According to the New York Times, Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt recently talked up the tablet at a private party in Los Angeles. A guest at the party told the Times that the device would run Flash content and play games.
Other sources said Google is in “stealth mode” with publishers, trying to strike deals for books, magazines and other content. Schmidt reportedly said that “Google might not get it right the first time,” adding that it could take two or three years before either Apple or Google could nail the tablet concept.
Virtually nothing is known about the device itself, and it seems too soon to ask logistical questions like pricing and deals with wireless carriers. Still, the idea of a flagship Android tablet sounds enticing, as it’d be the most likely to attract app developers and content owners.
It was previously reported that Google is working on a tablet with HTC, based on the upcoming Chrome OS, which is essentially the Chrome Web browser as the entire operating system. The latest rumors, particularly regarding Google’s plans for content, would seem to run contrary to the idea of a Web-only Chrome OS tablet. But there’s certainly room for the Chrome browser to play a major role in whatever Google comes up with.
For now, Android is Google’s best bet to get into the tablet game, and Google might be best-equipped to take on Apple. It owns the operating system and, unlike PC makers, isn’t beholden to existing business models (read: pricey laptops). Google can be totally fearless and aim for a revolution with a touch screen tablet, just as Apple did.