Just think: a mere 12 months ago, many of us were still debating whether a consumer-friendly tablet like the iPad would make any sense. Today, the iPad is a certifiable hit, a new iPad is on the way, slates from the likes of HP, LG, Samsung, and RIM are in the pipeline, and come Thursday, a formidable new player in the budding tablet market—the Android-powered Motorola Xoom—will land in stores, Yahoo! News reports. Suddenly, it’s raining tablets, a welcome development for gadget lovers. The Xoom won’t be the first Android tablet to take on the iPad, but it does bear the distinction of being the first tablet running on “Honeycomb,” Google’s new, made-for-tablets version of the Android OS. And while the previous Android tablets like the Samsung Galaxy Tab and the Dell Streak 7 arrived with smaller, seven-inch displays, the Xoom’s roomy 10.1-inch screen invites direct comparison to the similar-sized iPad…

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