HP TouchPad Tablet: From Promising Future to $99 Firesale

HP introduced the TouchPad with much fanfare back in February and began selling the tablets in June. It’s crown jewel was the webOS system, which they obtained after acquiring Palm for $1.2 bill...
HP TouchPad Tablet: From Promising Future to $99 Firesale
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HP introduced the TouchPad with much fanfare back in February and began selling the tablets in June. It’s crown jewel was the webOS system, which they obtained after acquiring Palm for $1.2 billion. It was rumored that HP had big plans for webOS, as they saw it eventually migrating to PC’s and possibly into their cloud plans, as they attempted to compete with the likes of Google and Apple.

Flash forward just seven weeks after the TouchPad hit store shelves, and HP has discontinued all webOS devices. This comes on the heels of an announcement where HP is looking to spinoff it’s hardware division and look to reposition themselves as a corporate technology provider.

At the moment you can get a 16GB HP Touchpad at firesale pricing: $99 and a 32GB HP Touchpad for $149 — that is if you can find one.

Currently HP TouchPads are sold out at pretty much everywhere online including: HP, HP Home & Office, Amazon, MicroCenter, Office Max, Office Depot, Radio Shack, Sam’s Club, Target, Walmart, HH Gregg, Best Buy… I could keep going, but I think you get the idea.

Some businesses that didn’t even drop the price are out of stock as well, as some people purchased the tablet at full price hoping to get it price matched later. That’s a pretty hefty risk, as nothing is guaranteed.

There is no denying that people want the TouchPad, as long as it’s for the firesale price. SlickDeals.net currently has ONE thread devoted to the TouchPad which has seen well over 4.2 million views since Friday evening.

The social media manager for HP took to Twitter where she attempted to help people understand that HP was temporarily out of stock. It appears that she was attempting to steer people away from the already crippled various HP .com’s that thrifty shoppers had brought down.

The #hptouchpad is sold out temporarily. We R working on a site where you can sign up & be notified when #HP will have more. PLS RT. 1 day ago via web · powered by @socialditto

4 those just tuning in: All #Touchpads sold out. (USA). More coming. Website being created where u can sign up for alerts. Stay tuned. 1 day ago via web · powered by @socialditto

The alert website for when #touchpad back in stock is in dev as we speak. As SOON as it’s ready and I am made aware, I will share it. 1 day ago via web · powered by @socialditto

For those asking about inventory and pricing outside USA — Fire sale is US only and so is out of stock status. #thatsalliknow 1 day ago via web · powered by @socialditto

Want to know when the #Touchpad is back in stock? Sign up for alerts here: http://t.co/cQkzKCW (please don’t break it!) 😉 1 day ago via web · powered by @socialditto

As you might guess, shortly after this link was shared… the alert site was slowed to a crawl.

Alert site giving busy errors. Sorry! Just the messenger. Keep at it. http://t.co/cQkzKCW 13 hours ago via web · powered by @socialditto

There are some bloggers who are saying shoppers shouldn’t be lured in by the cheap price, as you’re being lead into a dead ecosystem. Specs aren’t what make tablets great, it’s the apps. Bloggers suggest that app developers will abandon webOS as they’d be developing for a dead technology.

Sure, that logic sounds good in theory, but it shouldn’t cause you to not buy a $99 tablet. It’s already been announced that several hacker development groups are hard at work at porting the popular Android OS to the device. If this happens, it will essentially turn your $99 TouchPad into a $500 Android tablet. Not a bad investment if you ask me.

Team #touchdroid… we are porting #Android to the HP Touchpad. Team consists of @ProTekkFZS , @rhcp011235, @Framework43 and me. $99 TPad FTW! 2 days ago via Twitter for Mac · powered by @socialditto

Touchdroid — Android for the HP Touchpad” is currently in progress by a group of hackers. They already have a site in development along with an overview of there plans for porting Android.

Welcome to the official development thread of Touchdroid, by the Touchdroid team. As part of the open Android and RootzWiki communities, we want to make our Android port as open as possible, and providing development insight to all of our users. Since we are just beginning, this threads original post and two or three following posts will be reserved for future use by the team as this will be updated frequently over time. We are attempting to port Android to the HP Touchpad, which was originally shipped with webOS.

  • First going to build with Gingerbread and be AOSP based
  • After we are able to successfully boot Android, we are going to move to a CM7 base
  • Once we reach what we deem a “stable” beta, we will continue to provide bug fixes for Gingerbread build, but also begin working on a full Honeycomb port
  • If ICS is released before or during our development of the Honeycomb port, we will stop and begin work on ICS. (Please be October…)

It’ll be interesting to see over the next few weeks what new developments come out regarding the HP TouchPad. How soon will Android be ported to the device? How cheap will accessories for the device be?

Did you grab an HP TouchPad over the weekend? If so where did you get yours? Let us know in the comments.

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