Who Can Resist The HP Touchpad For $99?

hp-touchpad5 ….not I, as it happens. When the demise of the Touchpad saw it’s price drop to $99 and $149 for the 16 GB & 32 GB models respectively it seems that world+dog wanted them.

From the time the price drop took effect Saturday, August 20th in the early am hours retailers & e-tailers who had stock saw huge demand. By Sunday afternoon most were simply sold out.

Even HP itself resorted to building a list and promising to inform prospective customers when they had more available. Sunday morning I put myself on HP’s list, noting that I’d take a 32 GB model if they had some.

Then Monday morning I saw by way of Twitter that Barnes & Noble had stock and was taking orders. Acting quickly, I managed to place an order for a 16 GB model.

I have an account with Barnes and Noble, stemming from when I purchased the Color Nook for my wife last Christmas. Of course, I couldn’t recall the password for that account at the moment.

Feeling the need to hurry before their stock was instantly committed, I asked them to send me a password reminder…but I completed the order as a guest. Good thing too, since the password reminder took an hour to show up. Surely they were also sold out very quickly.

Viewsonic-G-Tablet-250px What will I do with a WebOS tablet? Who knows? I’ve had the Viewsonic G-Tablet for several months but struggled to find a place for it in my routine.

I have carried it with me on a few trips. I’ve loaded Cyanogen Mod7 on it. I very nearly bricked it, but then was able to restore it to functionality.

The one thing I haven’t been able to do with it is find a role for which it’s uniquely suited. It can’t replace my netbook, laptop or cell phone.

In truth, it’s awkward, the result of not having direct access to Google’s Android Marketplace. Google really didn’t want anyone offering a 10” tablet prior to the release of Honeycomb, so they don’t allow such devices to access the marketplace.

There are other marketplaces, and I’ve found the Amazon marketplace to be about the best of the alternatives. Still, most of my time spent with the GTablet has been doing web surfing, using Google Reader and playing Angry Birds.

Beyond the inconvenience of the marketplace, the GTablet has a lousy display. It’s painfully clear that the display was meant to be deployed in a netbook. The acceptable viewing angle is so much better in landscape mode than in portrait mode, which is unfortunate in a tablet.

It’s also heavy. In fact, the one thing that I’ve learned from the GTablet is that 10” might not be the right size for most people. It’s too big. It makes for a heavy device. An 8” tablet might just be right fit between a cell phone and a netbook, especially if it brings the weight down.

There’s now a bounty on offer for the first person to successfully port Android to the Touchpad. That will surely happen. And of course someone will pick up the pieces of the WebOS universe. However, with HP looking to sell it off it’s unclear who might be interested in buying it. Clearly HP is not firing on all cylinders at the moment, so who knows what will happen to WebOS?

At very least I look forward to seeing if the Touchpad presents greater opportunity for enhancing my daily routine.

Update: Alas, last evening…before this post was scheduled to go live…Barnes & Noble sent an email advising that they were cancelling my order. Many others reported receiving the same message. Apparently they also sold out in a dramatic fashion, but took more orders than they could fill.

Now I’ll just wait and see what HP offers those who signed up to be notified when more Touchpads become available.

  • warmbowski

    I can’t help but have some hope that there is a warehouse with a stash of AT&T Pre 3 phones in it. It seems so close to the release date that I can’t see how they didn’t manufacture any. I saw that there is rumors of a fire sale of Pre 3 phones in Europe for about $75, but those phones are missing the 850MHz spectrum which renders limited 3G coverage in the US. Still, I signed up with HP for notification, just in case.