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Friday, October 22, 2010
HP Unveils $799 Slate 500 Tablet

Hewlett-Packard unveiled its first product for the tablet market, a $799 device running Microsoft Windows, aimed at business customers.

The Slate runs the same version of Windows 7 used by many companies on their standard PCs. It has a an 8.9-inch, multi-touch-enabled screen, weighs 1.5 pounds and comes with 64GB of storage and a digital stylus pen. It gets five hours of battery life.

The device also comes equipped with Wi-Fi access but no built-in capability to connect to high-speed cellular networks, as rivals including the iPad, Samsung's Galaxy Tab and Dell's Streak have.

The HP Slate ispowered by an Intel Atom processor and it is equipped with cameras in the front and back, enabling video conferencing, and a USB port.

HP's Slate is now available online, and the company will be selling it to businesses through its direct sales force.

It's $799 price tag makes it more expensive than the Wi-Fi-only version of the iPad, which starts at $499 and runs up to $699 for a 64-GB model. A 3G iPad starts at $629.

Verizon Wireless plans to sell Samsung's 7-inch tablet for $600. Dell's 5-inch Streak is priced at $550 but can be had for $300 if bought with a data plan through AT&T.

HPis also planning to release a tablet next year that may look much different from the Slate. That new tablet will be based on the webOS software that HP acquired when it bought smartphone maker Palm earlier this year.

Earlier this month, BlackBerry maker Research in Motion unveiled a 7-inch tablet aimed at business customers.

Dell also expects to launch a 7-inch model by the end of the year.

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