Samsung Electronics revealed they were already working on a next generation tablet based off the upcoming Honeycomb version of Android (possibly Android 3.5) during a Q&A session today at IFA.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab will launch with FroYo (Android 2.2) and eventually be upgraded to Gingerbread (maybe Android 3.0), but Samsung said Honeycomb was for a different kind of tablet experience.
JK Shin, head of Samsung Mobile Communications, said that his company was working directly with Google on a larger tablet. “Moving forward with Honeycomb, that will be used in the next generation tablet as it is specifically optimized for different type of tablet, and will be used on another product only.”
Shin’s comments are interesting because not much is known about Honeycomb at this point. Many have speculated that Gingerbread would become Android 3.0 and be the first version of Android optimized for the tablet experience.
I still expect we will see Gingerbread in 2010 on a Tegra 2 Android device, but I doubt Samsung will make it available this year on the Galaxy Tab. It is nice to hear them commit to upgrading the Tab, but we all know how long these software updates can take.
Samsung also said there are no immediate plans to release a WiFi-only version of the Galaxy Tab. Their business plan is to work directly with carriers and have them subsidize the price so customers can have a lower entry point of purchase.