Google’s Pixel Tablet is now available without the thing that makes it interesting

When we reviewed the Pixel Tablet roughly this time last year, we noted in no uncertain terms, “It’s all about the dock.” It was, after all, the one thing that truly distinguished the device from countless other uninspired Android tablets. Now I’m pleased to report that you, the consumer, can purchase the device without the bit that really made it good and interesting.

More buying options are always good, of course, but the charging speaker dock is far and away the most interesting part of the system.  It puts the device to use as a big smart display when you’re not using it tablet mode.

Think of it a big more versatile version of the Nest Hub Max — a device which we’ve not heard about in a couple of years.

(Sidenote: what the hell is going on with the Nest Hub line, anyway? Or Google Assistant, for that matter? Will Gemini replace Assistant outright soon? Will these questions and more be answered next week at Google I/O? )

The announcement rolled out alongside the arrival of the Google’s Pixel 8a budget handset. It also coincidentally dropped a couple of hours after Apple introduced new versions of the iPad Air and iPad Pro.

The Pixel Slate is also now available in Italy and Spain for the first time.

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