HP will likely offer a Windows 8 tablet despite WebOS

By Tom Warren, on 29th Jun 11 6:20 pm with 18 Comments

HP Windows 8 tablet?

HP looks likely to offer its own Windows 8 based tablet, despite using WebOS on its new TouchPad hardware.

HP’s Phil McKinney, president and CTO of HP’s personal systems group, revealed that the company is working closely with Microsoft in a recent interview with Fast Company. “I’m limited to what I can talk about with Windows 8,” McKinney says. “We’re working very closely with [Microsoft], and I’m going to leave it at that or I’m going to start getting myself into trouble.”

Fast Company’s interviewer pushed for more information on a specific Windows 8 tablet and was McKinney mentioned the existing HP Slate 500 device shipping with Windows 7. Richard Kerris, VP of worldwide developer relations for WebOS, also confirmed that anything is possible at HP. “Because of our relationship with Microsoft, anything is possible,” Kerris says. “If we have a huge customer base that says we need a Windows 8 tablet, by all means, we’d listen.”

Both executives downplayed the use of Android in HP products. “We don’t do Android,” said McKinney when questioned over any plans to ship tablets using Google’s Android operating system. Microsoft is currently planning a unique touch based user interface for Windows 8. The new Start Screen, revealed earlier this month, will feature Windows Phone-like tiles and

  • Frylockns86

    Maybe because, deep down, they know WebOS isn’t going to go anywhere. 

    • Anonymous

      Yeah, and they can’t just rely on that platform. HP will really need to compete with their competitors, and to do that they’ll need Windows tablets.

    • Guest

      It’s reportedly a good OS. But it’s unclear whether HP can establish it as a competing ecosystem, which is the minimum bar to succeed today. It’s been a long time since they’ve had experience promoting an HP-branded OS and trying to win the hearts and minds of developers vs competitors. And they were never very good at it. Without strong confidence in the ability to do the latter, this was a pretty insane move. All it does is create a rift with MS, as well as creating an opening for competitors to exploit.

      I know a senior HP manager who, prior to this, told me how much closer the HP/MS relationship had become following Oracle’s purchase of SUN. That makes a lot of sense and could have been big for both companies. Now, if I was Oracle, I’d be spreading FUD in every account about whether or not HP/MS is still a partnership customers can count on.

  • Anonymous

    Dual boot WebOS/Win8 tablets would be interesting.

    • GP007

      It wouldn’t be a new idea either, I own a HP netbook and that thing booted into some HP custom linux thing but I quickly got rid of that crap and went right into Win7.    I think anyone who’s owned one of these like me knows what to expect out of a future HP Win8 tablet. 

    • Guest

      According to HP, that’s not a question of if, just when.

    • http://twitter.com/Joelleigh Joel leigh

      I’d image that Web OS for the PC is still in the works, I’d bet on a HP hub over dual boot.  Contact management, messaging, and email and the ability to purchase and run Web OS apps would be pretty interesting.  Web OS apps are also html css & javascript, at least they used to be.

  • Guest

     “Because of our relationship with Microsoft, anything is possible,” Kerris says. “If we have a huge customer base that says we need a Windows 8 tablet, by all means, we’d listen.”

    Wow, what a huge vote of support. Not! This is why MS needs a new OEM to push W8 on tablets. Otherwise, it’s going to be like WP7: poor OEM support, lukewarm hardware, limited customer demand as a result.

    They obviously can’t depend on either HP or Dell. Even Acer, Lenovo, and Asus are suspect. They need to convince Nokia or someone like that to really get behind a W8 tablet and promote the crap out of it. Even RIM is doing that for theirs. Who can MS depend on to do likewise?

    • http://twitter.com/efjay01 Ef Jay

      Exactly. Its a completely different world now and relying on shoddy far eastern products to showcase your shiny new OS is pure folly (as clearly evidenced by the crap we’ve had with WP7). Go with Toshiba, Fujitsu first and get the fires of desire burning, then allow the plastic crap of Acer, Dell and HP.

    • Joe05

      This is where Nokia could come in, I have the suspicion that a Windows 8 tablet will be the next major move by Nokia, it isn’t hard to imagine Nokia becoming the OEM that build products closely with Microsofts wants and expectations, and Nokia’s hardware quality is second to nome.

  • http://www.appatic.com Avatar X

    Just hope that they actually put them up for global availability. The HP Slate 500, even with its lackluster internals, would have easily moved some hundreds of thousands of units if they wanted it. But they didn’t. I remember there were like 15K people wanting to preorder it left out of being able to do it so on the USA alone.

    Something that also makes me think on how bad ASUS is handling the demand for the ASUS Eee Slate.  IT is sold out everywhere but ebay where it got a 10%-30% of overhead in the price. And that is without they having selling it worldwide and for a product that is minimum 1k. Have been trying to buy one but it is impossible unless it want to pay overhead on the price, the shipping and toss a coin on me having to pay the 17% of import taxes. Sad stuff. Will still try to get one as that one should be easy to upgrade W8 later on too to boot. So it is worth to keep trying.

    • Guest

      Sorry, that for you. Are you talking about the Android one or Windows powered?

    • http://www.appatic.com Avatar X

      The Windows 7 one, the one with 12.1″ screen, the Wacom support and active digitizer.  The Asus Transformer (Android) it is actually for sale globally and shockinly costs not only the same that in the USA, but actually 5%-10% LESS. It almost tempted me. But the fact it got a 10.1″ screen it is a turn off for me. But it is indeed without a doubt the best Android Slate out there for both price and utility thanks to the detachable keyboard, SD slots and extra-long battery life. If you like Android, that is the one you should go with.

    • Guest

      Got it. Thanks. Not familar with that one. Will look into it further.

  • Guest

    Are you talking about the Android one, or something Windows powered?

  • http://www.about.me/AngeloGopaul Eingoluq

    That mock-up looks gorgeous. Windows 8 is a wonder!

  • Frylockns86

    I have to say, I’m surprised Tom didn’t use the HP Slate pics floating around for the mock-up. The current one above would make on ugly Windows 8 tablet. :S

  • Anonymous

    Good. The world’s largest PC maker would be ignorant to try to ignore the world’s largest PC software manufacturer.