Pocket-lint has been told that the Viewsonic ViewPad 4 smartphone will be the first device with Android 2.4 when it launches in April of this year. Android 2.4 was confirmed over a month ago; however, this rumor lends credence to the fact that the update will not be a major release. Instead, the update will augment Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), allowing dual-core apps specifically designed for Android 3.0 (Honeycomb) to work on single-core devices.
Earlier last week, we heard that Honeycomb was designed exclusively for tablets and not for smartphones, though some of its features will be carried over to smartphones. This appears to be in line with Pocket-lint's rumor today. It suggests that Google intends to create an Android OS (3.0+) specifically for tablets and a completely separate OS (2.0+) for smartphones. The potential fork isn't surprising since tablets and smartphones have very different user interfaces. Indeed, it would be foolish to try to support the vast variety of devices, with their varying UIs and sizes, through a single OS.