After the TouchPad’s failure to capture the market and go on top of the competition presented by the iPad and other popular tablets, Hewlett-Packard is back in the game. This time with an Android-powered tablet they aptly call the Slate 7. Citing CNET and TechCrunch, HP officials announced recently that the product will be released in the US market sometime in April with a $169 price tag. Its release to Europe and the rest of the world will follow soon. However, there is no word yet how much it will cost in the European market and to the other parts of the world.
The Slate 7 has a stainless steel frame and a soft-touch back. It boasts a 16-inch by 9-inch display and a 1,024 x 600 pixel resolution. It has a dual core 1.6GHz SoC processor, 1GB of RAM and an on-board storage of 8GB which can be expanded with the MicroSD slot. The tablet is equipped with two 3-megapixel cameras. One is located at the back and the other is in front for video calling.
This early, there are a lot of critics saying that the Slate 7 will not provide HP with the similar success that its personal computers gave them at the time of its release. Some are saying that it does not work as much as the rival tablets do. Some are even saying that it works as cheap tablets go and that at $169 consumers should not get their hopes up on the new Slate. But the gadget is closely integrated with Google and offers apps such as Gmail, Google Hangout +, Google Now, YouTube and Google Now which would make this affordable tablet appealing to the Google fans who are numbering millions. Aside from the Google apps, HP has added a few of their own apps and features including ePrint and Beats Audio. Perhaps the most appealing feature of the tablet that most people are sure to look forward to is the ePrint app which allows the user to print anything over Wi-Fi connection.
According to CNET, the release of Slate 7 in April ushers in the possibility of HP releasing its own line of Smartphones in the very near future. With the new tablet made to run using the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean software there are a lot of speculations that the Smartphones will also have an Android OS. Also, even as the world awaits its April 2013 release there are already other speculations that HP will be releasing more Android-run tablets in the future. In fact HP officials are already hinting about the possibility of releasing tablets to run on Windows as well.
Hewlett-Packard has been known worldwide as the number 1 manufacturer of personal computers. Its entry to the tablet industry two years ago was not as successful as it competed with the iPad that went viral when it was released. A lot are awaiting the April release of the Slate 7 and are sure to watch how this inexpensive tablet will fare in the market.
Check out the additional photos of the product below, courtesy of CBS Interactive: