Motorola's Android tablet is now available, but how is it selling? Not so well, according to the number crunchers at Deutsche Bank, who've estimated that the Honeycomb device has shifted 100,000 units so far.
The company based its estimate on Google's own Android developer website, where it gives out percentages for the installation share of the various versions of Android. That chart says 0.2 per cent of users are on the Android 3.0 Honeycomb version, which has so far only been available on the Xoom.
That means -- here's the maths part -- that Deutsche Bank thinks 0.2 per cent of Android users is equivalent to 100,000 people, which means in turn that the analysts there reckon there are 50 million Android devices out in the wild. That's a smaller number than we might have predicted.
The figures have been seized on by numerous sites and blogs to suggest that the Xoom is already a sales flop. Boy Genius Report has a good take on why this may not be the case though.
As Boy Genius Report says, "In an unproven market that is barely a year old, we're looking at a brand new device that is selling at a rate of 75,000 units per month. We're looking at a brand new device with a brand new operating system that is the first version of Android to address the tablet market. We're looking at a brand new device that has likely pulled in more than $70m in hardware sales. We're looking at a brand new device that will also be responsible for millions of dollars each month in revenue for carriers and developers. But it's a flop?"
Well, you know how quick people are to judge nowadays. The Xoom, of course, is only just going on sale outside the US, so plenty more will be strolling off the shelves in the weeks ahead. That's when the real proof will emerge as to whether the Xoom is a hit or miss on Motorola's part.
One thing that might help is cutting its price. That's what online UK retailer Dixons has done, writing to people who have pre-ordered the Xoom to tell them that it will now cost £479.99, rather than £499.99. Everyone who has already pre-ordered from Dixons will get a £20 refund directly to their card.