In the wake of HP's decision to axe the WebOS platform, the price of the HP TouchPad has been falling quicker than Cristiano Ronaldo in the opposition's penalty box. The $99 offer which has seen hordes of people lapping up the slate Stateside, is about to be replicated in Blighty, with Dixons announcing dramatic price reductions …
It's not even the 1st of April
At those prices I am actually tempted, and I haven't even been looking for one.
That's assuming that the prices are genuine.
Of course they aren't genuine.
Conviently sold out at 6PM on the dot, the page then shows where you can buy an equally obsolete Advent Vega running Android 2.2 for £199...
Seems like a trick to pull in the idiots...
Yes, they are genuine
Predictably, of course, the web sites for all retailers crashed. I got one into my cart on PCWorld, to find they don't deliver, and then Dixons, which got dumped when the system went down. Finally bagged one from Carphone Warehouse, shortly before they sold out.
But what does it do?
It's all very well having one of these. But apart from fondling it, using it as a frisbee or putting it on the mantlepiece as an ornament; what can you actually do with it.
It won't get any upgrades or fixes. It had hardly any apps for the webOS wotsit-thingy that it runs and nobody's going to write any new ones for it.
Now if some enterprising enterprise (or individual) was to port iOS to it, then I reckon $99+VAT would be about the right price for a slab of fondling.
It's about iPad 1 in terms of speed and someone will get Android to run on it.
It's a much better quality than anything else you'll get for £89.
it's got usable web browser, video player, mailer, probably some pdf/ebook reader. that's ok for most people.
the rest will use some cyanogen.
£89 is cheaper than a kindle, it may not be getting any updates but for what it does out of the box it's a steal at that price.
What does it do?!?
Well it's got an excellent web browser with flash. It handles video playback, you can Skype, it has a great email client and calendar suite, you can view and edit Office documents, view photos, there are already Twitter and Facebook apps... all of this handled much better than a £200 netbook would manage
what more do you want a sub £100 computer to do?
crapps not necessary for cheapo tablet
It has the web, email, and will function as a useful media player, which is all it needs to justify the new price considering these are the tasks that justify a tablets existence for the majority of users.
You are correct in that there won't be a glut of thousands of useless tat apps that hold the attention for 5 minutes, and the dozen or so apps that have actual utility that can't easily be replaced by some web page or another.
Not iOS ...
But there's Android coming v soon
Seems that dixons site has already gone down at 18:00 ;)
Argos, Comet, Currys, Bestbuy, phone systems are down too.
Tesco wont price match :(
I actually had two in my basket ready to rock then Commets site hiccuped and all now out of stock.
Got to the 'select payment method' page, then got a load of hash (####) text, then thrown out again to be told my basket is empty. Neither 16 or 32Gb pad now available.
Re: Site Down
> Seems that dixons site has already gone down at 18:00 ;)
It started playing up at 18:00
I managed to get some tablets ordered - twice - but failed to complete checkout; the site kept sending me back to its home page with my basket emptied.
I wonder if this was just a ruse to get people to register...
Site currently up
It says "Product unavailable", and recommends something much lower spec at the same price for the unwary to buy by accident.
Re: Site currently up
"It says "Product unavailable", and recommends something much lower spec at the same price for the unwary to buy by accident."
Ah, the old Dixons bait-and-switch, erm, I mean upsale, erm, helpful customer service.
People who waited until the Dixons drop were never going to get anything
It was pre-announced that Dixons would be dropping their price. It was also known that Dixons would offer partial refunds following any price reduction (standard DSG practice of price matching for 7 days after a sale).
Therefore anyone wanting a low price Touchpad just had to buy at the full price safe in the knowledge they can request a partial refund for the difference from Dixons once the price dropped.
Buyers that waited until the price had actually dropped had virtually no chance of completing a sale - all the stock had been sold prior to the price drop as the savvy buyers piled in hours earlier.
In many respects it was all a bit of a scam as online buyers who patiently waited were never going to get anything.
But..... according to what I've read on El Reg lately, no one wants a tablet, they want iPads!
On a more serious note, who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?
I'd happily take one at that price. as a WebOS device there *might* be something in it.... with the latest WebOS this tablet behaved itself nicely.... however, if WebOS has no future then theres always eg Android - they've already mainly ported it to that device... that spec tablet for that price with Android = FTW.
"who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?"
If the price is right, which this is, I would. For idle web browsing or as a 'toy' for any visiting children it makes enough sense to get one.
^ my usual reaction to visiting children.
@Mondo the Magnificent
Somebody who just wants to use it to surf the web from the sofa, or who only intends to use Flash or HTMML 5.0 apps?
Re: Wanton not....
If they gave everyone the possibility to root the devices and opened up the software, it'd be quite a viable piece of kit. Not everyone is obsessed with a choice of a billion frivolous bottom-joke and canned Web site apps.
