News Analysis: HP's TouchPad is still a few months away from release, but it has the features and design points that could make this tablet the biggest threat to the iPad yet.
has been saying for quite some time now that it has big plans for the tablet
space. And earlier this year, it took the first step in proving that with the
announcement of its TouchPad tablet. The device will include the company's new
WebOS platform, a 9.7-inch display and several other features that HP says will
make it a force to be reckoned with in the tablet market.
course, Apple fans who currently enjoy running their iPads disagree. They see
HP as yet another in a long line of companies that doesn't understand what
today's tablet buyer is after. As a result, they believe in no uncertain terms
that the TouchPad will die an early death as it tries and fails to compete with
their beloved iPad.
those folks might be wrong
. There are undoubtedly several devices in the
tablet space that won't be able to match the iPad 2. But the TouchPad might
prove to be different. In fact, the TouchPad might just be Apple's top
competitor in the mobile market when it launches over the summer.
on to find out why:
1. HP understands the value of hardware
it might have taken it too long to get there,
HP eventually realized the value of a good hardware design
in the computing
space after Apple's MacBooks started flying off store shelves. Now, HP's
laptops are among some of the better-designed PCs on the market. Building upon
that, HP has delivered an appealing design with the 9.7-inch TouchPad. The
device has a nice, black bezel, it's thin and lightweight, and it appears to
have the kind of design points that consumers are looking for in a tablet
design. That alone gives it an advantage over uglier competitors.
2. HP controls software design
secret to Apple's success has been control over its mobile operating system,
iOS. Other companies, like Motorola and Samsung, have been using Google's
Android. HP is a different story. Like Apple, the tech giant has its own,
unique operating system that it controls, WebOS, which it acquired in its
buyout of Palm. That should help it deliver more unique features and offer
updates more quickly than tablet makers that rely upon Android. WebOS could
prove to be central to the TouchPad competing well against the iPad 2.
3. PC plans are important
has also said it plans to bring WebOS to its line of PCs. Considering the
company sells millions of PCs every year, that simple addition could prove
integral to its ability to compete against Apple in the tablet market. After
all, if consumers and enterprise customers try out WebOS on a laptop and like
what they find, they might be far more willing to buy a tablet running the
Bringing WebOS to PCs is a smart move on HP's part
4. The device has the must-have big display
of the reason for Apple's success in the tablet market has been the iPad's big,
9.7-inch display. Too many other companies, like Samsung and Dell, have
delivered devices with small, 7-inch screens that fail to deliver an experience
that consumers want. HP has gone with a 9.7-inch screen of its own in the
TouchPad. It might not be a major addition, but it at least removes one
advantage Apple has enjoyed against many of its other competitors.