Google tablet to launch in July

Gadget enthusiasts have been speculating about the 2012 release of the Google tablet for months. Now, sources close to the project say the iPad and Kindle competitor will debut in July.

It seems Google is pushing back the Google tablet previously anticipated May release, in an effort to cut prices. from initially announced $249 price tag down to $199 or even less.

Lower price will help Google compete with Amazon’s Kindle Fire — which is now leading the 7-inch tablet market with its $199 model. It sold over five million units last quarter. The Barnes & Noble Nook Color Tablet  is priced at $169 for the 7-inch touchscreen version.

By contrast, Apple is high-end, selling one of the most expensive tablets on the market with its lowest-priced 9.5-inch iPad (16GB Wi-Fi-only) costing $499.

The 7-inch Google Tablet will run on the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich OS with a Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core processor. The delayed release could be due to Google’s nearly finished Android 5.0 Jelly Bean update, which Google could be waiting for before it releases its first tablet.

Once released, Google plans to sell its tablets through its own online store.

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