Google to Launch Nexus 8.9 Tablet in the Summer?

by Dale Wright

A rumored Google Nexus 8.9 tablet

Google is currently developing an 8.9-inch Nexus tablet, due for production in July or August, if rumors are to be believed.

In an email to CNET, Rhoda Alexander, the director of tablet and monitor research at information company IHS Technology, discussed the Nexus tablet, saying she expected production of the device to start in the summer.

Alexander said that Google was planning to make a fairly small number of the Nexus 8.9 tablets and instead would pitch it at the higher end of the market, with premium spec and features.  The pricing is apparently not decided yet, but Alexander said it would most likely reflect the tablet’s high-end spec and could be “higher than $299.”

Google Nexus 7 Tablet

HTC is rumored to be the manufacturer of the Nexus 8.9, which would be surprising.  Google has had its Nexus 7 tablet produced by Asus, and the Nexus 10 made by Samsung, so it would be interesting to see a different manufacturer working on a device for the company.  HTC hasn’t made a slate since the Flyer in 2011, and it would be great to see them re-enter the tablet market.

The Kindle Fire HDX 8.9, an Amazon tablet, is a device at the same size as the upcoming Nexus 8.9.  That tablet was pretty well-received so perhaps that spells success for Google’s device, though that obviously depends on its specifications.

For any fans of the smaller Nexus 7 tablet, don’t worry yet.  Alexander also confirmed that a third generation of the little Nexus tablet would be released at some point in 2014, though she admitted that HIS Technology “do not have any confirmation of actual contracts for such a product at present.”  Google and HTC have kept pretty quiet on the rumors, so we’ll see if they come to fruition in the coming months.