It's no secret that Android 4.0 ICS has been majorly disappointing. With hardly any hardware that supports it and less than one percent of the Android smartphone and tablet population running ICS, it's practically doomed. A report claims Google might just leapfrog ICS with Android 5.0 Jellybean later this year.
The always rumor-happy DigiTimes reports that its supply checks suggest Google will release Android 5.0 Jellybean as a hybrid operating system for notebooks/netbooks and smartphones/tablets to compete directly with Windows 8.
Windows 8, as you know, will be Microsoft's first OS that's truly built for tablets and desktop use.
Google will reportedly fold its netbook Chrome OS into the Android department to create one super mobile operating system. Another stab at the booming netbook/tablet/Ultrabook business? Sure, why not.
We won't be surprised if this all goes down. Chrome for Android is already a sign that Google's interested in replicating its Chrome experience on mobile devices.
Recall that Android started out as smartphone OS. By the time Android 2.3 Gingerbread rolled out, Android was already becoming a household name. Then 3.0 Honeycomb came out as a tablet-only Android OS, but it only ended up fragmenting the operating system. Needless to say, few Honeycomb tablets have been successful, if any, other than Samsung's skinned Galaxy Tab series.
Android 4.0 ICS merged the smartphone and tablet Android OS back into one consistent UI. Critically acclaimed by many reviewers as the most polished version of Android yet, ICS has failed to latch on because smartphone and tablet makers have been slow to provide the update to existing hardware.
Take a look at Motorola's stance. It says ICS updates won't arrive until Q3 of 2012. That's not until the end of summer. By then, this whole Jelly Bean stuff could already be announced ready to go.