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HP Slate
First Courier, now HP's Slate as well?

Is everyone just giving in to Apple now? Yesterday, we reported that Microsoft is abandoning its internal Courier dual-screen tablet concept. The Courier was to use dual 7" screens and rely on both pen and touch input.

Now HP is killing off its Windows 7-based Slate before it even hits the market according to TechCrunch. If you recall, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer made a big deal about HP's Slate at this year's CES in Las Vegas. Ballmer actually brought a prototype device out on stage with him during his keynote address to the tech community.

TechCrunch's sources reveal that HP is simply unimpressed with Windows 7 as a platform for a touch-based tablet device. HP is also said to be nixing the idea of using Intel's Atom processors for any future Slate devices due to demanding power requirements.

The latter point is quite poignant as it is one of the negatives that HP pointed out in company slides comparing the Slate to Apple's successful iPad. Apple's iPad is good for 10 to 12 hours of real world use thanks to its lightweight iPhone OS and power sipping A4 processor. HP, on the other hand, lists the Slate's battery life at 5+ hours when running on a 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor (Z530). The relatively poor battery life of the Slate comes despite the fact that it packs a 30 Wh battery while the iPad features only a 25 Wh battery.

With Windows 7 and Intel now apparently out of the picture, that leaves Android/webOS and ARM processors for future Slate devices. HP said on Wednesday that it would be "doubling down on webOS" and that it would "scale it across multiple connected devices".

Considering that many have been somewhat unimpressed with Palm's recent hardware -- namely the Pre and Pixi -- but adore webOS, it would be quite interesting to see what HP can do with a tablet based on its newly acquired operating system and speedy ARM hardware.



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Hmm...
By Ard on 4/30/2010 10:11:54 AM , Rating: 2
While I'm somewhat surprised to see the Slate killed off, it makes perfect sense in light of the Palm acquisition. HP has already said they're committed to webOS, particularly as it relates to tablets, so there's no need for Win7. Shifting focus away from Intel to ARM allows them to use webOS without having to worry about getting it to work with x86 (probably wouldn't be too difficult but the move still saves time/resources), in addition to getting better battery life and comparable performance.

Sad that we'll have to wait a bit longer for a competitor to the iPad, but if HP does this right, a webOS based Slate should be infinitely better than a Win7 based Slate.




"We don't know how to make a $500 computer that's not a piece of junk." -- Apple CEO Steve Jobs














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