HP using TouchPad to test Windows 8, meeting with webOS buyers? [rumor]
Get your salt shakers ready, folks, because it’s rumor time. Clayton Morris is back with another report from deep inside the bowels of HP, this time claiming that HP is using their supply of ARM-powered HP TouchPad tablets to test the developer preview of Windows 8. Apparently there are internal talks “about reviving the defunct tablets or building new devices with Windows 8 in mind.” Of course, any logical thinking on this matter would conclude that HP will build new devices – they certainly wouldn’t be able to turn around and sell the previously-$99-TouchPad for a few hundred dollars just because it has Windows 8 on it. And that’s assuming it could even run Windows 8 well (the current testing is said to be proof-of-concept).
Additionally, Morris’ “on the webOS team” sources tell him that HP is “actively meeting with a number of interested buyers” for webOS, supposedly to include HTC, LG, Nikon, and Amazon. Of those, HTC has already publicly dismissed webOS and Amazon has been rumored to be in negotiations but has offered no comment on the matter. LG, meanwhile, has yet to be seriously rumored, and Nikon? Where did that come from? They make cameras, scanners, and other optical equipment (including ophthalmological lens – bet you didn’t know that) and have practically zero experience in consumer computing software or hardware. That said, we would love to have a webOS smartphone with Nikon-quality optics in it.
Of course, it’s worth noting that Morris’ two previous major webOS rumors didn’t pan out at all. First there was the palmPad based on the HP Slate 500 Windows tablet and the “eduPad” education-special tablet; then there were “final tweaks” to be made to what eventually came to be known as the TouchPad (which was physically almost exactly like the TouchPad in our leaked design documents). So we’ll see, but we wouldn’t put any money on the TouchPad coming back as a Windows 8 tablet.
And for the record, it’s no shock that HP is working on a Windows 8 tablet. They’ve said from day one of their little webOS experiment that they’re still committed to Microsoft and continue to be one of Microsoft’s biggest vendors. There’s a potentially huge market for Windows-powered tablets (just like there was for webOS, had HP been willing to stick it out), they’d be silly not to try and capitalize on that.
Source: Clayton Morris