It was 10 months ago, during the Super Bowl, that Motorola announced the original Xoom to the world. In a 60-second ad that spared no expense, Google and Motorola united to show us their bold new vision for tablets; Honeycomb was going to revolutionize Android and our lives with it, while the Xoom was to be the flagship cresting that wave of change. You know your history, so you're no doubt aware that those grand plans didn't come to fruition.

Motorola's approach with the Xoom 2 is, perhaps as a consequence of its experience with the Xoom, much more cautious, almost taciturn. The upgraded tablet has been put up for sale in the UK with nary a billboard or a late-night commercial to champion it, while its US promotion seems to have been handed off to Verizon, who's been allowed to deface it with the tacky moniker of Droid Xyboard. It wouldn't be unreasonable, therefore, to describe the Xoom 2 as the product of a company in a holding pattern. Moto clearly doesn't feel comfortable being an also-ran in the Android race, particularly not once Google becomes its parent company, but the time has apparently not been deemed correct to introduce the true successor to the extremely ambitious Xoom.

That leaves us with the Xoom 2, a device that slims down, speeds up, and polishes the original Xoom experience, but leaves the attempted revolutions to others. Much-needed upgrades have been made to the camera and display, a new aluminum back makes the Xoom 2 10 percent lighter, and a RAZR-like Splash-guard coating adds some extra resilience against the elements. MotoCast and a sprinkling of other apps come preloaded in an effort to make up for Honeycomb's deficiencies. So, the question that now needs to be answered is whether this incremental upgrade is worth a trip to the nearest Android-friendly tablet store or if we should all just wait for the next Superbowl half-time show.