Windows 8

HP to revive the TouchPad as a Windows 8 tablet?

The HP TouchPad's enduring legacy may be how many times it returned from the dead. Here's the latest report of its revival.

The HP TouchPad may have yet another life. Hewlett-Packard is testing Windows 8 on TouchPad hardware, according Clayton Morris from Fox Business News.

Here's what Morris reported

Sources at HP tell me the hardware team has been busy doing proof of concept work testing Windows 8 Preview Edition on the fire sale devices. Internally there's been discussion about reviving the defunct tablets or building new devices with Windows 8 in mind... Layoff notices are also on hold as HP assesses former CEO Leo Apotheker's decision to shutdown the PC division. Part of that assessment includes WebOS. Sources on the WebOS team tell me that HP is actively meeting with a number of interested buyers including HTC, LG, Nikon, and Amazon.

Hewlett-Packard's TouchPad offered a lot to like as a productivity device for business users, as I noted in my review in June, but sluggish sales led HP to quickly pull the plug on it in August. However, a price drop to $99 caused the TouchPad to become a runaway hit, as buyers couldn't get enough of them in the fire sale.

It shouldn't come as a surprise that HP would be considering a re-entry into the Windows tablet market, if it stays in the PC hardware business. The company was Microsoft's top partner during the Tablet PC era before it bought Palm and tried to go it alone in the tablet market.

As interesting as Windows 8 is starting to look as a tablet OS, I can't say that I'm that excited about the idea of Win8 running on the TouchPad hardware. The hardware itself was nothing special. In fact, it was the biggest thing holding back the TouchPad. The WebOS software with its elegant multitasking was what I was really impressed with. In fact, the WebOS on iPad hardware -- with a robust app catalog -- would probably be my ideal tablet.

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Jason Hiner is the Global Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Global Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He is an award-winning journalist who writes about the people, products, and ideas that are revolutionizing the ways we live and work in the 21st century.

4 comments
desilvav
desilvav

HP should focus on doing what it does best. Shut down.

Vulpinemac
Vulpinemac

HTC has clearly announced an interest in purchasing an OS, and Amazon seems quite happy with the version of Android they're playing with for the Kindle Fire, which leaves only LG and Nikon the question marks in this list. LG is a known feature-phone maker who seems quietly happy with their Android market, though like HTC they could be concerned about Google's purchase of Motorola Mobile. But Nikon? What purpose would a camera company have for a mobile OS? Still, this statement in general implies some shifting in the OS environment in the upcoming months which could have a major effect on the OS market as it currently stands. Jason, I think you overlooked a far more important bit of news here.

adornoe
adornoe

make sure that they have a bigger and better bundle to work with, which would make it more valuable, for either keeping or for selling. Windows 8 will see a lot of companies wanting to join in the new paradigm of computing, and there will be a lot of manufacturers wanting to get in on the game.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

I just can't see it, but I agree that it's the most puzzling and interesting to consider.

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