More iPad Contenders Appear – Where’s the iPad 3

So with initial iPad opponents Xoom and Playbook off to a weak start. Dire predictions of XOOM sales seem to be a weekly occurence, and the kindest reviews for Playbook were basically buy the thing in 3 months, maybe.

It seems like the next wave of contenders are needed to challenge the iPad 2, and this week two bigger names threw their hat into the ring.

1. Sony- Sony’s offering two Android based tablets scheduled for release this fall. Both of which veer away from being straight iPad copies. The first one is a traditional tablet form but has a curved back to present more of a flipped notebook type feel. It’s a little weird. The second device is two small 5.5 screen connected. It’s very similar to the two touchscreen smartphone made by Kyocera. You have to wonder about the weight and battery consequences of using two smaller screens like that? Plus as Kyocera is going to discover with their smartphone you have to code software to take advantage of the dual screens. But the first tablet should be interest to see in comparison with XOOM and the WebOS TouchPad. However, Sony is a big brand and knows how to sell hardware in the computer and consumer electronics space. Here’s an image of the two somewhat strange devices.

2. Lenovo – Lenovo is talking about the LePad, their entry into this space. In Q2/Q3 Lenovo should release a 10 inch iPad like tablet and a hybrid/convertible laptop/tablet combo thing. Lenovo just like Sony is a serious player in the computer/consumer electronics space. Just like Sony, Lenovo will know how to get retail space in Best Buy and other retail outlets.

The success or lack of success of these new entries and previous contenders MoD thinks will greatly impact the potential arrival of the iPad 3. The success of the iPad 2 launch has probably pushed off any intention by Apple to launch the iPad 3 this fall. If you are Apple and cannot make enough iPad 2 why not wait and further fine tune the iPad 3 (working on further improvements in processor and graphics capability) and continue working with LCD producers to get cheaper retinue displays. In addition, iOS 5 will probably further improve the iPad tablet experience while RIM and Google are still trying to match the iOS 4 overall tablet experience. So Apple will probably use this headstart to create an awesome experience for the iPad 3 (while perhaps keeping the iPad 2 in the lineup at a reduced price point).

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