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Tablets

Google tablet delayed until July, is Wi-Fi-only

Google's first tablet won't launch until July, according to sources close to the project.

Google's first tablet won't launch until July, two months later than originally planned, and will be Wi-Fi-only. The design was supposed to be ready to go in May, hence what we heard back in December about it launching in the next six months.

The delay is due to Google wanting to tweak the device, according to sources close to the project, The Verge reports. The sources also lifted the lid on the specs.

Google wants to change the design, as well as work on lowering the price from the current $249 (£160). It's expected to hit the magic number of $199 (£125) to compete with the Amazon Kindle Fire.

So, the specs. The device is made in partnership with Asus, rather than Motorola, which Google owns. It sports a 7-inch screen, Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor, and is Wi-Fi-only. Bit of a shock, that last one. Though the 7-inch screen is as we previously reported.

But rather than Android Jelly Bean, it'll run Ice Cream Sandwich. Strange, seeing as that would be the main reason I can see for delaying the tablet. Apparently trying to shoehorn Jelly Bean into it would cause even more delays, according to the sources. Which prompts the question: if even Google can't easily get the latest version of its operating system into its own devices, what chance does everyone else have?

Last December, Google boss Eric Schmidt said a Google tablet would be out in the first half of 2012. "In the next six months we plan to market a tablet of the highest quality," he told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera. That 'highest quality' part prompted rumours it would be a high-end device, more inline with the iPad than Amazon's more wallet-friendly offering. But that doesn't seem the case.

Apple is also rumoured to be working on a 7.85-inch iPad, coming this autumn. Which would pit the two companies in direct competition once again. Handbags at the ready.

What do you make of Google's tablet? Can it compete with Apple and the other Android offerings? Is Wi-Fi-only really a good idea? And why didn't it get Motorola to make it? Let me know in the comments below, or on Facebook.