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60PRO SCORE
GIVE IT AN OVERALL RATING
3.00699300699301 13 5 0
3.00699300699301
143 VOTES

The Slate is a 8.9" touchscreen tablet PC from Microsoft HP.

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Pros

includes a USB 2.0 port

9 agree

hardware accelerated Flash support

9 agree

integrated webcam - an important feature missing from the iPad

8 agree

doesn't lock you into a proprietary application / media distribution method

8 agree

has apparently been in the works for many years - not a rush job

7 agree

capable of full 1080p playback

7 agree

fairly slick looking UI running on top of Windows 7

6 agree

comes with a full operating system (Windows 7)

6 agree

designed with an open web/content/application ecosystem in mind

6 agree

SD/SDHC/SDXC card reader for up to 128GB of external flash storage

5 agree

will keep prices low and spur other pure tablet designs

4 agree

full X86 Atom processor (1.6GHz Z530)

3 agree

dock connector

2 agree

double the internal storage on the base configuration next to the iPad - 32 to 64GB + external expansion

2 agree

can run many open platforms such as Linux and OpenBSD

2 agree

Wacom pen support; good for people who want to sketch/draw/take notes

1 agrees

canceled after the acquisition of Palm - allows for a focusing effort to reshape WebOS as a premier phone / tablet operating system in the same vein as the iPhone OS

1 agrees
  • Only 3 words are allowed.
Cons

no hard release date or price point

6 agree

poor battery life - 5 hours, of half that of the iPad

5 agree

not as sleek as the iPad

5 agree

press images and videos give the display a horrible off-angle brightness / contrast - probably a TN display (next to the iPad's IPS)

5 agree

lacks the media rich built-in distribution method the iPad enjoys - essential to many consumers

4 agree

shows up only when iPad news does - annoying vaporware marketing

4 agree

slow and power-hungry Intel Atom processor

3 agree

too thick

3 agree

lower resolution display than the iPad (1024 x 600px netbook resolution vs the iPad's 1024 x 768px)

3 agree

Still uses a desktop operating system on a slate

3 agree

OS not designed for a slate, full old-school Windows only

3 agree

no QWERTY keyboard, on screen tweaked Windows 7 keyboard does not look like fun

2 agree

more expensive base configuration than the iPad ($549 vs $499)

2 agree

Locks you into a Microsoft proprietary operating system

2 agree

Just a laptop without a keyboard and with a touch screen

2 agree

not the Courier

2 agree

Designed with a closed Microsoft ecosystem in mind

1 agrees

canceled after HP's acquisition of Palm - upsetting for the few that wanted it

1 agrees

most of the internal storage taken up by Windows 7

1 agrees
  • Only 3 words are allowed.
Edit

 

The Slate is a 8.9" touchscreen tablet PC from Microsoft HP. The main selling point of this tablet PC is that it is nearly cell-phone portable, but still powerful as a PC. The Slate runs Windows 7, which is a little suprising for so compact a device. The Slate is capable of running Amazon PC Kindle software, which displays e-books and other digital media like PDFs, HTML and Microsoft Word files. There is no keyboard on the HP Slate, which has been criticized by commentators. There is an integrated webcam on the HP Slate, as well as a single USB 2.0 port. 

Features
  • Amazon PC Kindle software
  • Ultra-thin design
  • Multitouch
  • Gaming capable 
  • Windows 7
  • Integrated webcam
  • 1 USB 2.0 port
Post Review
Jplayer01
04/22/2010 03:25

Judging by an early Spanish review (lost the link, I'm sure it's on Endgadget somewhere), it's not very impressive. Yes, the improved connectivity over the iPad is very nice (really, who enjoys paying $30 for yet another adapter?), but this device has other issues. The Atom processor is ill-placed in a device meant for media consumption and which runs Windows 7: It's simply too slow. Apple can get away with a slower CPU (yes, the A4 isn't all that special) because their OS is designed with it in mind. It's *optimized*, which I'd be hard-pressed to say about the Atom/W7 combination.

Aside from that, there's the obvious issue that Windows 7 (despite everything Microsoft says) isn't the optimal platform for a touch-only device. Have you taken a look at the apps you run on your desktop/notebook? Notice how none of them are touch-oriented? This is what the iPad has going for it. It's built from the ground-up for touch. It's the only way to interface with it. And all the developers know it, meaning every app will be (and *is*) touch-oriented. You won't have to squint and you won't need the accuracy and still hand of a brain surgeon.

Now, I'm not an Apple fanboy (I don't ever intend to buy an iPad), but there are certain things the HP Slate (and most other tablets that will be released this year) simply won't be able to beat: Touch is one. Ecosystem is the other. Yes, ecosystem. Software will make or break a tablet, not the hardware that runs it. This is something that many people seem to miss when they start comparing technical specifications and dismiss the iPad as an overgrown iPhone (I don't have one of those either). And considering the size of the App Store thus far and its massive growth in the past years, there's simply no chance for other tablets to flourish. This includes the HP Slate. The Windows ecosystem is based around mouse and keyboard, and don't expect this to change any time soon only because of the single tablet this year which happens to run Windows 7.

Suffice to say, this device will probably be a wash ... but then again, crazier things have happened. Maybe HP will get things right and the Slate will spread like a wildfire. But then again, maybe unicorns and fairies will take over the world and demand the blood of babies as godly sacrifice. Who knows?

P.S. I bet you $10 nobody will know what the HP Slate is by next year. ;)

Note: This is just a personal comment, don't take it as a review or anything of the kind. Just my take on the whole tablet thing.

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