Expected to launch this Summer, the TouchPad is the latest entry into the tablet PC market from computing giants Hewlett Packard.
Based on what is currently known about the TouchPad, can it hope to compete with the other tablets for sale such as Apple, Motorola and Blackberry for a share of this fiercely competitive market?
The hardware specifications of the TouchPad would indicate that it at least has the tools to compete. It’s screen measures 9.7 inches and is highly responsive and a pleasure to use.
The TouchPad makes use of a dual core 1.2GHz processor which is faster than those found in both the iPad 2 and the Xoom. True multitasking is also achievable meaning switching between active applications is quick and smooth.
One drawback is that the TouchPad features only one front facing camera for video calling. The lack of a rear facing camera could be a turn off for some as taking snapshots with a front facing camera is difficult, if not impossible to do.
HP has upgraded it’s webOS operating system for the TouchPad. WebOS 3.0 is an upgraded version of the system designed with tablet computing in mind. 3.0 is an effective and easy to use operating system and truly comes into it’s own if paired with a webOS enabled mobile device.
However, whilst the range of applications that come preloaded onto the TouchPad are functional and designed primarily with business use in mind, the limited range of third party developer support could be a hinderance.
It remains to be seen whether developers are prepared to invest in developing for at least 3 separate tablet operating systems. Since Apple and Android tablet are the two clear market leaders, webOS could end up being largely ignored.
Overall the TouchPad is a perfectly competent entry in the tablet market which may be more appealing to business users. If HP can make the TouchPad competitive on price, consumers will have another excellent option to consider.