Amazon Android Tablet Could Ship in 2011

Tue, 05/03/2011 - 23:41 -- Penelope Wang

Amazon's Kindle made a big splash in the world of portable e-readers, and Amazon is a household name when it comes to books, shopping and digital content online. With the recent launch of its own Android App Store, Android has made it clear it's staking out a claim in the mobile OS space. The competing Barnes and Noble Nook Color has been upgraded to a tablet thanks to Android 2.2 firmware, while Apple's iPad continues to fly off the shelves.

Android Amazon tablet in production

Enter the Amazon Android tablet, a device that's one step closer to reality according to a report from DigiTimes in Taiwan. Notebook maker Quanta Computer has already received orders from Amazon to build its tablet, shipping in the second half of 2011.

Quanta expects to build 700,000-800,000 units per month, adding $3.5 billion in revenues to its bottom line during the current year. The computer manufacturer, based in Taiwan, already makes tablets that compete against the iPad for RIM and Sony. Should the report be true, this signals that Amazon is serious about moving forward with its own tablet hardware.

Kindle for Android has been updated to work with Android 3.0 Honeycomb, and Amazon already launched its online services Cloud Player and Cloud Drive. Everything is in place for Amazon to make a killing by selling their tablet at a low price and integrating their existing retail and media businesses into the device. Combining a full color screen with an electronic ink display could provide the best of both worlds in a hybrid media tablet/e-reader device.

Analysts are optimistic that Amazon stands the best chance at the moment of making gains against Apple and the iPad 2. Until we see photos of hardware or receive more definitive information we're not going to hold our breath. What's for sure is that the Android tablet space has not even begun to heat up yet, and there will be more action before the holiday season in 2011.