Google shipping beta on hardware also now

Google has extended shipping beta (and non-working) software on hardware devices also now. Reality check from XOOM release.

Ars reviews the Motorola Xoom

Although the Xoom has a lot to offer, the product feels very incomplete. A surprising number of promised hardware and software features are not functional at launch and will have to be enabled in future updates. The Xoom's quality is also diminished by some of the early technical issues and limitations that we encountered in Honeycomb. Google's nascent tablet software has a ton of potential, but it also has some feature gaps and rough edges that reflect its lack of maturity.

Although the Xoom was designed to support Verizon's new 4G LTE network, support for this network is not enabled out of the box. Consumers will have to ship the device back to Motorola to have it fitted with the necessary components. The 4G hardware upgrade will be available at no cost, but will take 6 business days to complete.

It's not clear yet exactly when Xoom buyers will be able to send in their Xoom to receive the upgrade, but Verizon says that it will be available "shortly" after the product's launch. Reports suggest that "shortly" means within the next 90 days.

LTE isn't the only hardware feature that's not working right out of the box. The Xoom's microSD card slot is also non-functional, due to software issues that are attributed to Honeycomb. Motorola says that the feature will be fixed soon in an over-the-air update. The Xoom's much-touted support for Adobe Flash is also absent at launch and will similarly be delivered in an upcoming software update.