HP said to have scrapped Windows 7 slate

Yesterday, we talked about HP’s plans for slates and other devices running the newly acquired Palm webOS platform. What we didn’t know is that, allegedly, HP has gone ahead and canned the Windows 7-powered slate Steve Ballmer demonstrated at CES in January. So says TechCrunch, quoting a "source who’s been briefed on the matter."

TechCrunch says HP may have gone so far as to rule out the use of Intel hardware altogether for its slate devices—simply because "it’s too power hungry." (Naturally, the lack of an Intel processor pretty much rules out any full-featured edition of Windows.)

Now that HP has webOS in its grasp, redesigning the slate’s internals around some sort of ARM microprocessor core seems like a given. According to Wikipedia, Palm’s Pre—the flagship webOS device—has a system-on-a-chip with an ARM Cortex A8 microprocessor core and PowerVR SGX integrated graphics. Coincidentally, the Apple A4 chip that powers the iPad also happens to have a Cortex A8 and PowerVR SGX GPU. Apple claims up to 10 hours of battery life for the device, which might not be all that difficult for HP to match using a similar form factor and similar internals.

Considering HP remains the world’s top PC vendor, dropping Windows 7 from its slate device could hurt Microsoft’s chances in that market—especially since some other companies, including Asus, are cooking up tablets based on Google’s Android platform. With Windows marginalized, hardware makers might have less of an incentive to opt for Intel’s Atom chips instead of ARM-derived SoCs, as well.

Comments closed
    • mutarasector
    • 13 years ago

    Actually, my guess would be lan Ontario based “oPad”… ;-).

    • Buzzard44
    • 13 years ago

    Sorry guys – she’s saving herself exclusively for me.

    And Anakin, but that was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.

    • BlackStar
    • 13 years ago

    Not to mention much better drivers and 3d support.

    • KoolAidMan
    • 13 years ago

    Can’t speak for him but IMO they pretty much suck

    • MadManOriginal
    • 13 years ago

    I believe the solution is not to be so ‘enthralled’ with yet another device. You’ve managed so far without it so what’s the big deal? I’ve bought a few things where I thought ‘Wow! that would be cool to have’ and I just end up not using them very much – it was more the idea of the thing than the use that I was into and then I felt like I was obligated to use it so it wasn’t a waste of money.

    Then again I suppose I should support consumerism since it supports the economy. I’ll choose to limit my consumerism and avoid the hollowness and temporary fix of consumer pleasure.

    • Sahrin
    • 13 years ago

    I can’t believe this is happening. After becoming totally enthralled by the iPad, every competing product I was interested in has now been cancelled. I find myself turning to the worst of all the alternatives – the iPad itself!

    My fear is that the cancellation of Slate and to a lesser extent Courier are related to a terrifying realization on the part of MS and HP: there’s no reason their new hardware can’t use the same kind of platform Apple does for the iPad. Closed platforms will always make far more money than open ones on a profit per dollar basis. What’s the incentive to make a open platform – they’d just be going into the marketplace with a feature the market has already determined they don’t want (naively so that it may be).

    *sigh* I don’t want an iPad, but I want an iPad. ‘Tis a sad day indeed.

    • Usacomp2k3
    • 13 years ago

    I take it you’re not a fan of netbooks or nettops?

    • Sahrin
    • 13 years ago

    I think we’re thinking Llano – which would actually kick ass as a tablet CPU (and should fit in the thermal envelope too – with *much* better performance than unicore Cortex + PowerVR or Imageon knockoff).

    • eitje
    • 13 years ago

    I have a tablet PC that was built in the mid-2000s running Windows 7.

    • eitje
    • 13 years ago

    If this works out for HP, then that’s basically the nail in Dell’s coffin.

    • leor
    • 13 years ago

    good. maybe atom will die a well deserved death. talk about taking a step in the wrong direction.

    • fyo
    • 13 years ago

    /[

    • StashTheVampede
    • 13 years ago

    Cutomized ARM hardware experience, customized OS for such hardware AND a marketplace for apps.

    It’s ALL the makings to compete with Apple and Google. Apple has the complete stack (like Palm did) and Google has stayed out of true hardware development. HP now has it all.

    • eitje
    • 13 years ago

    wow. I wonder if the Palm purchase was literally just so that HP could pole-vault into the world of ARM SOCs and interfaces built exclusively for touch-screens.

    • wira020
    • 13 years ago

    Lol, good point.. Bobcat slate anyone?

    • stdRaichu
    • 13 years ago

    Don’t the iPhones and iPad use a Samsung/PowerVR graphics chip? Whilst HP might not have the in-house talent to massage PowerVR’s graphics into shape in the same way Apple has, their acqusition of Palm may be of alot of help in that regard, as the Treo and the Pre both also use PowerVR chipsets.

