updated 10:50 pm EST, Wed February 17, 2010
HP tablet with 3G to go below Apple cost
HP's slate PC should cost less than an equivalent iPad when it goes on sale, a leak has revealed late on Wednesday. Sources say that an entry version of the Windows 7 tablet with 3G will have similar specs to an iPad but will cost less than the $629 Apple wants to charge. Executives are reportedly meeting both in the US and Taiwan to lock down the costs and feature set within the next few weeks.
No extra details were given by the WSJ insiders. However, as it runs Windows 7 it's extremely likely to use a variant of Intel's Atom as the processor. Using a full desktop operating system will also likely push up the minimum storage as Windows 7 officially requires 16GB of drive space, or enough to consume all or a large part of a flash drive.
Similar contacts also claim that Microsoft is still developing its Courier dual-screen tablet through its low-key Alchemy Ventures lab and that it could also be an iPad rival. However, as in past rumors, the design is still considered a concept and may not necessarily reach production.
Compared to the now-public iPad, the Courier appears to embrace a very different philosophy. The device uses an agenda metaphor and is primarily meant for taking notes from the web and offline. E-books would be important given the form factor, but unlike its Apple counterpart the Courier wouldn't have room for third-party apps and would downplay the importance of media playback.