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HP Planning to Beat Apple in Tablet Pricing War

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 35 comments

Talk about strategic marketing.

The HP Slate was announced right before the iPad. Clever HP took advantage of all the tablet hype and announced its product right at the beginning of CES. Other companies soon followed; and eventually Apple did announce the iPad later in January. Everyone was shocked that it would start at just $500, as opposed to the rumored $1,000.

Now we learn that HP's Slate PC will be even cheaper. Details about the device are pretty scant; HP is keeping pretty quiet about it. However, we do know that it will run Windows, because Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was actually the person who revealed the product during his keynote speech. The fact that the HP Slate will run a full featured OS is definitely an advantage over the iPad.

Now, a Wall Street Journal report cites sources who say the device will have another advantage; it's going to be cheaper than Apple's iPad. HP nipped things in the bud and announced the Slate before Apple's tablet was revealed. But apparently the computer maker was waiting for the iPad before making some changes to the device, including the price. HP hopes to price the device at under $630; somewhere in the middle of the iPad's price range.

Still no word on a release date the Slate, other than "2010." HP is also said to be making a second version of the Slate that will run Android as opposed to Windows. It's likely that the Android version will be even cheaper. Will you consider buying a Slate? Let us know in the comments below!

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Top Comments
  • 25 Hide
    Gulli , February 18, 2010 1:55 PM
    Sarcasm mode/ Beating Apple at pricing, now there's a challenge... /sarcasm mode
  • 15 Hide
    Anonymous , February 18, 2010 1:57 PM
    A fully featured OS is VERY much an advantage. Anything I can do with my computer at home I'm going to be able to do on my Slate... With Apple Ipad you won't even be able to multitask.
Other Comments
  • -8 Hide
    whiz , February 18, 2010 1:20 PM
    I am not really sure that a full feature OS will be much of an advantage. Manufacturers seem to keep trying to adapt devices to operating systems that are not meant for that form factor and input/output methods. I would say it is a sane time to ask, do we want just a smaller type of computer to run a generic OS, or do we need devices that are optimized to preform certain tasks in their own way. Instead of bending a OS to suit the limitations of and advantages of a certain type of device, manufacturers in my opinion should seek a closer relationship between software and hardware, and through that convergence give products more purpose and make them stand out as unique devices.

    Just my 2 cents.
  • Display all 35 comments.
  • 25 Hide
    Gulli , February 18, 2010 1:55 PM
    Sarcasm mode/ Beating Apple at pricing, now there's a challenge... /sarcasm mode
  • -3 Hide
    dman3k , February 18, 2010 1:56 PM
    Seriously, Jane, more articles on Apple and yet no information on this:
  • 0 Hide
    theholylancer , February 18, 2010 1:56 PM
    While windows 7 isn't designed for tablet, but with the touch pack it is perfectly usable with a touch screen device (maybe not as professional work but that is what third party apps are for).

    I have a acer aspire 5738PG that has a fixed screen with touch input, and it works great when I'm in bed and just use it to browse the internet or to annotate notes in class, but I will not use the virtual keyboard when the real full sized one is just under it.

    And IMO multi-tasking will kill ipad, If I can't listen to music, download a new app, read and annotate a pdf, while the device is doing background tasks like updates, I don't the the touch gimmick will work that much.

