For those of you who keep asking, there isn’t much in the way of information on the fate of this new tablet. Just a few short weeks after its release, HP announced it was going to cancel the hardware portion of the device…but keep working with the WebOS software. (you can read the actual press release here on Engadget)Then, in order to get rid of their stock, they did a massive fire sale, dropping the price of the tablet to $99, from it’s original price point of $399 for the 16GB units.
This sale dumped a good chunk of product into the population…but unfortunately left HP’s distributors with a ton of product that is used specifically for building those units. So current rumor up the line that I hear, and has been reiterated elsewhere, HP will likely be releasing quite a few of the Touchpads in a late September/early October feeding frenzy, once all their components are used up. Likely they would rather not peeve those who made their components, and take the loss that they were in putting the Touchpad out to market. (I’ve seen teardowns that show the price point HP paid to build them at around $300…but I’ve also seen estimates as low as $180.)
Either way, HP wins. Those who now have the Touchpads are using their App store and buying apps, and with the average amount of money spent on Apps for a mobile device being $200-300 per year per user, they’re set to recoup their losses on their “fire sales” rather quickly. Now they’re going to sell more of them? The conspiracy theorist in me wants to say this was a devious plan, but I’ve worked with manufacturers long enough to know that it’s not.
The Touchpad is still a wonderful little tablet…I love and use mine all the time…so when they’re available, snap one up! If we get more at PC Mall, you’ll find out here!