HP Slate6 Voice Tab and Slate7 Voice Tab Announced
Hewlett Packard will be entering the smartphone or “phablet” (half phone, half tablet) market this February with the introduction of the HP Slate6 Voice Tab and the HP Slate7 Voice Tab. The 6 and the 7 stand for the size of the screens which will be 6 and 7 inches respectively. The devices will be released only in India at this time and will allegedly come with a price tag around $200 with no contract.
HP Slate6 and Slate7 Voice Tab Specs
Hewlett Packard did not release the specs for the device but according to Ron Coughlin, Senior VP for the consumer PC business revealed in an interview with Re/code the new phablets will boast a 5 megapixel rear and 2 megapixel front facing camera and run on the Android 4.2 Jelly Bean operating system. The device will be super thin at 9mm for the 6′ and 9.5mm on the 7′. It will have 2 front facing speakers. The screens will be a 1280 x 720 IPS display for both devices. HP already has a 7 inch Slate tablet which got pretty good reviews but the Slate6 and Slate7 Voice tabs will provide cellular support.
HP CEO Meg Whitman Promised to get into the Smartphone Market
Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman said it’s only a matter of time before the company returns to the smartphone business in an interview on Fox News in September of 2012. Here is the quote from that interview:
“We have to ultimately offer a smartphone because in many countries of the world that is your first computing device. You know, there will be countries around the world where people may never own a tablet, or a PC or a desktop. They will do everything on the smartphone. We’re a computing company; we have to take advantage of that form factor. … We did take a detour into smartphones, and we’ve got to get it right this time. My mantra to the team is: ‘Better right than faster than we should be there.’ So we’re working to make sure that when we do this, it will be the right thing for Hewlett-Packard, and we will be successful.”
Finally, HP is taking advantage that market in India and they took her mantra to heart. It took them a while but hopefully they did it right. There is no indication where the HP “phablet” will be available next or when for that matter. The opportunity is there for HP to gain market share in these emerging markets where people don’t own a computer, tablet, and a phone. Especially in countries like India where HP is a market leader in desktops.