I'm going to come clean, I'm not a fan of Google's Android operating system. I just don't think that a desktop / icons approach is appropriate for either a smartphone or a tablet. That said I've now seen the demonstration video for Google's forthcoming 'tablet' version of the operating system, codenamed Honeycomb and I'm quickly becoming a convert.
A video which you can see here shows shows Google's Andy Rubin showing off a prototype Motorola tablet running the OS which is very unlike the Android I've come to know.
Honeycomb will be released next year and proves that Google is taking the tablet form-factor seriously, and far more seriously than companies such as Microsoft. The OS has none of the familiar Android buttons and a much more streamlined user interface.
Rubin says the OS also includes new APIs which allow split-view applications, much as were introduced in iOS with the iPad. These will allow applications to be split into multiple views. He then goes on to describe something that sounds remarkably like Microsoft's new Metro UI on it's Windows Phone platform.
I've been holding off buying a tablet because I knew that big changes would be coming in 2011, and here's the proof. This looks to be a very exciting product and if it's even half as good as the video suggests, I'll be a complete convert.
Update: First tablet devices with Chrome OS, the Chrome operating system, have been released in the meantime by Google. It is a web-based operating system mostly with much of what is stored and used available only in the cloud and not on the computer itself.
Android based tablets are also available in many different form factors with the most popular one probably being Amazon's Kindle which has been created by Amazon as an ebook - and later on media - device that users can use to read ebooks, watch movies, listen to music and audio, surf the web or play games.