On Wednesday, Google debuted a preview of version 3.0 of the Android mobile platform. While earlier versions of Android software were optimized for smartphone devices, Android 3.0 (nicknamed Honeycomb) is tailored specifically for tablet PCs.
As seen in a brief demo video, included in a blog post by Google VP of Engineering Andy Rubin, Honeycomb looks snazzy and sophisticated with its "holographic user interface." Venture Beat glowingly says this new UI "looks unlike any version of Android we've ever seen."
Google Talk, a highlight of the Honeycomb operating system, connects tablet and PC users via voice and video chat using the built-in cameras available on many devices expected to run Android 3.0.
Other new features include improved web-browsing, access to Google's eBook library, access to interactive Google Maps in 3D, and tablet-optimized versions of Google products like Gmail and YouTube. Android 3.0 also aims to fine-tune existing Android features, such as multi-tasking, notifications, app access, and more.
Earlier this week, it was predicted that Android tablets, especially those running Honeycomb, would make a big splash at the massive Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. And so far, devices like the Motorola Xoom have made big waves at CES 2011. "Perhaps," Search Engine Land suggests, "this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) should be renamed 'AES' for Android Electronics Show -- given all the handsets and tablets featuring the Google mobile OS that are being shown and rolled out."
To view Google's sneak peek at Android 3.0, watch the video below, courtesy of the Google Mobile Blog.