  • 15 Hide
    Anonymous , February 18, 2010 1:57 PM
    A fully featured OS is VERY much an advantage. Anything I can do with my computer at home I'm going to be able to do on my Slate... With Apple Ipad you won't even be able to multitask.
  • 4 Hide
    megamanx00 , February 18, 2010 2:01 PM
    Tablet PCs have been around for years and have gone largely unnoticed. It seems that it takes Apples Hype machine to create renewed interest in them. If only the "Crunchpad" hadn't fallen through. Oh well.
  • -4 Hide
    cadder , February 18, 2010 2:14 PM
    I don't think the competition between iPad and HPpad will be on price alone. I think it will be based on "cool factor", apps, who already has and likes the iPhone, etc. It's almost like these devices will be aimed at different markets. OTOH I already have a small portable laptop so I don't need a touch-screen PCpad, they would do basically the same thing. I might find an interest in the iPad because it is a different device with different functionality.
  • 2 Hide
    cookoy , February 18, 2010 2:17 PM
    They announced it first but it's still not released? Only that it will be sometime in 2010. And they're announcing a 2nd version too. Come on. Show us the honey before you talk about the money.
  • 0 Hide
    830hobbes , February 18, 2010 2:19 PM
    Everyone in the world has beaten Apple in the price war. It's stupid to keep trying that tactic. You really just need to develop a sense of snotty superiority that your products magically endow on your customers. At that point they'll buy anything. This won't work, just like it doesn't work for computers. Thankfully Apple's market share doesn't match up with their popularity.
  • -4 Hide
    El_Capitan , February 18, 2010 2:22 PM
    Is anyone actually interested in these tablets? Any particular reason why? If so, what warrants the high price tag that you can't do on an Ipod Touch, netbook, notebook, or desktop?
  • 2 Hide
    gsacks , February 18, 2010 2:34 PM
    GulliSarcasm mode/ Beating Apple at pricing, now there's a challenge... /sarcasm mode

    That's what I was going to say. You beat me to it.
  • 5 Hide
    njalterio , February 18, 2010 3:20 PM
    zelanniiIf HP is running Windows, it;s no comparison. There's no way they're going to get a machine out that can do 720P/1080P video, over wireless, for 10 hours, running Windows, but far more importantly, even if they could, the device form apple is NOT a tablet computer, it;s an instant gratification, always on, media and communication platform. Windows doens't do shit when it's hibernating, the iPad is till communicating, with 30 days of standby time... and it comes on instantly, which Windows also clearly does not do. THAT is what makes the iPad valuable. Further, and HP tables is going to need antivirus, patching, maintenance, and expensive windows application licenses, where the iPad apps can be used on 5 devices and cost an average of a couple dollars. to undercut the app and manitenanve value position, and offset the lack of convenience and gratification of the iPad, the HP tablet would have to be faster at the same tasks (not a faster CPU, but MUCH faster, as windows is a resource hog), and is going to have to have all the GPU performance as well. It would have to be under $300 to be areal value to me, without contract or subsidy, and still offer $29 contract-free pre-paid unlimited network access... ...and Apple has already made public that their price is easily flexible.

    Keep this quote from Abraham Lincoln in mind next time you feel like commenting in any public forum:

    "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."
  • 3 Hide
    jgiron , February 18, 2010 3:23 PM
    Will you consider buying a Slate?

    only if you provide the greenbacks
  • 4 Hide
    JohnnyLucky , February 18, 2010 3:33 PM
    Will not be buying. A pc at work and a pc at home is more than enough.
  • 0 Hide
    doomtomb , February 18, 2010 3:37 PM
    HP Slate looks promising but it has to have enough functionality for me to do some regular computing on.
  • 0 Hide
    ravewulf , February 18, 2010 4:29 PM
    Based on the breakdown of the cost for making the iPad vs the price Apple is asking for it, it's not exactly going to be difficult to beat Apple in price, performance, and usability.
  • -1 Hide
    captaincharisma , February 18, 2010 4:39 PM
    lol of corse HP will beat apple in a pricing war. HP only uses the cheapest crap PC parts in there computers. i would buy an apple PC for the extra money than deal with the headaches of owning a HP PC
  • -1 Hide
    sliem , February 18, 2010 4:48 PM
    Hehe, price war against apple? hm didn't you mean price war against apple+apple tax?
  • 3 Hide
    back_by_demand , February 18, 2010 5:21 PM
    whizI am not really sure that a full feature OS will be much of an advantage

    My motto is
    "Better have it and not need it, than need it and not have it"
    I am watching a few episodes of my fav TV show and friend asks my to drop it onto a USB drive, or even burn it onto a USB DVD.
    Maybe someone emails me an Excel spreadsheet and wants me to amend a few figures, perhaps proof and edit a Word file as well before sending it back.
    I will need fully functional USB ports as well as a copy of MS Office, Nero (or other DVD writer program).
    For this I will need a real OS, not a kids toy.
    If I can get this cheaper than the Apple product, all the better.
    In the retail world, more for less ALWAYS wins.
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