Thursday, March 29, 2012, 03:00 pm PT (06:00 pm ET)
Google plans to launch online store for Android tabletsIn an attempt to boost disappointing sales of tablets using its Android OS, Google is reportedly planning to rollout an online storefront by the end of 2012, with some of the devices expected to be co-branded.
Citing sources familiar with the matter, The Wall Street Journal reports that the internet search giant's plans are similar to the short-lived online sales model of the company's 2010 Nexus One handset only on a wider scale similar to the online Apple Store.
Although some of the tablets to be sold in the new store will be Google branded or co-branded, the company is not expected to be part of the manufacturing process. Partner OEMs like Samsung and ASUS will reportedly handle the hardware side of the operation while Google will provide design and software support. Earlier this month, rumors had it that Google and Asus were already planning on releasing a co-branded tablet in May.
The business model is identical to how Google operated with the Nexus One, which was built by Chinese smartphone maker HTC.
It is not known when the store will officially make its debut, and the sources are unclear as to which Android tablet makers will be taking part in the endeavor.
It was recently reported that Google nets 80 percent of its mobile revenue from iOS and only 20 percent from Android.
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