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HP Unveils WebOS TouchPad, PC Plans

HP Unveils WebOS TouchPad, PC Plans

February 9, 2011 | By Eric Caoili

February 9, 2011 | By Eric Caoili

HP revealed a new slate of WebOS-powered products today, including a new 9.7-inch tablet called the TouchPad, and hinted at plans to bring the previously mobile-only operating system, which can be used extensively for games, to PCs.

Scheduled to launch this summer, the Touchpad feaures a dual core 1.2 Ghz Snapdragon CPU, a multitouch display, a 1.3 megapixel webcam, 16GB or 32GB internal storage space, a gyroscope, and an accelerometer -- the last two of which will likely support games on the platform.

It will release first with a WiFi model (802.11 b/g/n), which will be followed by 3G- and 4G-enabled versions afterward. All of the tablet's models will use WebOS 3.0, a new version of the operating system created by smartphone manufacturer Palm, which HP acquired last April for $1.2 billion.

Though WebOS only has a fraction of the audience enjoyed by rival platforms iOS and Android, its games and applications marketplace is big enough to attract major developers and publishers like Electronic Arts, Rovio (Angry Birds), Glu Mobile, and Gameloft, as well as some indie studios.

Along with the TouchPad, HP introduced several new WebOS smartphones, like the Pre3 with an improved touchscreen (3.58 inches, 480 x 800 resolution) and more processing power, and a smaller, lower-powered version of that device called the Veer. Both will ship with WebOS 2.2.

The company also hinted at future plans to bring WebOS to desktop and laptop PCs later this year, as well as printers, according to a report from PreCentral. It hopes to "expand the reach for developers to millions and millions of customers", though it didn't provide additional details on that strategy.

HP has yet to provide specific pricing or release date information for the products unveiled today.

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