Thursday, March 11, 2010
The formidable triumvirate of Amazon, Dell, and Google is apparently poised to give iTunes the first serious run for its money just as the iPad is about to take Apple’s downloadable media megastore where no computer has gone before.
Engadget has posted two slides that appear to come from a Dell presentation showing that the Google Android-powered Dell Streak tablet will include access to over 300,000 e-books in the Kindle store, everything in the Amazon MP3 download store (over 11 million “songs and extras”), and over 50,000 movies and television shows available for one-day rental or permanent purchase.
Taken together, this mirrors what iTunes offers for Apple devices, giving hardware manufacturers such as Dell a way to kick-start plans to take on the iPad.
Other Android devices already ship with the Amazon MP3 store, but an addition of the company’s Kindle e-books and sizable catalog of on-demand movies and television shows to Dell’s upcoming line of various-size tablets — and possibly Android devices in general — signals a more significant alliance between Google, Amazon and hardware manufacturers like Dell, as they team up to copy Apple’s successful mix of touchscreens and entertainment.
The documents also indicate that — like Kindle owners — users of this Dell mini-tablet will have wireless (3G) access to the Kindle store with “no monthly fees, service plans, or hunting for a Wi-Fi spot.” If that’s the case, Dell’s tablets would have a significant advantage over the iPad, which can only access the 3G network if you pay for the more expensive version of the hardware and sign up for a $15 or $30 per month data plan in addition to whatever wireless data plan you have for your phone.
Amazon did not return our request for confirmation, while Dell spokesman Matt Parretta only said, “We’re not going to comment on rumor and speculation on unannounced products.”
Even among the rumors flying around, nobody’s speculating about the price or ship date of the Dell Streak, Dell Mini 5, or whatever it ends up being called. Given the company’s track record when playing catch-up against Apple (see the iPod-like, inexpensive Dell DJ MP3 player) it will likely position this device as a less costly version of the iPad concept with the same range of books, music and video, thanks to Amazon and Google.
Tablet processor manufacturer ARM expects over 50 iPad competitors to be released this year. Even if Dell screws this up, or if people aren’t receptive to the Streak’s size (between that of an iPhone and an iPad, although Dell plans to release other sizes later), the integration of Amazon’s book and video platforms into other Android-powered tablets could prove a significant challenge to the multipurpose iPad and dedicated e-book readers.
Then, the question will be whether a consortium of companies (hardware manufacturers for device, Google for the OS and Amazon for the content) are capable of providing an experience as smooth as Apple tends to, because it controls all of those elements itself.
Amazon, Google Partner for Mobile Music Store
Amazon: Kindle Books Outsold Real Books This Christmas
Amazon’s Kindle 2 Slims Down, Adds Audio
Can Apple’s iPad Save the Media After All?
The Key to Apple’s iPad? Uh-Oh, It’s Magic
Ten Things Missing From the iPad
Condé Nast Adds 4 Titles to iPad Initiative
iPad Surprise: Lower TV Episode Prices in iTunes?
Read More http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/03/apple-beware-dell-with-a-little-help-from-amazon-and-google-is-taking-on-itunes/#ixzz0ht8X7Ubn