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Apple's iOS and Google's Android aren't the only operating systems choices in the tablet market. HP recently joined the fray with webOS. See how its TouchPad tablet stacks up to the competition and what really sets it apart from the rest of the pack.
In the family of mobile operating systems, Apple’s iOS is the eldest child with a wall full of trophies, while Google’s Android is its younger sibling, trying to prove to dad that iOS didn't get all of the good genetics.
Yet, there is a forgotten middle child: HP’s webOS. First developed by Palm as a successor to Palm OS, HP’s purchase of Palm didn't create as many opportunities for market adoption as originally anticipated. Since webOS’ introduction in 2009, we've only seen a handful of devices with the company's mobile operating system. Within the same period, multiple manufacturers collectively launched a slew of Android-based phones.
The tablet scene also reflects this disparity. Although Motorola’s Xoom was released in February 2011, it represented the first real threat to Apple’s iPad. Previous Android-based tablets all relied on Android 2.3 (Gingerbread), which was originally designed for smartphones. The Xoom introduced us to Android 3.0 (Honeycomb), a version of Google's mobile operating system specifically optimized for the larger-screen tablets.
HP is arriving to this party a little late. Its solution, dubbed the HP TouchPad, is an attempt to carve out a portion of the growing tablet market by offering a second alternative to iOS.