some thing it certainly wont matter, but most apps will WANT to take advantage of the extra room to give the user a better experience. For example, look at the mail app on the Galaxy Tab as opposed to the one on stock Android.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098372)

Eventually, I think your computer will look a lot more like the electronic sticks with roll-out flexible screens from sci-fi, or even little devices that project a display and a laser keyboard wherever you need it. Until keyboards can be replaced with dwim altogether, that is.

But for the moment, yes, tablets / pads probably have a big role to play.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

theaceoffire (1053556) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098486)

1) There is about to be a ton of dirt cheap tablets. We are talking less than $50 cheap. It will be EVERYWHERE.

2) I think it was just to refute Steve Jobs who jabbed that Honeycomb was just "A phone os".

The future of computing (3, Insightful)

DragonWriter (970822) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098512)

First, are tablet PCs *REALLY* the future of computing?

No, they aren't the future of computing, anymore than any one of servers running could-enabling software, traditional laptops, smartphones and so on is the future of computing.

Like each of those other things, tablets are part of the present of computing that is bound to have a role for quite some time in the future.

is it really likely that tablets will be the de facto laptop replacement in five years?

No, its likely that tablets will replace laptops for some users in 5 years (and, for some, they already have) and that they will fill serve new roles that laptops don't currently serve for other users. The set of niches for computing devices to fill is not fixed with new devices competing over the same limited set of niches. When laptops were introduced, some of them displaced desktops, but more of them opened up new roles.

Second, and more relevant to the topic, what's the major difference at an OS level in Honeycomb that makes it ideal for a tablet that's either 1.) unsuitable for mobile phones, or 2.) optimized for a tablet?

The ActionBar and some other UI changes are pretty much the only tablet specific parts. Other bits may be more resource intensive and not appropriate for current smartphones, but I wouldn't be surprised to see all of the features make it into Android versions targetting phones eventually. (Probably many of the features will come to phones relatively quickly in Ice Cream.)

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098764)

Pretty simple, the OS layout is optimized for larger screens, better use of gadgets, rich notification bar, left side menu overlays, all kinds of stuff that just dosen't fit on a phone screen.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

jonbryce (703250) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098916)

They are not the complete future, but they will certainly play a part in it. I think you will see them replace some of the rugidised laptops used by field engineers. They will also be used as a sort of converged ebook reader / portable tv.

Re:Okay, can someone please break it down for me? (1)

zdepthcharge (1792770) | more than 3 years ago | (#35099024)

I don't think tablets are the future. let me explain it this way; I just bought a netbook because I want to be able to get some work done while I'm mobile. So not only so I have keyboard, but I have the same OS that runs the same apps I use when I'm at a desk. Someone can make the "It goes to 11" argument that you can add keyboards and mice, etc. But I've got it all in a 10" form factor.

Just a matter of time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35097794)

I imagine the tablet and smartphone versions will merge in time. Maybe even with the next release. This is just a short term plan to get a tablet optimised version out the door.

Not necessarily true (1)

SethD (42522) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097894)

The original source has been updated (see: http://www.bgr.com/2011/02/03/google-will-not-bring-honeycomb-to-smartphones/ )

"It turns out there may have been a bit of confusion surrounding Kovacs’ comments at the Google event. Google reached out to clarify, supplying BGR with the following statement: 'The version of Honeycomb we’ve shown is optimized for tablet form factors. All of the UI changes are the future of Android. Yesterday’s event focused on tablet form factors, which is where you’ll first see Honeycomb.'"

seems kinda redundent (1)

Ribbons Almark (1648843) | more than 3 years ago | (#35097946)

Ummmm..... Hasn't google been saying the Honeycomb is a TABLET ANDROID OS BUILD since it was first talked about. Gingerbread is the new shit for Android smart phones and HoneyComb is version 1.0 for Android Tablets.

nokia n900 phone has it already (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098018)

Aaaand the n900 community has already got honeycomb running on that hardware.

Google branded tablet? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098040)

If Honeycomb is for tablets, not phones, then Google can build an iPad competitor without pissing off it's phone partners.

Android is Open Source Isn't It? (1)

BBF_BBF (812493) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098060)

So if Android Really is Open Source, it really doesn't matter what Google says, because anybody who has the ability can modify Honeycomb Android such that it *will* work well on smartphones.

Also the fact that Froyo was *not* for tablets didn't prevent many manufacturers from putting Froyo on tablets.

However I do agree that without modifications, the base builds of Android for Tablets aren't optimal for Smartphones and vice versa.

Re:Android is Open Source Isn't It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098870)

Android is not fully open source. The proprietary drivers/middleware that your smartphone needs to work won't necessarily work with Honeycomb.

Officially announced? (1)

drb226 (1938360) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098122)

Google has officially announced...

Oh really? Where's the link to Google's announcement, then? I'm pretty sure that if Google "officially announces" something, it'll be on Google's blog, or the Android blog, or something. Enough with claiming "Official Announcement!" and then linking to some random second-rate blog...

Honeycomb is just the first 3.x version of Android (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35098182)

I assume this means that 3.0 is for tablets only, but 3.1 will run on both tablets and smartphones. They just haven't finished creating the small-screen version of 3.0.

Already Corrected (5, Informative)

mmurphy000 (556983) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098246)

If you actually get to the Boy Genius Report post [bgr.com], you will see that this statement has already been corrected, at least somewhat:

The version of Honeycomb we’ve shown is optimized for tablet form factors. All of the UI changes are the future of Android. Yesterday’s event focused on tablet form factors, which is where you’ll first see Honeycomb.

Incorrect (2)

vinng86 (1978262) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098282)

BGR, the source of this info writes:

UPDATE: It turns out there may have been a bit of confusion surrounding Kovacs’ comments at the Google event. Google reached out to clarify, supplying BGR with the following statement: “The version of Honeycomb we’ve shown is optimized for tablet form factors. All of the UI changes are the future of Android. Yesterday’s event focused on tablet form factors, which is where you’ll first see Honeycomb.”

In other words, they said it's going to be optimized for tablets first but did not specifically state that it won't be on phones.

Forget honeycomb (1)

kuzb (724081) | more than 3 years ago | (#35098610)

I'm still waiting for google to get it's ass in gear and release the update for the nexus one. Come on, google, you said it was going to be your damn reference hardware.
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