Looks like owners of Android-powered slate PCs and tablets will not have to worry about not being able to find apps in the Android Market  that are optimized for their larger displays. In what must be a clear sign that Google is taking the tablet market very seriously, the search giant has seeded a preview SDK of the upcoming Honeycomb release of Android for developers to experiment with.

Well, that took Google long enough. Considering that some reputable OEMs have already announced plans to launch new tablets that will be powered off Google's upcoming Android Honeycomb OS, one would expect that the search giant would have already updated and released a new SDK for developers to get themselves acquainted with the various nooks and crannies of the new operating system.

Still, this is a typical case of 'better late than never', and it appears that developer patience has finally won out after all. After a short period of waiting, Google has finally released a preview SDK of its upcoming mobile operating system for developers to play around with.


That being said, it being a preview version of the SDK means that developers will have to work with certain restrictions in mind when utilizing the preview development kit. According to Google, the APIs used in the preview SDK have not been finalized and are subject to any last-minute changes before the actual SDK is released. But more importantly, applications built for the OS with the preview SDK cannot be published to the Android Market, so there goes any hopes of seeing Honeycomb-optimized apps hitting the Market before OS is officially released.

However, the Honeycomb preview SDK  comes with a few neat features of its own. In addition to featuring support for much larger displays (up to WXGA), developers can also get their hands wet with the new "holographic" UI which Google claims has been developed specially for use with larger screens found on tablets and slate-like PC devices.

That is all the information Google is willing to release about its new developer SDK at the moment, so users like us can do nothing else but wait and see what developers will make of the new development package. But if it is of any consolation, the fact that Google has made available a preview version of the SDK means that it is taking the tablet market seriously, and that it probably won't be long before tablet-optimized versions of popular apps start appearing in the Android Market once Honeycomb has been launched.

Source: Android Developer page