16GB tablet to sell for $399.99; 32GB available at $499.99
PC maker Hewlett-Packard (HP) has slashed prices of its TouchPad tablet computers by $100 within two months of release.
In July, the Palo Alto, California-based company had launched its TouchPad priced at $499.99 for a 16GB model and $599.99 for a 32GB model. After the price revsion, the 16GB tablet will now sell for $399.99, while the 32GB model will cost $499.99.
In March, Apple had slashed the price of its Wi-Fi iPad2 from $429 to $399.
HP had first announced the TouchPad in February. The tablet features the WebOS operating system, acquired as part of its surprise $1.2bn deal for veteran mobile maker Palm back in 2010..
While some analysts believe the move is a part of the company’s wider strategy to snatch a significant part of the tablet market pie, HP has said that the price cut was a regular price revision.
An HP spokeswoman said. "HP continually evaluates pricing for its products and is pleased to permanently extend its back-to-school promotion on the H.P. TouchPad."
At present, the tablet market is led by market creator Apple, with Samsung and RIM’s BlackBerry as other players.
At its recent Worldwide Developer Conference Apple announced it had sold 25 million iPad in just 14 months. The release of the iPad 2 has given sales a shot in the arm; up to the end of March it had sold 19.48 million iPads, with a further 5.5 million being shifted between then and its WWDC announcement.
However, HP believes the WebOS will help its tablet devices beat competition.
The company has said that TouchPad will reach to the top of the tablet market, just as its PCs reached the number one spot in the PC market.
"What makes HP TouchPad a compelling alternative to competing products is webOS," said Jon Rubinstein, senior vice president and general manager, Palm Global Business Unit, HP.
"The platform’s unmatched features and flexibility will continue to differentiate HP products from the rest of the market for both personal and professional use. This is only the beginning of what HP’s scale can do with webOS."
Earlier, speaking at a press conference in Cannes, HP European head Eric Cador had claimed that the company’s ambition was to lead the tablet market started by Apple.
Cador had said, "In the PC world, with fewer ways of differentiating HP’s products from our competitors, we became number one; in the tablet world we’re going to become better than number one. We call it number one plus."
Cador had said the company will find a way for its tablet device to reach the top through consumer experience, branding and marketing.
Cador had added that "Only one company plays in both the consumer and business and world. We tend to talk about technologies. But the way the user is going to look at tablets means it’s about experience.
"The way the corporate is going to look at it is to say that its employees, who are also consumers, have got to like it and it’s got to be secure. We’re going to deliver that.
"Beyond that, it’s about marketing and branding," Cador had said at the conference.