HP Slate Specs, Prices Revealed?
Just hours after HP teased us with another short video of its Slate tablet, Engadget revealed even more details about the upcoming device. Those details are courtesy of an internal HP presentation, which shows the specs of the upcoming device, including both its advantages over the iPad and its weaknesses--such as half of the battery life of Apple's tablet.
The leaked HP Slate presentation, which looks genuine, elucidates many of the mysteries around the device, starting with the price: $549 for the 32GB model and $599 for the 64GB version. In comparison, the introductory price of an iPad starts at $499 for a Wi-Fi-only 16GB model.
The HP Slate will have a smaller, lower-resolution screen than the iPad, coming in at 8.9-inch and 1024 by 600 pixels against iPad's 9.7-inch, 1024 by 768 display. According to the leaked presentation, the HP Slate will also be able to run 1080p HD videos, while the iPad can only run videos at 720p.
As previewed in the promotional video on Thursday, the leaked specs also show that the HP Slate will feature a SD card reader (up to 128GB) and a USB 2.0 port, together with a conventional SIM card tray (the Wi-Fi+3G iPad comes with a new micro SIM card tray).
In addition, the HP Slate features a dock connector used for powering the device, audio, and HDMI out. The iPad does not feature an SD card reader (though there is an optional accessory available for $29) or a USB port. An optional video-out adapter is also available for the iPad for $29.
Size-wise, the HP Slate will be marginally lighter than the iPad, though slightly thicker (Slate - 0.57 inches / iPad - 0.5 inches). Due to the smaller screen size, the HP Slate is also slightly shorter and narrower than the iPad (Slate - 9.21 by 5.70 inches / iPad - 9.56 inches by 7.47 inches).
The leaked specs also show the HP Slate will be powered by a 1.6-GHz Intel Atom processor with 1GB of DDR2 RAM memory (non-user upgradable). The iPad runs on an Apple-customized 1-GHz chip (A4), with an unspecified amount of RAM memory. iPad tear-downs show that the Apple has 512MB of RAM installed, but apps can only access 256MB.
The HP Slate will run on a HP touch-optimized UI, based on Windows 7 Home Premium, though only real-life tests will show if the interface is as fluid as the promotional videos depict it.
Unlike the iPad, the HP Slate will feature two cameras: a VGA front camera for video calling and a 3MP camera on the back (the iPad has none). It's unknown whether the HP Slate's camera will have a flash or autofocus functions.
The beefed-up specs of the HP Slate will take a toll on the battery life though. The HP presentation shows that the Slate will have only half of the advertised battery life of the iPad (5 hours on the Slate versus over 10 hours on the iPad). The HP Slate's battery is also non-user replaceable, as with the iPad.
What's left of HP to reveal now is the launch date of the HP Slate, which is speculated to be around June or September. The HP Slate looks like a worthy competitor to the iPad, though with the iPad selling over 300,000 units in its first day, HP better get its act together fast before it's too late.
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