The future for Augen's $150 tablet and $100 smartbook isn't looking good -- not only do the blue-light specials have slow processors and resistive touchscreens, but their official Google app privileges have just been revoked. To be fair, Android Market actually wasn't working on either device from the get-go, but Augen just sent us a statement confirming that the entire proprietary suite (including Market, Gmail and more) was preloaded on the devices without Google's permission, and won't appear on new batches that make it to store shelves. Augen says it's working with Google to secure rights to these apps for new products further down the road, but if you want a dirt-cheap mass market Android device with these apps preinstalled, you'd best head on down to Kmart... assuming they're finally in stock, of course. Press release after the break.
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Florida- August 07, 2010 – Augen Electronics Corp., an innovator of tablet pc's, netbooks, and eReaders, would like to deliver the following statement to address the circulating media gossip regarding Augen's preloaded apps.

On July, 29 2010 Augen had a constructive conversation with Google Inc. The topic of the discussion was Google's Application Suite. As you know, Google Inc. has released the source code for the entire Android platform under the flexible and commercial-friendly Apache 2.0 open source license. Augen is free to use that open source code; however, the suite of applications comprising Google Mobile Services on Android are proprietary to Google and have not been released under open source licenses. The Google Mobile Service and Android Apps were pre installed during the development process on our tablets for testing purposes, and were not removed unintentionally before releasing the products in the market place.

Google and Augen came to a mutual understanding that the Google Mobile Services Application Suite pre-installed on the GENTOUCH/ GENBOOK Series; could not be removed due to technological constraints for the products that were sold, shipped, or already produced.

For future production runs and deliveries, Augen will block and remove the Google Mobile Services Application Suite from the current devices until further notice. We are currently in communication with Google Inc. to obtain the required licensing for upcoming products, and will announce in our future statements the timelines and availability of these products as it will become available to us. However, for your convenience Augen will add applications to accommodate the absence of the Google Mobile Services Application Suite.

OUR COMMITMENT TO YOU...

The future of Augen holds a key to develop market conscious products with a vision of delivering the latest and emerging technologies, being available and affordable to every household, big/small corporation in the United States of America and worldwide.

We are at the final stages of releasing an entire new line of products which incorporates the newest technology and concepts, that will make a difference in your every day lives. We encourage you our Gen Nation, to follow the exciting products that Augen will be unveiling in the very near future. We are here to put the world at your fingertips and take you beyond the realm of the market that exists today, bringing you with us into a new era of open world communication and computing.

We are a US based company and understand and incorporate your wishes, desires, and requirements in our company's DNA. We are here for you and are looking for your continued support, and excitement in our current and future releases.

Gary Gofman
CEO
Augen Electronics Corp.

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Augen's Kmart tablet and smartbook won't have Google-branded apps from now on