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HP Reenters Tablet Market With $169 Android-Based 'Slate 7' as LG Acquires WebOS for TVs

Two years ago, HP was viewed as potential major tablet competitor for Apple and the iPad, with the company's 2010 acquisition of Palm allowing it to debut its webOS-based TouchPad in early 2011. The TouchPad turned out to be a flop, however, until the company lowered pricing to $99 in order to clear out stock, and HP quickly decided to exit the smartphone and tablet markets and turn webOS into an open source project.

hp_slate_7HP is now jumping back into the tablet game, announcing yesterday an April U.S. launch for the HP Slate 7, an Android-based tablet carrying a $169 price tag.
With a 7-inch diagonal screen and weighing 13 ounces, the HP Slate 7 is an ideal trusted personal companion, featuring a stainless-steel frame and soft black paint in gray or red on the back. It also is the industry's first tablet to offer embedded Beats Audio, for the best-sounding, richest audio experience available on a tablet. [...]

Powered by an ARM Dual Core Cortex-A9 1.6 GHz processor, the HP Slate 7 is fast and responsive. Integrated wireless allows customers to access email, the internet and key applications, while the High-aperture-ratio Field Fringe Switching (HFFS) panel offers wide viewing angles that provide easy viewing of documents, games, photos and videos—even in outdoor lighting conditions.

The HP Slate 7 includes a 3-megapixel camera on the back and a VGA camera on the front for chatting, videos and photos.
As noted by The Verge, HP's new Slate 7 is just the first of many tablet models set to launch this year, with HP recognizing that it needs to be in the rapidly growing tablet market if it wants to retake the lead from Apple in the increasingly combined PC/tablet market.
"HP is the number one PC manufacturer in the world, and we want to be the number one computer vendor in the world. That means we need to be in the tablet space."

That's Alberto Torres, the man tasked with making it happen. [...]

"On the tablet side, it's entirely our intent to have a broad set of products on the market... to cover more segments of the market we'll need more products, and you'll see us aggressively pursue that over the year."
HP's return to the tablet market with Android comes just as the company has agreed to sell webOS to LG, which plans to use the operating system for its smart televisions, as reported by CNET.
With the deal, LG obtains the source code for WebOS, related documentation, engineering talent, and related WebOS Web sites. LG also gets HP licenses for use with its WebOS products, and patents HP obtained from Palm. The financial terms of the deal weren't disclosed.
LG remains focused on Android for its smartphones, but views webOS as a promising platform for television. According to an October report from webOS Nation, LG and Gram, HP's subsidiary set up to oversee webOS, had already been working together on the webOS television project, and it now appears solid enough that LG has decided to acquire webOS entirely.

Top Rated Comments

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52 months ago
Amaze your friends during visiting hours at their jail!

Rating: 32 Votes
52 months ago
At least enter the market with a competitive hardware. 1024x600 resolution, 8GB, and a dual-core processor with a $169 price tag? Come on, I would spend $30 more and get a Nexus 7.
Rating: 17 Votes
52 months ago
What is with HP and HTC's obsession with Beats Audio... you've just turned off any potential buyers who want a half decent sounding tablet....
Rating: 11 Votes
52 months ago

How many flagship market changing products has Apple ever had? How many years elapsed between the release of each?

Thank you. I'm so sick of people who have this fanciful belief that apple at some point released a new category-defining product every year. Here's my short list:

Apple II - 1977
Macintosh - 1984
iMac - 1998
iPod - 2001
iPhone - 2007
iPad - 2010

Let's knock out the first two as too old to matter for this analysis (arguably the CRT iMac too, but whatever. Doesn't change the analysis that much). So we're looking at 3-6 years between entirely new product categories. Nothing strange about apple not having a new product line since the iPad.

Also, apple will not and should not race to the bottom. If HP and others want to take a loss turning out cheap crap to get market share, good for them. Apple has never played that game - which is why they have $140b in cash, and dell failed as a public company.
Rating: 11 Votes
52 months ago
Looks like too little too late. Why bother? It should be called S-Late.
Rating: 10 Votes
52 months ago
If I buy a £400 iPad I can access brilliant apps that do really specialised things - I can get an App to tweak MIDI gear for example (Android's MIDI is a basket case) or run a mobile version of my business database, or have pretty realistic guitar amp sims I could even gig with through a power amp, I have solid official apps for my bank where there is none on Android, I have a good range of useful iPad accessories. It works nice alongside my iPhone and Mac.

If I spend £100 on an Android, I'll likely do a spot of surfing then chuck it in a drawer.

£400 for something I'd use the hell out of or a £100 bit of tat? Which is the biggest waste of money?
Rating: 10 Votes
52 months ago

I have sent emails to Tim Cook begging Apple to do something, anything, to counter this rising tide of dissatisfaction among consumers and especially the media and stock analysts.

Boy, I'll bet that's keeping him up late.
Rating: 9 Votes
52 months ago

"mac" rumors?

Clever. Except you didn't pick up that this wasn't a "rumor" either. I suppose you neglected to display the same wit with every single iPhone/iPad article? Those aren't Macs either.

In fact I would wager that only 5-10% of articles on here are actually "rumors" about "Macs".

This site has simply become something for enthusiasts of all things Apple. An important aspect of that is keeping an eye on the competition. If you don't like it you can either not waste time commenting on the articles, or you can try to find a Mac (or Apple) website that doesn't comment on any of the relavent competition in the market. Good luck with that though, because all the ones I follow mention comparisons at least occasionally.
Rating: 9 Votes
52 months ago
Looks like the race to the bottom is on..

THey should've never left the tablet market in the first place (even if they would've substituted Android for Web OS).. They were early in the game, and now they are forced to buy market share with deep discounts.

I think it's too little, too late.. but we'll see.
Rating: 7 Votes
52 months ago
Apple is in big trouble. Maybe not right now, but it's around the corner. Here's why: consumers are beginning to equate smartphones and tablets not just with Apple. For instance, my family sees all tablets as essentially the same. They don't distinguish between Android, Windows 8 and iOS. They just see a tablet or a smartphone. The market is changing. The flooding of the market with cheap Android handsets and competitive 7" tablets is causing Apple to lose the PR battle about whose tablet is best.

In the meantime, the bottom appears to have fallen out of Apple's stock and very little - in fact nothing - new is coming out of Cupertino to give stockholders and consumers hope for the future. iOS has remained stale for the last five years since its introduction, with no desire shown by Apple to improve the user experience - something that is Apple's trademark.

I fear for Apple. Again, not right now, but a year from now. Apple no longer has a flagship "market changing" product and has shown little desire to compete. Microsoft is converging their desktop and mobile operating systems, which is a smart thing to do. Ultimately and in a perfect world, the user experience between desktop and mobile devices should be transparent. We will get there eventually, but who will be leading the pack?

I have sent emails to Tim Cook begging Apple to do something, anything, to counter this rising tide of dissatisfaction among consumers and especially the media and stock analysts.
Rating: 7 Votes

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