    • sreams
    • 13 years ago

    “Naturally, the lack of an Intel processor pretty much rules out any full-featured edition of Windows”…

    Yeah, too bad I have AMD processors and can only run BASIC. 🙁

    • crazybus
    • 13 years ago

    Those expecting a $1000 price tag were probably also expecting much higher hardware capability. To be fair, I don’t think x86 compatibility is necessary or even all that desirable in a slate device, but iPad pricing is maybe even a little high for the hardware. I think the 32GB model pricing could be where the 16GB is now.

    • Trymor
    • 13 years ago

    Maybe higher adoption rates will force them to get there act together or die…

    Try

    • 5150
    • 13 years ago

    No kidding, I think we can all agree her mom is a failure.

    • NeelyCam
    • 13 years ago

    I gotta go get an iPad today, to see what the deal is.

    • NeelyCam
    • 13 years ago

    Seconded.

    • OneArmedScissor
    • 13 years ago

    Have you ever tried an MP3 player that took one to several minutes after you turned it on before it could start playing a video or song?

    • tay
    • 13 years ago

    And I would like to bone Natalie Portman.

    • Duck
    • 13 years ago

    Tegra 2 !!

    • esterhasz
    • 13 years ago

    yep, got Win7 on my backup machine, a HP 311c. takes a minute to boot, firefox + plugins starts in 10s, chrome + plugins takes about 5s. that’s OK for a laptop, but it ain’t making the cut on a device that’s supposed to graciously slip into the ever pulsing flow of informational convenience… a tablet is halfway between classic and ubiquitous computing and if the computer part doesn’t disappear at least somewhat into the background the whole paradigm doesn’t work… a full featured OS like Win7 rips you back into computing all the time… the iPhone OS’s simplicity and lack of computing features makes the iPad react nearly instantly to most tasks, and the app paradigm is cognitively so undemanding that the whole experience has the lightness a tablet requires…

    • jdaven
    • 13 years ago

    The war is far from over indeed. Can’t wait to see what these tech giants come out with next.

    • dpaus
    • 13 years ago

    I’ll bet the folks at DataViz – who recently snubbed WebOS for their Docs2Go package – have now cancelled all vacations and ordered mandatory overtime until it’s released – hopefully before a (potentially superior) alternative can get a foothold.

    • Trymor
    • 13 years ago

    Here! Here!

    l[

    • NeelyCam
    • 13 years ago

    I see everything. I’m a little surprised.. I wonder what happened? Somebody f*cked up some powergate design somewhere?

    Yeah, well, I’m still waiting for Medfield, or Penwell, or whatever it’s called today. War is not over yet…

    Superior process is superior.

    • tay
    • 13 years ago

    Bullshit!! Just wait, the Courier is going to kick ass!! ipad is for feminine hygiene. My vaporware is better than your vaporware!!

    • dpaus
    • 13 years ago

    After Bristol Graphics, I would’ve thought they’d change their ways…

    • Forge
    • 13 years ago

    Courier and Slate were two implementations of the same idea.

    This is classic MS, they’ve been using this tactic since the late 70s. If your competitor (Apple) is releasing a product (iPad), announce your better, faster, nicer, cheaper version (Slate and Courier), and reassure everyone that it will be available Real Soon Now. Watch competitor’s sales slump, collapse, or end entirely. Once damage is done, quietly “cancel” the promised product, which you may not have ever even intended to research.

    I’m actually surprised that people actually expected MS to deliver the vapor this time. Jesus people, how many times will you fall for the same schtick? Buy what’s OUT, not what’s ANNOUNCED!

    • blastdoor
    • 13 years ago

    I must admit — this surprises me. But I think it’s a good move. If the Palm purchase is going to work, then HP needs to commit unequivocally to WebOS, which means no hedging with Windows.

    • Shining Arcanine
    • 13 years ago

    I wonder if chairs are flying at Redmond.

    • Corrado
    • 13 years ago

    Pro apps need to be designed from the ground up for a touch screen interface. Try using illustrator with your finger. The UI just isn’t made for it, especially on a relatively low resolution screen.

    • Corrado
    • 13 years ago

    These are even slower clocked than the normal 1.6+ghz atoms. They’re usually running on 1.1 and 1.2ghz Atoms. Coupled with the fact that they’re trying to ALSO do touch screen processing for multi-touch, etc, and you’ve got a recipe for slowness when you’re trying to be instant on, and have everything be as responsive as possible.

    My netbook is OK, but after using my iPad, I don’t think I’d like it as a tablet device.

