Apple’s iPad and the HP/Microsoft Slate are not in competition with each other, an HP exec has suggested.
Phil McKinney, vice president and chief technology officer for HP’s personal systems group, took care not to mention the rival firm by name at a press event in Barcelona today, claiming he preferred to refer to Apple as “the fruit company”.
“We never positioned the Slate against their product, the use cases are not the same, the things people do with them are not the same,” he said.
“It’s not about saying ours is a better slate than theirs, it’s about two different segments of the marketplace looking at products doing two different things.”
McKinney added that rather than competing against one another, having two tablet computers in the market was actually helpful to the vendors.
“The benefit of having both players in the market coming out with products at the same time is you’re not in the mode of having to spend a huge amount of dollars trying to educate the customer to get ready for these new categories. If we had brought the slate out two years ago when we had it done, think about what the consumer reaction would have been,” he said.
Eric Cador, senior vice president for HP’s personal systems group, made a point of showing the device at the ‘Touching the Senses’ event, saying “I just wanted to show you that it’s real, it exists.” He added that the device is on schedule to ship later this year, but did not give a more specific timeframe.