Google is giving up on making its pricey Pixel-branded tablets and has confirmed it will not deliver a follow-up to its 2018 Pixel Slate.
Google’s Chrome OS Pixel Slate got positive reviews but also complaints about the quality of Android apps. It was an expensive tablet but one that gave full desktop Chrome, the ability to run Android apps, and introduced round keys on the attached keyboard.
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But there will be no sequel to the 2018 Pixel Slate. Google has told Computerworld that it had two smaller-sized Chrome OS slabs in the works but this week decided to kill these iPad rivals and focus solely on its Pixelbook hardware – a laptop rival to high-end Windows 10 hardware like Microsoft’s Surface devices, and to some extent Apple MacBook Pro laptops.
From here on in, Google’s Pixel story will revolve around Pixel phones and the Pixelbook laptop line. Indeed, there could be a new Pixelbook out by the end of the year, according to a Google spokesperson.
Rick Osterloh, senior vice president of devices and services at Google, confirmed the Pixel pivot on Twitter, noting that Google’s hardware team “will be solely focused on building laptops moving forward”.
Of course, Google will not be abandoning Android and Chrome OS efforts with other OEMs that make tablets.
He also noted that Google will continue to support the Pixel Slate for a few years. That means software updates through to June of 2024, according to Computerworld.
Google started selling the Pixel Slate in November 2018 from $600 and up. The tablet had a solid display and offered mouse and trackpad support, but it was also expensive for the category, especially when compared with the wider Chromebook market.
The Pixel Slate was the successor to the Pixel C, which Google released in 2015. The ‘C’ stood for convertible, but required an extra $150 for the Bluetooth keyboard on top of the $500 base price to make the 10.2-inch tablet a convertible.