- Google will no longer pursue making its own tablet devices, Business Insider has learned.
- According to a Google spokesperson, the company has halted the production of two unreleased tablet devices and will not come out with a successor to the Pixelbook Slate.
- Instead, the company says it shift resources and focus more attention to its Pixelbook laptop line.
Google will no longer pursue making its own tablet devices, Business Insider has learned.
According to a Google spokesperson, the company has halted the production of two unreleased tablet devices and will not come out with a successor to the Pixelbook Slate. Instead, the company says it will shift resources and focus more attention on its Pixelbook laptop line.
"For Google’s first-party hardware efforts, we’ll be focusing on Chrome OS laptops and will continue to support Pixel Slate," a Google spokesperson told Business Insider on Thursday.
Google employees working on the unreleased (and now discontinued) tablets were told of the news on Wednesday, according to the spokesperson. Many of these employees, the spokesperson said, have been shifted to work on its Pixelbook laptop line, while the rest are working on "confidential projects."
News of Google foregoing its tablet product lines comes three months after Business Insider reported that "roadmap cutbacks" had forced dozens on the company’s Create team — which is responsible for its laptop and tablet products — to find new positions. At the time, one person familiar with the matter said that the Create group had a "bunch of stuff in the works" and that cutting its staff would most likely "pare down the portfolio" of products.
On Thursday, Google confirmed that two of those future products were tablets smaller than the 12.3 inch Pixelbook Slate it had released in October 2018. These tablets were supposed to launch together sometime after 2019, the spokesperson said, but after quality assurance testing didn’t meet the company’s standards, it decided to scrap the devices and its entire tablet lineup.
Indeed, Google has had a history of struggling to produce a tablet that consumers loved. Its first manufactured tablet — known as the Pixel C — was launched in 2015 and received less than stellar reviews. The longtime tech reviewer Walt Mossberg said the Pixel C represented "an object lesson in what Google shouldn’t do if it pursues home-grown integration of hardware and software." The company launched its Pixel Slate — a tablet that acts like a laptop, meant to compete with Microsoft’s Surface Pro and Apple’s iPad Pro — to a similar, cold reception.
With the move away from tablets, the company said to expect new, Google-made laptops to be announced as early as this year.
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