Why no lines for the Motorola Xoom? Take 2

Readers offered some cogent arguments for and against the Xoom tablet. Google and Motorola face an array of obstacles in cracking the tablet market, as readers astutely point out.

Brooke Crothers Former CNET contributor
Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.
Brooke Crothers
4 min read

Readers had a lot to say about the Motorola Xoom, the Apple iPad, and their respective degrees of success in response to an April 2 post last titled "Why no one lines up for the Motorola Xoom."

Motorola Xoom.
Motorola Xoom. Motorola

To repeat the premise. The success of Apple's iPad is ratcheting up the pressure on executive boards at PC and device makers. Acer CEO Gianfranco Lanci was, by all appearances, pushed out because, among other reasons, he believed Acer wasn't responding quickly enough to the tablet phenomenon. A perspective at odds apparently with Acer's chairman, J.T. Wang. (And, yes, I stand corrected. Lanci left because he took a more aggressive stance on pursuing tablets, according to reports. Not the other way around.)

Is Wang or Lanci right? Is the tablet just an Apple success story that PC makers like Acer won't be able to duplicate? And is Motorola-Google rushing into tablets in a desperate attempt to keep pace with Apple?

Here's a sample of what readers had to say about the Xoom, the iPad, and the tablet in general:

A Google store: "Google needs to create a physical store, a physical Android Marketplace, where they can display the most prominent tablets, phones etc as these products wouldn't have to compete against PCs, Apple products etc. at local best buys. Not sure if Google is ready to do this, or if they're even interested in the idea, but who wouldn't walk into a Google store, if just to see what's going on?" (cabrillo24)

Too much choice = confusion? "Android has a small problem, that of being tooooo 'open source'...I've looked [at] 3-4 tablets and phones, they all say Android 2.2, but look and act different! What the blaze?!! Why can't they be like the recent windows7mobile? Same across different devices!" (hananias)

Xoom in need of apps: "I don't want a iPad since it is a 10 inch (roughly) iPhone with minimal upgrades for a premium price. Google's REAL problem is they don't take care of their own product. They let Motorola, HTC, Samsung, Logitech, Sony, IBM, Verizon and etc do the hardware/marketing for them...The Xoom could work if they get apps! I personally loved it and I will probably get one but it has NO APPS!" (LoboSolo21)

Apple out-markets Motorola but the Xoom is better: "I work for Verizon...Apple REQUIRES a wall or a section of the store literally to showcase their products (visit Best Buy, Wal-Mart, Target)...[But] I gave up my iPad for a Motorola Xoom...Multi-Tasking: Sure apple introduced multi-tasking a few months ago on the iPad but it's still subpar at best. On the Xoom multi-tasking feels more natural and works flawlessly. You can launch the Camera, access the web and get driving directions while your music and YouTube video you where watching recently stay running." (Nuugame)

Don't forget the Nook: How many Nook Color tablets has Barnes & Noble sold? Over 3 million in a couple of months, and it's STILL touted mainly as an e-reader...No, you don't have to stand in line to get one, but those are still pretty good sales figures from a bookstore, and fairly close to what the ipad had when it first came onto the market." (Magicland).

Simple is best for most people: "I think the same things that turn on tech fanatics are the same things that turn off some of the general public. The general public really [want] products that not only are user friendly but work out of the box. I don't really think too many people, me included want to mess around with all the "open" geek-centric superior qualities of Android." (RP2011)

Lame marketing for Xoom at stores: "I was in Staples today and they had a Xoom on display. It was turned off. I tried all the buttons but could not find how to turn it on to try it. No salesperson around to show me how. Compare this to Apple Stores with 5 - 10 working display models and 5 - 6 salespeople hovering around to provide service. How can I be interested in a Xoom? Am I just supposed to trust that I'll love it, buy it and go home to see how/if it works?" (gregrochedc--2008)

Lest we forget, price: "The ONLY reason the Xoom failed is due to price. There are many other Andriod tablets coming out with a cheaper price tag and way more functionality. Asus is about to release one here in the US for $400 with Honeycomb installed. I am sure that one will fly off the shelves. I plan on buying one." (TX-Sunset).

Love my Xoom!: "LOVING my Xoom. I liked my I pad, but wow, the xoom is a breath of fresh air. Flash support, full hulu, amazon videos, my entire amazon music and movie library, sports websites like NHL.com actually work, I could go on and on." (vayapues)

Everyone just wants to be like Apple: "I am actually surprised at how many biased, not to forget absolutely ridiculous, comments there are on this subject. Apple is "king"....no, no Android is "king". I understand that one may be more loyal and follow a certain device, OS, or whatever it is. Here is the lowdown...plain, simple, and UNbiased. Everyone...and I mean EVERYONE (Android especially) wants to be like Apple. That's all it is!! The iPhone came out and started it all." (xredsand26)