Slated for release in January 2011, just after the holiday season (we assume to the chagrin of HP), the HP Slate 500 has finally transcended from myth into soon-to-be-seen reality. While HP was expected to throw its hat into the tablet computer market, as has every other major tech company, plans for the Slate 500 have been kept under wraps and shrouded in a veil of leaks, rumors, and hearsay. Now, with its recent official unveiling, the Slate 500, much like its expected competitor the BlackBerry PlayBook, looks to be another challenger boasting hefty specs and a sleek and functional design tailored for the professional or business user.
While not a cheap tablet PC buy for the casual user at an announced price tag of $799, the HP Slate 500 is definitely being branded as a powerhouse gadget, expected by its developers to challenge the iPad for market supremacy by relying on exceptional tech specs, notably a 1.86GHz Intel processor (in comparison to other new tablet computers being rolled out with 1GHz capabilities) and 2GB of RAM. As can be expected, the Slate 500 runs Windows 7 Professional, but with a slight twist as it includes active digitizer for taking notes. It also sports the twin cameras that are starting to become the norm among professional use-oriented tablet computers.
What We Like
- 1.86 GHz processor
- 2GB RAM
- 8.9-inch, 1024x600 resolution screen
- Front and rear facing cameras
- Windows 7 Professional
- N-Trig digitizer w/included stylus
- 1080p video capable
What We Don’t Like
- Larger screen size leads to 1.5lb weight, a bit bulkier in comparison to other tablet PCs
- $799 price tag makes anyone but the most excessive tablet computer buyer pause
- Design is nothing groundbreaking, in fact strikingly similar in style/color to iPad
- Battery usage concerns, as can be expected with such a large and high-res screen
While we won’t be able to give a final verdict on whether the HP Slate 500 will be superior to the iPad or the equally mysterious BlackBerry PlayBook until its release in January, we can tell you that the specs alone are enough to get us excited, as it should any business or professional tablet computer buyer looking for a more efficient tablet experience. The price tag and lack of further detail, along with the somewhat bulky size, give us cause for concern that the HP Slate 500 will be unique or sharp enough to differentiate it from its competitors, but nevertheless the potential for functional usage with the power the Slate 500 will be packing can guarantee that we, as well as any other self-respecting gadget lover, can’t wait to get our hands on one soon and see what the full story is. As always, we will keep you updated as we know more about it.