In my review of the HP TouchPad, which we published last night, I went off on a tangent about the “touch-to-share” functionality Hewlett-Packard introduced with the TouchPad tablet and the Pre 3 smartphone. I think it bears repeating. In a nutshell, touch-to-share allows the user to tap a webOS smartphone to the TouchPad in order to push any URL in an open browser page from one device to the other. I wrote at length about this feature, which is still in its infancy but exhibits tremendous potential. But the real value for touch-to-share goes far beyond the technology itself. The feature is great and HP can take it in a million different directions, but the bigger picture here is that touch-to-share can become an amazing way for HP to differentiate its tablet from the competition in a way that might actually pique consumers’ interest. Tech companies are so concerned with catching up right now that they forgot a very important piece of the puzzle: valuable differentiation. Flash, for example, is not a way for a company to differentiate its products — just ask the senior RIM executive who recently made a plea for RIM to step up its game. Companies are so concerned with pushing media tablets out to market that they’re forgetting to give consumers a reason to buy them over the market leader, the Apple iPad. If an Apple competitor ever wants to see real, long-term success with a tablet line, valuable differentiated features like a mature touch-to-share solution are paramount. With that, hit the break for my thoughts on the technology, as originally seen in our review of the HP TouchPad. More →
It has been exactly 140 days since Hewlett-Packard first unveiled the TouchPad, and I think of it as the first device to emerge from a post-acquisition Palm team that has really been tested over the past few years. To be fair, it will actually be the third webOS device to launch since HP took over Palm, but the the Pre 2 was a leftover from before the deal went through and the Veer never should have been been released. But yes, the Palm team has been through a lot: from botched acquisition talks, to the brink of collapse, to resurrection through Elevation Partners’ investments, to a brilliant new web-based mobile operating system, to the announcement of the phone that would save the business from the brink of collapse, to BGR exclusively reviewing the phone that would save the business from the brink of collapse before any other site on the planet, to the launch of the phone that would save the business from the brink of collapse, to the failure of the phone that would save its business from the brink of collapse, and finally, to HP. Can a company that once lead the industry come back to regain mind share, market share and profit share following a roller coaster ride like that? Hit the break to find out if the TouchPad pushes the company’s mobile business in the right direction or if it is another dud from a company that could be dominating the market.
Hewlett-Packard finally announced details surrounding the launch of its first webOS tablet last week, but nary a peep was made about its upcoming flagship smartphone, the HP Pre 3. The TouchPad tablet will become available in the U.S. on July 1st starting at $499.99, and now it looks like the Pre 3 could launch exactly one week later on July 8th. U.K. retailer £349.99 (about $565) unlocked and contract-free, which is very reasonable for a brand new smartphone. On this side of the pond, we’re still expecting the Pre 3 to launch at $199.99 with a new two-year carrier agreement, and the availability of unlocked units is unknown. We’ve been waiting to get our hands on a production Pre 3 ever since we first saw the sleek smartphone back in early February, and it looks like the wait might almost be over. More →
The Federal Communications Commission recently released documents outlining the testing and approval of Hewlett-Packard’s upcoming flagship smartphone, the HP Pre 3. Beyond the idea that the public release of these documents could mean that an official announcement isn’t far away, the documents also reveal that the CDMA version of the Pre 3, thought to be coming soon to Verizon Wireless, also includes global GSM compatibility. This would make Verizon’s version of the anticipated webOS phone a world phone. The FCC had previously released documents covering the approval of a GSM-only Pre 3 model thought to be headed soon to AT&T. BGR took a hands-on look at the Pre 3 back in February at HP’s Think Beyond event, and we called the device “the webOS smartphone we’ve been waiting for.” Unfortunately, it’s now three months later and we’re still waiting. More →
WebOS enthusiast blog PreCentral.net on Thursday published a series of screenshots from HP’s upcoming webOS 3.0 operating system for the TouchPad tablet. The images were pulled from an emulator as opposed to an actual device but we can still see several areas of the OS such as the Web browser, the virtual keyboard, Bing Maps, the music player and the messaging app. BGR took a hands-on look at the HP TouchPad when it was announced in February. We found the tablet to be quite impressive, especially in its integration with webOS-powered HP smartphones. HP’s CEO said in January that the company would be narrowing the gap between device announcements and launches, yet HP still has not announced release details for the TouchPad or the two smartphones announced in early February, the Pre 3 and Veer. Hit the break for more images of webOS 3.0. More →