Hewlett-Packard, reinvigorated by its purchase of Palm and its heralded WebOS, is confident it can enter the tablet space late in the game and not only contend, but overtake the iPad’s number one spot as well.
At recent press conference in Cannes, HP’s Matt Cador explained that HP was able to become the top selling PC manufacturer as there became fewer and fewer ways for hardware companies to differentiate their products. Similarly, Cador explained, HP’s upcoming Touchpad will also become the top selling tablet.
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.
“Number one plus.” Cute.
HP’s Touchpad (original name by the way) is set to launch this Summer but may find it a tougher market to crack that in bargained for. The analogy to the PC market is misguided at best. HP is entering a fast maturing market where the real battle is currently being fought between Apple and Google. Given Palm’s inability to do much of anything with WebOS, it seems inherently unlikely that HP will have significantly better luck.
The Touchpad will launch with flagship apps from Last.fm, Sky, and the Guardian, but it will need a helluva lot more developer support to really combat the 65,000 apps that have been expressly designed for the iPad. Toss in the surprisingly successful RIM Playbook launch – in the face of critical reviews – and one has to wonder if there’s even any room for HP in this space at all.