Soon after HP announced its acquisition of Palm, executives from the two companies went on record naming slate devices as possible candidates for integration with Palm's webOS mobile operating system. HP has now updated its official Twitter feed with further confirmation of the slate plans, plus news of another candidate:
Hurd: after @Palm close expect to leverage webOS "beyond smart phones into form factors such as slates and web-connected printers" $HPQ
Mark Hurd is HP's Chairman and CEO, so this confirmation comes straight from the top—and it makes the news of upcoming, webOS-toting printers doubly surprising. (Then again, in our latest podcast, TR's Scott Wasson did jokingly inquire how the Palm buyout would fit into HP's printer and ink business. Now we know.)
As MobileCrunch points out, some printers already have little touch-screen interfaces. Take the HP Photosmart Premium TouchSmart Web, for instance: a $300 all-in-one printer with an iPhone-like touch-screen display, through which users can print "Web content like movie tickets, coupons, maps, recipes, and puzzles" without the need for a PC. If HP is going to put webOS on slates and smart phones, upscale printers like that one might not be such a stretch, after all.