Will Motorola Beat Apple to a Retina Display Tablet?

Will Motorola Beat Apple to a Retina Display Tablet?

Despite recent claims that Apple will launch an ‘iPad HD’ later this year, any delay could mean that Motorola is the first to launch a high-resolution tablet, with one report maintaining that the company is already testing a prototype device with a 2048×1536 Retina display-like resolution.

According to a source for Fudzilla, Motorola may be abandoning the widescreen ratio of its Xoom tablet and replacing it with a 10-inch 4:3 format device, similar to Apple’s iPad, with a high-resolution display. The source claims to have “actually played with one” of the devices, which is said to be significantly thinner than the Xoom and powered by Android ‘Ice Cream Sandwich’.

While there are no details on its technical specifications, the report notes that Motorola works closely with NVIDIA, which could mean the device will pack the Tegra 3 Kal-El chip.

Fudzilla claims the device “might be out this year,” which doesn’t give Apple a great deal of time if it wants to be the first to launch a high-resolution tablet. Though there has been speculation that a third iPad, dubbed the ‘iPad HD’ or the ‘iPad 2 Plus’, will launch later this year, others have dismissed any possibility that Apple would launch two iPads in one year.

[via Electronista]

  • CharliK

    They likely will. 

    Why?

    Because Apple isn’t looking to use such a screen any time in the near future due to a lack of need and ill effects on performance. 

    But Motorola will jump on it as a “see we are better than the ipad” although it will cut battery life down a third to half or some such

    Then in 2013 when the alleged 1080p video testing is complete and there’s actually a nice collection and Apple has a brand new battery that can support such a display AND have up to 15 hours of battery life. They will release it. And it will be awesome. Whereas the Motorola one will have been dissed as a battery suck that wasn’t really necessary

  • prof_peabody

    “might be out this year” == “I don’t know when it will be available.” 

  • Tim Pease

    There goes the Android market philosophy again: Shoot first, ask questions later.  While Apple researches its target, implements the strike and basks in the glory of the kill shot.  Standing over the dying Android tablets, Apple says: Gotcha, don’t bother getting up again.

  • 300AShareMakesMeSmile

    Who cares if they do beat Apple with a high-resolution display?  That company knows next to nothing about selling mobile devices.  The stock price of MMI is already in the toilet.  In less than a year, flush with cash, the company has managed to shed about 40% of its share price.  Shareholders don’t need to be with a company that throws away money like that.

    So what if Motorola Xoom beats Apple on one feature.  I doubt that would even double Xoom sales.  It’ll just add to the cost and the benefits will be next to none.  I’d say Motorola should stick to improving its lousy Droid lineup to keep it somewhat competitive to what Samsung is doing, but what’s the point.  I knew Motorola didn’t have the savvy to compete against foreign companies in the mobile sector and that’s where is stands.  Motorola struggling despite using a free OS.  What a debacle, but par for the course.

  • William P. York

    To me, an iPad “HD” this fall *is* logical, even if the specs may seem prohibitively expensive.  First, remember that Apple generally does a good job of locking down hardware at reduced price.

    More importantly, remember the iPad 2 announcement and how 2011 is the “Year of the iPad 2?” Most thought that was definitive evidence that there will be only one iPad this year, but isn’t it odd that Apple would say such a thing?  Signaling 2011 as the “Year of the iPad 2″ to me would indicate that there may be an iPad 2 of another flavor (e.g. iPad 2 HD, iPad 2 Pro, etc.) this year.  Otherwise, why wouldn’t 2011 be the Year of iPhone 5 or MacBook Air or, even more logically, Year of the Lion?

  • Mike Prost

    upon reading this headline, my reaction is: does that even matter?

  • Mike Prost

    upon reading this header, my reaction is: does that really even matter?

  • baby_Twitty

    One thing really puzzling to me is this; Images and videos looks OK on the iPad 2.
    but everybody KNOWS (unless you suffer from lazy-eye syndrome or severe short-sightedness) that  text LOOK fuzzy on the ipad 2.

    The reason being iOS’ over smoothing of fonts on webpages.

    IF ONLY they could correct this giant flaw, then i believe sales of the iPad 2 would increase by  20-40%.

    I have PERFECT EYESIGHT and i’m extremely put off by the fuzzy text on iPad 2.
    So do many people and potential buyer of it. This is the BIGGEST weakness that Apple wants to deal with ASAP , hence the rushing of iPad 3/HD/Plus watever.

  • prof_peabody

    Uh, this is total nonsense.  Apple doesn’t “over smooth” fonts, there’s no such thing.  

    The iPad has a low resolution screen (about the same as a computer from the 90’s in pixel dimensions), that’s why fonts sometimes appear jaggy (not “fuzzy”).  

  • gareth edwards

    OK so here’s the question – do you want higher resolution or longer battery life?

    One thing is more important than the other for the majority of the market. Pro users like photographers would always go for a higher res screen if they can come up with a solution to keep the juice pumping but most people want battery life.

    If MOTO go for a higher res screen then the battery life will take a slapping UNLESS they poke a bigger brick into the case which then makes it perceivably less portable, which brings its own sales issues.

    No doubt MOTO will make a higher def screen as the mobile market is going spec batshit crazy at the mo because it’s one of the few tangible sales messages they have against the iPad.  Problem is, all this extra eye candy and horsepower comes at a price and when the group tests come around and this thing tanks at 4 hours the reviewers will have their knives out.

  • infin1023

    Good to have higher resolution !! But, is there any useful app to run under this resolution ?? Just wonder…

  • Evan Benford

    Aside from the fact that Steve Jobs said, “2011 will be the year of the ipad 2,” here are some other reasons an ipad HD WILL NOT come late 2011. 1) it will have to compete with the iphone 5, new ipods, and updated Macs for media attention leaving consumers to only buy one item at a time, 2) it will cannabalize ipad 3 sales as people will not want to drop another $500+ come 6 months from then, 3) Hardware requirements to keep performance and support that resolution will increase dramatically (quad core chip, 1GB RAM, and a much better battery)…weird they release a new quadcore in the ipad same time they put the dual A5 in the new iphone, not to mention costs , 4) Its just not something Apple would do. So yea…if im wrong ill be uber surprised but logic weighs heavily against an ipad HD (ugly name) in fall.

  • techgeek01

    I’m really looking forward to these next generation android tablets.  These current ones are great and these next generation are looking better and better each day.  :)

  • poppa1138

    when will Android bring out some apps just for tablets?

  • JDWages

    I agree with those who contend an iPad 2 HD would fall within the Jobsian proclamation, “Year of the iPad2.”  I am also of the opinion that it won’t matter who is first to market with a Retina Display, especially if Apple can give us “the better” display.  I am thinking of one that could be read as easily outdoors in bright sun as indoors under a lamp or dark room.  That kind of feature would please both camps — those who want high resolution (myself included) and those who maybe don’t care about resolution but who really want to read their iPad more easily when sunning themselves at the beach.

  • elimilchman

    Nicely put.

  • CharliK

    The notion of supply issues for this ipad 2 HD and the 3 is very valid and very possible. As is the ‘what would they do for the ipad 3′ question
    But mostly there’s the competition issue. The reason that Apple divides up releases is both to have something to boost quarterly sales so their announcements always sound awesome AND the logistics. A single device release is already chaos. A multiple device release at the same time or on top of each other would be beyond. 

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About the author

Killian BellKillian Bell is a staff writer based in the U.K. He has an interest in all things tech and also covers Android over at CultofAndroid.com. You can follow him on Twitter via @killianbell.

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