Unsurprisingly, the Android tablet market on the decline. You don’t have to be an analyst to see that usage is dramatically down, and a new report confirms that very fact. But that’s not stopping Motorola from trying to resuscitate it.
According to Android Police, Motorola is working on a new Moto tablet, it’s first in a number of years. And according to a screenshot it received from a source, the tablet isn’t just another run-of-the-mill 10-inch affair with a metal-and-glass build. It might include a cool new feature that could actually make you want to buy one.
Something called Productivity mode could change the way we look at Android tablets. According to the report, there will be a toggle that changes up the Nougat interface, letting you pin apps to the navigation bar, quickly switch between them without needing to hit up the multitasking carousel, and close apps by long-pressing on its icon and swiping up.
Android Police doesn’t offer any information about a possible release date, but just the fact that Motorola has a prototype of such a device is interesting in itself. While long thought to be dead, Android tablets are having something of a renaissance in 2017, with Samsung releasing the Galaxy Tab S3 and Google changing up the way its Pixel C tablet operates, and Moto’s feature is another way tablets are adapting to the changing times.
However, it’s likely not enough to stem the tide. A new IDC report states that worldwide shipments have dropped some 8.5 percent over the past 12 months, and even Apple’s popular iPad is feeling the pressure. The bleak numbers represent 10 straight quarters of declining tablet sales.
The big picture: While it remains to be seen if people will ever want to buy a premium Android tablet, this is exactly the kind of thing that Android tablets need. Granted, Motorola’s Productivity mode could be an experimental feature on a prototype device that never sees the light of day, but it’s intriguing to see manufacturers still thinking about tablets. The biggest problem with tablets is that they are mostly just larger version of our phones, and an experience tailored for the big screen could propel interest again. But we’re not holding our breath.