Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ) will launch two Droid-branded, LTE-enabled tablets this month from Motorola Mobility (NYSE:MMI) in a bid to reinvigorate the Motorola brand in tablets, according to a CNET report.
Motorola Xoom 2
The report, which noted that Verizon and Motorola declined to comment on specifications, pricing or launch date, said Verizon will sell the Motorola Droid Xyboard in 10-inch and 8-inch variants. The tablets have been rumored on blogs for several weeks. A Verizon spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
"As we've previously mentioned, we're planning to bring several new LTE devices to market including two tablets," Motorola said in a statement. "We haven't made any official announcements in the U.S. but we look forward to sharing more details soon."
According to the report, the devices will run the Honeycomb version of Google's (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android platform, and will sport a 1.2 GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB of RAM, a 5-megapixel camera in the back and a 1.3-megapixel front-facing camera. The devices will feature Gorilla glass, are both thinner than a AAA battery and will have sharp corners similar to Motorola's new Droid Razr, according to the report. The devices are marketed overseas as the Xoom 2.
The Xyboard tablets will represent Motorola's second big stab at capturing the tablet market following the introduction and middling reception of its Xoom tablet earlier this year. Motorola shipped just 100,000 Xoom tablets in the third quarter after shipping 440,000 Xooms in the second quarter and 250,000 Xooms in the first quarter of this year. The addition of the Droid branding also indicates that Verizon will likely market the devices heavily along with its other Droid-branded devices.
Verizon launched the Xoom in February and promised an LTE upgrade sometime in the second quarter for customers who bought the device with EV-DO connectivity so. However, that upgrade did not arrive until late September and required customers to send their devices to Motorola to receive the upgrade.
Motorola's efforts to push further into the tablet market are notable in light of Research In Motion's (NASDAQ:RIMM) struggles in the area. RIM today said it will take a $485 million charge in its fiscal third quarter related to weaker than expected sales of its PlayBook tablet.
- see this CNET article
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