on 01-25-201009:06 PM - last edited on 08-06-201005:48 PM by ShayFan
We have been bombarded with requests for more information on the slate HP previewed at CES 2010. As you might expect, we won’t reveal the details until it is officially announced and available later this year. What I can tell you is more about our vision for the product and the development process behind it. I cover some of the story in the video below, but I’ll tell you more of it here.
The slate is not new to the HP family. It has existed, in one form or another, behind closed doors for about five years. The original concept was an e-reader device, which I showed off in 2007. During testing, we shared the prototype with 60 customers, and their feedback had a huge impact.
The feedback shared a common, emphatic message: text is not enough. The e-readers of the world, while loved by some, do not give people a rich, multimedia experience. People want to read text plus watch video, see news and magazines in color, access social media content online…you get the picture. The feedback didn’t exactly send us back to the drawing board, but it did make us broaden our vision.
The slate essentially represents a brand new product category that sits between smartphones and netbooks, which we call minis. The only devices currently in this gap are e-readers, which are too focused to support the needs of users who want to enjoy the wide range of rich media available. Slates will be thin, light, touch-enabled multimedia devices with a screen size somewhere between 6 and 10-inches. Think of something the size of a magazine – but better than just a tablet PC with the keyboard removed. More on the new category here.
But why now? A favorite saying of mine is, “The difference between a good idea and a great one is timing.” We could have released a slate two years ago, but it would have cost somewhere around $1,500. Since then, chip and screen advancements have given us the ability to create a product that can hit a size, weight, battery life and price point that will make this product a mainstream offering.
Of course, good hardware is only half the battle; success also depends on great content. Details on content partnerships -- plus information on pricing, configuration, availability and even the name -- will have to wait for another day. I can say that we are working on content partnerships that I think you’ll find exciting. I can also confirm that you will see a slate from HP this year. Stay tuned!