HP unveils $799 tablet with a PC feel

By Reuters
Posted Oct. 22, 2010 at 10:27 a.m.

Hewlett-Packard unveiled its first product for the fast-growing tablet market, a $799 device running Microsoft Windows that is aimed at business customers.

HP’s Slate 500 attempts to replicate the PC experience in a tablet form, providing a contrast to rivals who have brought more of a smartphone feel to their devices. The Slate runs the same version of Windows 7 used by many companies on their standard PCs.

The tablet has a bigger price tag than competing products such as Apple’s iPad, which kick-started the tablet craze when it debuted earlier this year.

HP’s offering has an 8.9-inch, multi-touch-enabled screen, weighs 1.5 pounds and comes with 64 gigabytes (GB) of storage and a digital stylus pen. It gets five hours of battery life.

It comes equipped with Wi-Fi access but no built-in capability to connect to high-speed cellular networks, as rivals including the iPad, Samsung Electronics’ Galaxy Tab and Dell’s Streak have.

Carol Hess-Nickels, director of business notebook marketing at HP, emphasized the Slate’s business utility. She expects retail, healthcare and insurance companies, among others, to build custom applications that take advantage of the device’s portability.

“It’s really like a full-function PC, it runs Windows, it will run your office applications, it just so happens to be in a slate form factor,” Hess-Nickels said.

The HP Slate features the Intel Atom processor, which is commonly found in inexpensive netbook computers. Rival tablets run on low-power ARM-based chips found in smartphones.

The device is equipped with cameras in the front and back, enabling video conferencing, and a USB port. It comes with a case and a docking station.

HP’s Slate is now available online, and the company will be selling it to businesses through its direct sales force.

It’s $799 price tag makes it more expensive than the Wi-Fi-only version of the iPad, which starts at $499 and runs up to $699 for a 64-GB model. A 3G iPad starts at $629.

Verizon Wireless plans to sell Samsung’s 7-inch tablet for $600. Dell’s 5-inch Streak is priced at $550 but can be had for $300 if bought with a data plan through AT&T.


HP, the world’s largest PC maker, plans to release a tablet next year that may look much different from the Slate.

That tablet will be based on the webOS software that HP acquired when it bought smartphone maker Palm earlier this year for $1.2 billion. It will likely be a more media-rich and consumer-friendly offering.

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One comment:

  1. Palm Smartphones Oct. 23, 2010 at 8:03 pm

    The pen can also handle common mouse and keyboard tasks like opening applications, selecting text, and displaying menus. Palm Smartphones