With the introduction of the HP TouchPad, HP has made the bold statement that iOS is a little bit too simple on tablets and that people want a more advanced computing experience on these bigger devices.
While WebOS on the HP Touchpad is simple to use, it is also very powerful and can manage various tasks with more ease than iOS and even Android. The TouchPad’s 1.2GHz dual-core processor and 1GB of RAM ensures that all the animations and eye candy look excellent, and you can use the Synergy software to sync all your info and even text messages from a phone to the tablet.
The interface looks like the WebOS we’re used to, just blown up. If you’re not familiar with the interface, there’s a dock for apps at the bottom, a status bar at the top, and open apps are represented by “cards.” You can switch which card is at the top of the stack, or flick them off the screen to close the application. It’s an easy way to manage what apps are open and what apps you’re using.
Tired of the one size fits all approach to virtual keyboards? HP also has you covered there, with multiple sizes of keyboard that fit you no matter how big or small your hands are.
Notifications are also improved, appearing in the top notification bar much like on Android. You can pop up a menu with them, and flick them off the screen to dismiss. All in all, it looks like the interface was totally designed for tablets, rather than just being a phone interface blown up to the larger screen size.
The main app interfaces have been re-designed, with a multi-column email app, beautiful new photos app, and a browser with full Flash support. The demo showed Flash video running smoothly in full-screen, and if that’s true of the actual device it will be a game-changer. No mobile Flash implementation has really been good so far.
The TouchPad will be out this summer, and no price has been announced yet. If this tablet is competitively priced (read: under or at $500), HP might have a winner on its hands.