Word has it Google is cooking up a 7-inch Android tablet of its own, and according to the latest story by DigiTimes, that tablet will begin shipping next month. The site quotes "sources from the upstream supply chain" who expect initial shipments of 600,000 units in preparation for a launch in July.
This isn't the first time we've heard about the device. Back in January, DigiTimes reported that Google was prepping a $199 tablet with a 7" display and Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich to compete against Amazon's Kindle Fire. (The Kindle Fire, of course, has the same display size and price tag, but it runs a customized version of Android 2.3 bereft of Google branding.) At the time, DigiTimes expected a launch in March or April. The site now says the release was "delayed to July for some minor adjustments" because "design and costs did not reach its expectations."
Google has reportedly teamed up with Asus to produce the 7" tablet. That's interesting, because we actually saw a 7" Tegra 3 tablet at Asus' CES suite back in January—and Asus went on to show off the device during an Nvidia presentation at the show. At the time, a $249 price tag was quoted. Lately, though, Nvidia has been teasing its Kai platform, which is supposed to enable $199 Tegra 3 tablets. Perhaps the upcoming Google device will be one of those.