As per the latest news, HP has firmed up plans to launch the Slate Tablet PC sometime in June and has released videos that aims to bring out the Slate’s superiority over Apple’s iPad. For the un-initiated, Slate is HP’s offering in the Tablet PC segment and is being brought on as a counter to the iPad. HP is pretty confident that even though Slate will be joining the party late, a full 2 months after the launch of iPad and allowing iPad to build on the initial lead, the Slate will be superior in design and features providing a better value for money product to buyers than the iPad.
All this in spite of the fact that the iPad is being lapped up by buyers like anything and Apple is hard pressed to meet buyer demands right now. In fact, such is the craze for this device that its international launch has been deferred and Apple has run out of stocks to even clear the current rush. Sure there are reasons behind this madness as the iPad is currently the only offering in the touch screen segment. Then the iPad can boast of features that none can match as of now, like complete e-book integration, better reach to the Apple’s app store along with so much more. And with a decent price tag of $499 for the base version, it’s no wonder the big impact that it has created.
Of course HP would like to have a pie of this lucrative segment that is fast becoming popular and among the many contenders who are out to compete with Apple, HP has a better standing in the tech world. Needless to say, to beat the competition it will try to cover up the features which are currently missing from the iPad. The trust that HP enjoys in the PC segment will also add further strength in its move against the iPad. To put it simply, the Slate is going to be the product worth waiting for.
Presented here are 10 ways the Slate can play spoilsport to the grand Apple party.
1. Looks – Apple iPad’s design is indeed alluring and it has proved again that it takes special care in designing products that appeal to its consumers. Worth noticing is the fact that at the same time, HP too is creating the Slate with looks and feel that’s quite similar to the iPad. So there’s no reason why the Slate will not be liked by its users.
2. Operating System – You cannot miss out on a very essential feature of the Slate, that it will be running on the Windows 7 operating system when it is launched in the market. Windows 7 is the latest OS from Microsoft and is touted as the OS that has been built mainly for touchscreen based devices. The iPad on the other hand is running a version based on the iPhone operating system which is why many are referring to the iPad as a big iPod Touch.
3. Support for Adobe Flash – To many, the biggest drawback of the iPad is its incompatibility with Adobe Flash, which means one won’t be able to take full advantage of the World Wide Web. Today most of the superior websites use Flash and web videos are developed around it, which perhaps makes it imperative for any tablet built today to be compatible with Flash. That’s exactly what HP Slate has come up with and hence, you can browse any website with it. The same can’t be said of the iPad though there are some reports emerging that the iPad is compatible, at least to some extent, with Flash.
4. HP delayed release – To release a product later than its competitor is generally not considered to be the perfect way of doing business. But then, this often proves to be a blessing in disguise and in its battle with the iPad, this might well prove to be the case with the Slate. As the iPad is first to enter the fray, its competitors will have a good idea of what its pros and cons are and will have enough time to make necessary amends. So by the time Slate makes it to the market, consumers are most likely to get a complete product which includes all the features that iPad has or does not.
5. Corporate utility – Most of the tablet PCs are usually meant for consumers. But in case any company wishes to provide a Tablet PC to its employees, it’s the Slate that might turn out be the natural choice for the simple reason being that the Slate runs on Windows 7. Since the Windows OS is popular with companies the Slate therefore will be compatible with many of the applications which companies use in their day to day functions. So Slate is on a better footing in terms of higher compatibility in the corporate segment.
6. Marketing – HP is really working hard to grab attention of the consumers and giving tough competition to Apple’s commercials which usually has better perception among its audience in terms of its quality AD campaigns. A recent HP’s You Tube teaser video campaign delivering a very appealing half a minute spot can be an indication of the things to come.
7. Experience – While Apple always wishes to see itself as an innovative company having a forward vision and with others only playing a catch up game, HP too has made its intentions clear in matching up to Apple in this aspect. Whether its with functions and features to a multitouch screen, HP too is willing to offer a product that not only is better than the iPad but is also able to provide a higher degree of experience consistently.
8. Read Books – Microsoft chief, Steve Ballmer did boast of many features available in the Slate at CES this January, which included its ability to function as an e-reader. This means you can read e-books similar to Apple’s iPad which was promoted as a Kindle Killer. So e-reader users who were thinking of upgrading to a Tablet PC will have one more option to consider in the form of the Slate.
9. Connect with Ease – One of the highlights of HP Slate would be its superior connectivity features. Whether as an individual or a corporate user who wants to connect to flash drive, printer or other devices, HP Slate provides a USB port which can be used to connect to external devices. So HP Slate users need not buy any additional accessory unlike iPad, which is quite a unique selling proposition for HP.
10. Multitasking – The iPad can do only one job at a time, which to many is considered quite a handicap. The Slate scores in this respect, as it is able to run several applications simultaneously so that you can listen to music while reading an e-book.
So Apple has its task cut out if what is being said of the Slate indeed proves to be true.
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Sovan Mandal is the senior tablet and tech corespondent for goodereader.com. He brings a international approach to news that is not just applicable to the North American market, but also Asia, India, Europe and others. Sovy brings his own writing flavor to the website and is interested in Science Fiction, Technology and Writing. Any questions, send an email