    • jdaven
    • 13 years ago

    Yes but they are not prevalent, not touch optimized, many are just prototypes and none are as thin as tablets need to be.

    • thecoldanddarkone
    • 13 years ago

    Huh? We already saw x86 processors in smaller form factors than netbooks. UMPC’s.

    • just brew it!
    • 13 years ago

    PowerVR graphics may end up being an albatross around their neck. I currently work in the embedded market; and while the hardware looks decent on paper, the software/drivers situation for Imagination Technologies GPUs ain’t pretty.

    • Decelerate
    • 13 years ago

    Yes but HP was a great name to comoditize the category.

    Small companies (like JooJoo’s) don’t have the same market effect.

    I’m not saying that the iPad is the be-all end-all of slate devices, but like the iPhone’s appearance, many geeks underestimate its impact and the speed at which competitors can conjure up competitors.

    • Hattig
    • 13 years ago

    I expect that Palm did have an in-house tablet project, probably using a next generation TI Omap processor with two ARM Cortex A9s inside. It could probably be made and sold for under the price of the iPad, depending on the size of the screen, simply because it isn’t Apple selling it, and maybe the screen will be a cheaper TN based display.

    I wonder if this week will be remembered as the week that Atom died.

    • crsh1976
    • 13 years ago

    Hm, have you even ever tried Win 7 on a lowly Atom-powered netbook? It runs very smoothly, never had so much as a hick-up.

    • esterhasz
    • 13 years ago

    oh come on! anybody who’s ever smelled the flowery bouquet of the consumer convenience behemoth, indeed, the legitimate computing equivalent of the remote control that is the iPhone OS, can only laugh at the idea of a win7 tablet. and on an atom for the good lord jesus’s sake! like you’re gonna boot up your tablet for a minute to read the NYT headlines when you go to the bathroom, completely absurd. that slate was a sad joke before the iPad came out and now it’s like WinMob 6.5 or, apparently, Symbian 3, the wrong dance move for the music playin’. That train has left the station and if there’s every going to be a successful tablet running on any kind of microsoft OS it’s going to be a derivative of the winphone7…

    Win7 slate, hilarious…

    • trackerben
    • 13 years ago

    Boredom in PC-centric land had me getting an ipad on the first day. I’ve grown to like it, my first Apple system since my old II+.

    I’m now in the perverse situation of recommending Apple’s latest to skeptical mac users – the same people who dismissed the thing as an oversized Touch and advised me to wait for the HP slate…

    • crsh1976
    • 13 years ago

    I’m sure it will be reborn with either WebOS or ChromeOS down the line, but I’m really not in love with the lightweight mobile OSes to run casual apps and was hoping we’d finally see a solid device running a desktop OS with normal (pro) applications.

    • jdaven
    • 13 years ago

    This link is for Neelycam if he sees it.

    §[<http://www.engadget.com/2010/04/30/confirmed-lgs-moorestown-based-gw990-wont-be-made/<]§ Moorestown projects are being canceled left and right. The HP Slate is not being made because Atom is too power hungry and windows 7 is not optimized for these devices. The Courier died as well. I predict that we will not see x86 processors in smaller form factors than netbooks. Netbooks are as low as companies want to go with Atom and Windows. Long live ARM, PowerVR and highly customized OSes from the ground up for battery life and touch interfaces (Android, WebOS and iPhone OS). Down with power guzzling software (i.e. Flash), x86 processors and slimmed down, unoptimized OSes like Windows for phone and tablet devices.

    • dpaus
    • 13 years ago

    What a kick in the nads for Steve Ballmer!

    Like I said in the Shortbread, I’d love to see HPalm bring out a Courier-style device running WebOS. That would be a clear alternative to the iPad.

    • Arag0n
    • 13 years ago

    There is plenty of Android and Win 7 slates arround…. Just because HP won’t build one, doesn’t mean that there won’t be anyone.

    The courier… may come back someday. I can think about microsoft needing at least half year or one year more to fit the requirements to make the courier factible and delaying it. Remember the words… “at this time”. That means that they aren’t saying that they won’t on the future.

    • KamikaseRider
    • 13 years ago

    Everyone was expecting a thousand bucks slate from apple. When it announced the iPad at 500 bucks it blew everyone’s mind. (Even mine).

    • khands
    • 13 years ago

    I think it was the acquisition of Palm that killed the slate more than MS denouncing the courier, which I’m still really bummed about.

    • Trymor
    • 13 years ago

    I wanted the Courier 🙁

    That being said, now HP can give Apple the competition it needs in the segment.

    Try

    • Decelerate
    • 13 years ago

    First Courrier and now Slate…

    Seems the iPad is a better foe (quality/value wise) than many geeks expected

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