ROUND ROCK, Texas (
Android operating system and
yet-to-be-launched Windows 8 will be the big tablet rivals to
CEO Michael Dell said Tuesday evening. In other words,
Research In Motion's
don't stand a chance.
Speaking on the company's
, Dell reiterated the company's commitment to Android, and noted that its early tablet work on Windows 8 is "pretty encouraging."
"We think it's shaping up to be a competitive environment," he said. "I don't think that beyond those two there are viable alternatives that make sense -- there's a lot of other noise out there in the market that I don't think will amount to much of anything."
Dell CEO Michael Dell
Michael Dell studiously avoided naming specific tablet rivals during the call, but the dig was obviously aimed at counterpart HP and its
, and and RIM, whose QNX-powered
prompted lackluster reviews.
Dell, however, has hardly set the market on fire with its
Dell recently pulled the plug on its sort-of-a-smartphone, sort-of-a-tablet
, an Android-running device that didn't really catch on with consumers.
Instead, Dell has focused its efforts on a 7-inch version of the Streak. A 10-inch Streak Pro, geared towards enterprises, was also recently launched in China, and last year, Dell unveiled the Inspiron Duo, a Windows 7-powered tablet/netbook hybrid. None of them have floated to the top of the market to effectively challenge the market-leading iPad.
Dell executive Kirk Schell recently saidthat Windows-based tablets are well-suited to the enterprise, citing businesses' familiarity with Microsoft and its software. Windows 8, however, is not expected to launch until next year.
During Tuesday's call, analysts also asked Michael Dell about his thoughts on Google's $12.5 billion attempt to buy
and how it would impact the Android ecosystem.
"Certainly patents play a big role here," he said. "Having Android with a stronger ability to exhaust patent claims against it probably sets up an interesting competitive dynamic."
Dell shares plunged more than 8% to $14.49 in early trading Wednesday as investors responded to the company's second-quarter revenue miss and weak outlook.
--Written by James Rogers in New York.
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