In a move that will certainly irritate many people, ViewSonic has taken to its Facebook page with an official word on the gTablet, future support, and whether or not it will ever officially see Honeycomb. As you may have already guessed, the simple answer from ViewSonic to the latter is "no," with very little reasoning behind the decision.
The ViewSonic gTablet was one of the first Android tablets to hit the market with the NVIDIA Tegra 2 chipset onboard, but at the time of release it was powered by Android 2.2, as 3.0 had yet to hit the market. Naturally, early adopters of the device assumed that Google's tablet specific operating system would eventually make its way onto the gTablet... but that has just not been the case. While ViewSonic has released several updates to the device to bring things like Adobe Flash support and certain GUI enhancements, the tablet is still powered by none other than Android 2.2.
ViewSonic is attempting to somewhat justify its update stance by stating that "the product was advertised and sold as an Android 2.2 tablet and we continue to support it as such." To add to that, the company went on to say "in releasing the gTablet with hardware well ahead of its time, ViewSonic may have set certain unrealistic expectations; the gTablet was never advertised as or intended to be anything other than an Android 2.2 tablet."
Of course, ViewSonic is not entirely to blame for the inability to update the gTablet to any variant of Honeycomb, even if the desire was there at one point: Google never released the source code. Unfortunately, without the source, it's nearly impossible to bring a fully working Android 3.x build to the device on any sort of an official level.
ViewSonic still stands by its product, though; stating that the gTablet "is, and always will be, supported by the company" -- just not in the way that many of its users may agree with.
There is light at the end of the tunnel, though. This device will continue to receive much love from the development community, just as it has up to this point. Once Google releases the source code for Ice Cream Sandwich, we should be able to turn all eyes to the amazing Android dev community and watch as they work their magic and breathe new life into this product once again.
In my opinion, this is less a tale of yet another manufacturer not updating its products appropriately, but more an affirmation of why our community is as well-loved, needed, and incredible as it is.
To get involved in the conversation, head over the ViewSonic's Facebook page, where it has enabled a discussion board for all comments, questions, retorts, and the like.