In the 10 years or so that I’ve been working with technology, there have been a few anticipated products that unfortunately never made it to market for one reason or another. One that immediately comes to mind is the Voodoo 5 6000, an unreleased graphics card from 3dfx of which around 1,000 test cards were built. These have since become collector’s items due to their limited prototype run and unreleased status.
WebOS Nation was able to get their hands on and produce a full review of the unannounced and unreleased HP TouchPad Go, another product that will unfortunately never see the light of day. The Go is essentially a smaller, 7-inch version of the company’s larger 10-inch TouchPad that launched earlier this summer before being discontinued a few months later.
The screen size is the most obvious difference between the two but it goes deeper than just size. HP outfitted the Go with a 4:3 aspect ratio 1024 x 768 display, resulting in what is described as a tablet that is comfortable in both portrait and landscape mode. The display features a higher pixel density than any other tablet on the market at 184ppi.
Inside is a 1.5GHz processor and 1GB of RAM, more than adequate for such a small tablet. The Nation had a difficult time gauging true performance, however, as the sample unit was running a version of WebOS (3.0.5) that was best described as “unfinished”. Audio performance was good through Beats Audio and as with all tablets, the camera was underwhelming.
The review concludes that the device wouldn’t have been the saving grace for WebOS and would have had a tough time competing with similar-sized offerings like the Kindle Fire and Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 7 Plus. But alas, it wasn’t meant to be and we can add the HP TouchPad Go alongside the Voodoo 5 6000 as yet another collector’s item.
The HP TouchPad features a 9.7-inch, 1024 x 768 pixel, IPS display front and center, it has good color reproduction and viewing angles. It has a thick, nondescript bezel that surrounds the screen, within which is a home button and an embedded 1.3-megapixel camera. The home key is eerily reminiscent of the iPad's home button, though it is oblong in shape and has a glowing notification light built into it. Along the edge of the tablet are a power/sleep/unlock key, a volume rocker, a microphone, a 3.5mm headphone jack, a micro-USB charging/syncing port, and stereo "Beats" speakers.
Amazon sent a wave crashing through the mobile industry when it announced its Kindle Fire would land with a price of $199. This is likely the best value in a tablet on the market, and will make tablet computing accessible to many people that either couldn't afford an iPad or couldn't tolerate Honeycomb tablets.
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