I think Google has some surprises left and OEMs need to be patient least they kill the tablet market by rushing immature product to the market. For OEMs, their problem is they choose to play follow the leader with Apple rather than take some risk and innovate. Just because software is open source does not mean you cannot provide your own add-on features. A company that offers unique add-on software with their products can establish themselves as unique. As Rick implied, Apple only looks at the premium market because it markets itself strictly as a premium brand, but the general electronics market provides significantly more revenue.
@chanj: Actually, despite the enormous hype and overblown public perception of Apple's market share, most market watchers expect the multi-company Android slice of the market will be significantly larger than the Apple slice which is still far behind Nokia and 1-2 others.
Android is suffering some of the problems that Windows CE and Windows Mobile have been suffering. The catching up of device manufacturer to the release of new version is one. The compatibility of application to different version of OS is the second. One of the major stumbling block is the compatible of applications to different Android platform. Apple has consolidated 1 form factor, 1 screen resolution for the developers. Developers would have a much easier life in developing applications. The proliferation of the device will be much bigger.
Microsoft went through similar struggles, often taking a new code base (ironically like Windows for Pen Computing) and piloting with a handful of OEMs to get the "expereince" fine tuned before a general release. I suspect Google may want to have a Honeycomb-for-smartphones ready before it releases this tablet version just so people don't go off on the wrong tangent.
It is a tricky line that Google is walking. Exerting increased control over the OS decreases the chaos, but some degree of chaos is critical to the rapid pace of Android development. If they close it down too much then innovation will move to a different platform.
Having open source is good but will hardware compatibility be a problem? The model that Apple running can help to make a robust OS but still make game developer happy. Of course, not other gadget developers.
Perhaps Google doesn't want Apple taking a look in to their source code... yet.
Perhaps Google has some good surprises upcoming in it's Honeycomb version.
It's a natural in any competition to be reluctant to show all cards early in the game.
It'll be open source all right... but not just yet.
This is crap, as far as I'm concerned. There's no good reason to limit honeycomb from phones. It's really an Apple-esque move. Certain phone/tablet hardware combos (Samsung Galaxy for example) are not really that different. Both should be able to run 3.0. Where's my picket sign?!
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