Out two months before iPad 2
According to a leaked document obtained by Engadget, Best Buy will begin carrying the Motorola Xoom shortly after Valentine's Day. That puts the onus on Apple to do an official iPad 2 announcement ahead of that release, even if the actual product won't be available for some time. It sort of has to release some iPad 2 details before the Xoom hits stores so consumers can compare.
The iPad still has a much bigger buzz and, with nearly 10 million sold, a more established reputation than Motorola's newcomer. But it's almost a year old, and is bound to suffer by comparison with the brand-new Xoom absent info on the next iPad model.
No SD slot
The Motorola Xoom will have several advantages over the current iPad, including a 10-inch HD display, a dual-core NVIDIA Tegra 2 processor, and Adobe (ADBE) Flash 10. These may be matched by the upcoming iPad 2.
However, the Xoom will have something the iPad 2 probably won't: An SD slot or some other form of removable memory. Based on the information we do have, the iPad 2 will be more an incremental change than a revamp:
- front-facing camera
- rear-facing camera
- improved speakers
Second, no removable memory means users are dependent on wireless connections for file transfers. For those with the Wi-Fi model, a hotspot isn't always available. For customers with the 3G iPad, the data-limited download plans from AT&T (T) and Verizon (V) restrict just how much you can transfer wirelessly -- a big issue when it comes to hi-res photos.
Photo courtesy of Motorola