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Friday, April 08, 2011, 12:55 pm PT (03:55 pm ET)

'Unstable performance' of Android 3.0 seen as benefit to Apple's iPad

Tablet makers who craft their own mobile operating system — particularly Apple and its iOS — stand to gain from the "unstable performance" of Google's tablet-centric Android 3.0, codenamed Honeycomb.

Sources at upstream touch panel makers indicated to DigiTimes that tablet makers that build their own operating systems, including Apple, HP and Research in Motion, have the best chance of benefitting from issues with Honeycomb.

"Due to Android 3.0 currently still having several issues that are unable to be resolved immediately and which are causing unstable performance in terms of operation," the report said, "HP, which is ready to launch its TouchPad tablet PC with its own OS, webOS, in the second quarter, and RIM, which will soon launch its PlayBook with BlackBerry OS in the middle of April, as well as Apple, are expected to gain from the mischief of Android 3.0 the sources pointed out."

Apple's competitors reportedly had "strong shipments" before the end of the first quarter. But orders for the second quarter of 2011 are said to be not as strong, as vendors are taking a wait-and-see approach to the tablet market.

Meanwhile, Apple has seen a highly successful launch of its iPad 2, while overwhelming demand for the device has forced continued stock-outs at stores across the globe.

DigiTimes restated its inside information that Motorola is apparently not planning orders for its just-launched Xoom tablet past June, as suppliers believe the company is already working on a successor. The Xoom is the first commercial device running Google's Android 3.0 Honeycomb operating system, but a new estimate has pegged its initial sales at just 100,000 units.

Despite the start of the Xoom and apparent instability with Android 3.0, the report indicated that manufacturers including HTC and Acer are still betting big on Honeycomb. HTC's Flyer tablet was originally planned to run on Android 2.3, but was recently switched to 3.0, while Acer plans to launch the 7-inch A100 tablet with Honeycomb in May.