When HP releases its $US500 ($A470) 16 GB wi-fi TouchPad in the northern hemisphere next month, it will join a market crowded with competitors and a tough sell to lure buyers away from Apple.
Australian prices and availability of the wi-fi models and when a 3G version will be released are to be confirmed. But the 32 GB wi-fi TouchPad was likely to be about $100 more than its little brother.
It will be the first chance for buyers to judge HP’s webOS 3.0, which the tablet maker hopes will topple the iPad where its rivals failed.
"What makes HP TouchPad a compelling alternative to competing products is webOS," said HP's Palm business unit manager Jon Rubinstein.
But if the experiences of its rivals were an indication, luring buyers away from the iPad was a tall order.
Samsung, Acer, RIM and Motorola all recently cut production of their tablet devices fearing oversupply because consumers showed little interest in anything but Apple’s offerings.
Toshiba was testing the waters with its 10-inch Thrive tablet that would go on sale in Australia at the end of the month for about $400. But the wi-fi-only Android device wouldn’t carry the same name locally, with reports that it will likely be sold as the Toshiba Tablet AT100.
Australia’s largest distie Ingram Micro cut a deal yesterday to distribute RIM including the Canadian company’s much-touted PlayBook tablet, which hits the shelves on June 20 for $579.
The CRN View
But while RIM aimed PlayBook at business users, there were concerns about the lack of applications. And while the inspiration for the name – North American sports slang meaning "game strategy" – was likely to be lost in translation to other markets.
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Issue: 315 | May 2013
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