HP launch webOS-powered TouchPad

Palm acquisition gives rise to iPad-clone
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As part of a trio of new product announacements, HP unveiled the firm's webOS-powered tablet called the HP TouchPad. 

The 9.7-inch device features a decidedly iPad-like 9.7-inch touch screen but HP was quick to point out that the TouchPad offers support for Adobe Flash Player 10.1 and is "designed not just for fun but for mobile productivity."

"Today we're embarking on a new era of webOS with the goal of linking a wide family of HP products through the best mobile experience available," HP Palm business unit boss Jon Rubinstein.

"The flexibility of the webOS platform makes it ideal for creating a range of innovative devices that work together to keep you better connected to your world."

HP said the TouchPad was designed to use stand alone or as a "digital companion" to a webOS phone. Calls and texts can be answered and viewed directly on the TouchPad and HP said that merely touching webOS phones to the TouchPad can share web URLs.

Hardware wise the TouchPad is armed with a Qualcomm Snapdragon dual-core 1.2GHz processor and an 18-bit 1024 x 768 resolution display. The device will be available in 16 or 32GB flash storage versions.

Perhaps disappointing HP having taken the opportunity to target the iPad's achilles heel and shave some weight off the device. The TouchPad weighs a hefty 740gr, fractionally more than the iPad.

The TouchPad is, however, armed with Beats Audio enabled stereo speakers, USB 2.0 port and a 6,300 mAh battery.

HP would only say that the TouchPad is scheduled to be available in the summer. The firm is also going to make us wait that long to find out how much it will cost too.

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