While it seems each day brings a new HP tablet rumor — whether it be the Android-powered Zeen, Win 7 Slates, or the PalmPad — HP has said very little publically about the company’s tablet plans.
That finally changed this week when HP VP Todd Bradley claimed during HP’s Q3 earning call that the company is working on tablets and plans to release them soon. “You’ll see us with a Microsoft product out in the near future and a webOS-based product in early 2011,” he said.
This isn’t the first time Bradley has been heard speaking about the HP webOS tablet and a Q1 release. In early August, a tipster alerted Engadget that Bradley made a similar claim about the supposed PalmPad during an employee meeting, calling it “Hurricane,” which is an internal reference to the tablet within HP.
Not much is known is about the webOS tablet in terms of specs. Bradley claimed in July during a conference that it would be a consumer device, while the Windows 7 tablets would be more geared toward the enterprise class. At the same event, Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein added, “yes, there will be flash,” in regards to the webOS tablet, an obvious shot at the Apple iPad, which does not support the Adobe technology.
The webOS is the latest version of long-revered Palm OS. It supports multi-tasking and wireless synching with cloud and online services, including Google and Microsoft Exchange. It is also open to third-party application development and has a relatively small (when compared to the iTunes App Store or Android Market) but growing number of apps.
A Q1 release means the webOS tablet should be on display at CES. Here’s hoping it doesn’t suffer the same fate as the HP Windows 7 tablet PC unveiled at last year’s event, which is fast becoming vaporware.