Google is rumored to release a Chrome OS tablet built by HTC and sold under the internet giant's own name according to a report.
The news of the new device follows the unveiling of the Chrome Web Store at GDC with a mooted October release date. Pioneering an initial device with Google branding has presidence as the company took this approach when it released the Nexus One smartphone, also made by Taiwanese smartphone giant HTC.
The report on downloadsquad.com claims that Google plans to offer the tablet on the US Verizon network, the network which the company had reportedly been in discussions with for some time. Google and Verizon also made a joint policy declaration on Internet neutrality which has proven to be highly controversial.
The 26th of November release date is known as Black Friday in the US and is the height of the shopping season. Downloadquad specualated that the device would be substantially cheaper than the iPad, if not free with a Verizon data contract.
The Google tablet is rumored to be based upon the Nvidia Tegra 2 chipset, combining ARM CPU and Nvidia graphics as seen in recent high-end netbook computers. Downloadsquad speculated that the device would offer a 1280 x 720 multitouch display, 2GB of RAM and a 32GB SSD with WiFi/Bluetooth and LTE connectivity as well as GPS a webcame and external storage such as a multi-card reader.
These specifications seem unusually high, however, since Google's Chrome OS is notable for being a cloud-based lightweight OS where applications appear inside the Chrome browser without a focus on local storage. Google will be keen to maintain price competetive with the Apple iPad.
Chrome OS is taking a different tack from the Android smartphone operating system by retaining tighter control over the operating system. Only hardware partners with approved devices will gain access to the code. Companies known to be involved in hardware support for Chrome OS include Asus, Acer, Dell, Lenovo and HP with Adobe providing Flash capability.
Image credit: Google concept render