HP releasing tablet and smartphone based on Android, ditching its own WebOS?

The long-time successful PC manufacturer Hewlett-Packard is said to be giving the post-PC era a second shot with a new handset and tablet that will run Google's Android OS.

According to a report from ReadWrite, HP will release a high-end Android tablet running Nvidia's Tegra 4 chip, with word that it will be announced soon. As for the company's first smartphone, its release could run into next year after comments from HP CEO Meg Whitman which indicate the company has no plans to offer a smartphone in 2013.

This wouldn't be the first time HP has delved into the mobile market. In 2011, shortly after buying Palm, HP launched the Veer 4G running webOS.

It's interesting that HP will ditch the WebOS operating system for Android, but to some degree it does make a bit of sense. Given that Android is now the top mobile operating system worldwide, if HP brings some solid hardware to the table on the right carriers, that could mean big sales. 

Another point worth noting is that HP does have the Palm team, which made some pretty cool products for its time - just failing to take off. Additionally, it experimented with the TouchStone charger, long before wireless charging was a thing.

READ: HP TouchPad review

Ppeaking on a television programme last September, Whitman noted that HP "ultimately has to offer a smartphone" and acknowledged that the company was indeed working on it. She later said 2013 wouldn't be the year. 

Last quarter HP noted a continuing decline in hardware sales. Given where the personal computer market may or may not be heading, it appears HP is realising that it could fall substantially behind if it doesn't start now. 

ReadWrite wasn't able to offer a specific date for the announcement of the tablet, but did note that it will be in the coming months. The Verge offered a bit to the rumour, saying it could confirm the news with sources.

Could HP be on the way to releasing a tablet to finally take on the iPad?



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