For that price?
Got the 16Gb one for £89. Figure it's worth a punt to see if people manage to hack Android onto it.
Re: Wanton not....
>On a more serious note, who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?
Surely every linux fanbois on here. The sort who would religiously defend all that is linux and slag off Jobs and Gates inbetween gags whilst giving Torvalds a blow job. Those who would hack a toaster so that it could run linux. From some of the comments on these pages lately there must be thousands of pimply nerds living in their mother's basement with nothing better to do.
Me, for one!
At this price, it'd be worth it as a new toy to experiment with.
"who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?"
For £89 I would, it's a fun toy and there's already work happening on an Android port.
Unfortunately they appear to have already gone from the Dixons site, if and when it eventually loads, and PC World isn't looking too promising in my neck of the woods either...
> who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?
Someone who thought that they could perhaps "re-purpose" it in some way.
My guess is that getting Android to run on it would not be very difficult.
I've had more expensive lunches...
>> On a more serious note, who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?
I would. It's 90 quid ffs.
It's for a bit of light browsing only.
Shame it's not actually available, although the websites (dixons/pcworld/currys) are all carrying the new price, just no availability.
There are plenty of people. My sister-in-law is using a 1st gen iPod Touch to look online as it's better than her laptop and she can't afford any alternative (I even gave her the iPod).
She couldn't afford the £89 but we could have given it to her as a present and it would be a huge step up.
"On a more serious note, who would seriously consider a heavily discounted fondleslab with no future?"
Android platform developers. :-) Mission on!
Seriously, for this price, who gives a shit about future support. It'll be a fun toy, and if the community comes up with updates or some kind of Android, you'll be laughing.
@Mondo re: Who would?
ME! But the web site says they don't have any anywhere, and you can't get delivery...
A drive to the nearest PCWorld in the morning methinks...
My 8 yr old daughter
She gets to play Angry Birds on a tablet, I get to keep her paws off my phone
Want but don't need...
After trying all the usual places, it looks like anyone who was selling at the firesale prices is now out of stock. So my extensive collection of 'dead' technology will have to do without a TouchPad for now.
Maybe someone in HP marketing needs to learn about price elasticity of demand. At 400 quid nobody wants one. At 100 quid they can't shift them fast enough. Surely there must have been a price point between the two where they could have turned it into a viable business...
I haven't been looking for a tablet but for these prices, I would seriously consider getting it (and tried but was too late). Will work okay as a basic browsing device then it would just be a matter of waiting for someone to port Android or Linux to it.
That price for that hardware is a frikkin' steal!
Dixon's ran out, PC World has both in stock (for collect at store) not sure about Currys but I'd try the dixons chain of stores if you want one.
All appear to be sold out now, both at Dixons and PC World. Nice idea while it lasted... (Especially since there's an Android port coming, the hardware is sound, and the stock apps good.)
Who'd want one?
Well... there's there guys...
Both PC World & Dixons - at that price it is disposable and even if you just use for email and browsing for a couple of years it is worth it. Comet seem to have it in stock but haven't reduced prices.
To the people up there who don't know what to do with it
Since most seem to use their tablet for surfing and mail reading, and this one has those apps, I figure it has 95% of the usecases covered.
Oh, and this one can show web pages properly, that is, with the flash content...
And for the rest, it's linux, there have been people running ubuntu on it (chrooted) and android, so for the time this kind of hardware lives, it has a bit of future covered.
Mondo - many people
Would love to have the Touchpad to read e-books, watch a movie/episode of something, listen to music (it has the best speakers that any tablet has!), maybe play a game or 2..
And many people who plan to buy it wants an Android tablet. At that price, why not?
It's very nice device. My lad says it's nicer than ipad. I was lucky, first come first served. only had 2.
All sold now according to Dixon's web site :(
See HP? Price it so it is 'value for money' and it will sell. Aim for iPad prices without the apps & polish and it won't. Simplez?
What a joke!
I was refreshing the page on the pc world website when it went from 349 to 89 for the 16gb model, none available for delivery.. none available at a store near me, instantly. Either a website fail or misadvertisement.
Re: What a joke!
It would be hilarious if HP's misadventure ended up putting Dixons in hot water with the ASA over doubts that they had any to sell at that price. At least if Dixons got a stiff fine, anyway.
There's people (like me), who got them.
Damn you! God damn you all to hell!
Having bought one from the US and paid the exorbitant shipping charges because there was no reports on El Reg about UK price cuts, El Reg finally really did it. You maniacs! You posted this today! Damn you! God damn you all to hell!
They didn't last long!
On ebay in 3... 2... 1...
The big question...
What's the hardware under the hood, and is it compatible with... Android...?
there's a very good chance that android will get ported to it now with a bounty of $1500 being offered and a video appearing on Youtube appearing recently promising it in two days