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  • Microsoft, HP Cancel Tablet Projects


    With the release of the iPad WiFi+3G today, the Apple tablet juggernaut continues to roll on... and over its competitors, apparently. Microsoft finally admitted it's been working on a tablet - the Courier device that's been talked about for months - only to announce that it'll never see the light of day. At the same time, information has emerged that Hewlett-Packard is killing the HP Slate in its cradle.

    The courier was first revealed by Gizmodo last year. Instead of being tablet-shaped, the Courier had a "booklet" form factor, with two high-res touchscreens connected by a hinge. Rather than just a multitouch interface, the Courier incorporated a stylus to allow handwriting and drawing on the tablet as well. Later leaks included the news that the device would be based on the same operating system as the Zune HD. The device was buried deep in Microsoft's skunkworks, though, and no official confirmation was ever made of the project. Until yesterday, that is: Microsoft announced, and killed, Project Courier in a single press release. According to Frank Shaw, Microsoft's VP of corporate communications, Courier "technologies will be evaluated for use in future Microsoft offerings, but we have no plans to build such a device at this time."

    At almost exactly the same moment, TechCrunch reported on news out of Palo Alto that Hewlett-Packard was killing its own tablet project. The HP Slate was much more high-profile than the Courier, even being featured by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer at this year's CES show. Reportedly, the Slate was powered by a 1.6GHz Intel Atom processor with 1GB of DDR2 RAM, had a 8.9" screen with 1024 by 600 pixels and capable of 1080p HD videos, and a USB 2.0 port and SD card reader. According to this report, HP is focusing on WebOS development after its acquisition of Palm this week.

    The departure of the two tech heavyweights from the field leaves Apple in a dominant position, with no one but Google - whose Android-based tablet is expected later this year - likely to be able to mount a serious challenge. Fusion Garage continues to market their JooJoo tablet (expanding internationally, and with a 3G model promised within three months) but is a much smaller competitor.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Microsoft, HP Cancel Tablet Projects started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 33 Comments
    1. snap1500's Avatar
      snap1500 -
      Full win7 on a tablet was never a good idea. Full OS requires full hardware to run smooth and will not make a tablet slim and sleek with such hardwares. Now that Palm is part of the team, imagine a larger screen, and the internal hardwares of a palm pre, build a housing, and BAM! a nice super slim tablet to compete with apple. Looking forward to HP doing this.

      Who actually comes up with ideas and designs at apple? Jobs or his team? who gets the credits?.....
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by southfrisco View Post
      This is actually done all the time. Most companies have research groups that work on hundreds of ideas and sometimes pick certain things from their research projects to utilize in something that is actually tangible.

      For instance this "Courier device" lead to features that will be used in Windows Phone 7 and the Zune software. Just because they aren't going ahead with hardware doesn't mean some of the ideas didn't get picked up for use elsewhere. Apple does this as well, there are many many things they put in the pipeline but never actually produce. The big difference is Apple is secretive and quiet about it and you only hear about things they ultimately produce.

      Of course it doesn't stop the morons who produce speculative rumors but that is something else entirely.
      While I completely agree with all you said, I am not sure why it was a response to my original statement. What I mean was there is no longer an "iPad killer" on the horizon. Look at iPhone. We didn't get hardly anything we asked for until other similar products (Storm and Droid) started giving it to us. I fear now, whatever people ask for on the iPad, we will be given some excuse on why it cannot be until someone challenges them and says "well we did it".
    1. riku98523's Avatar
      riku98523 -
      Quote Originally Posted by rickybobby View Post
      I bet steve is like yeah i won lol
      Ya he most likely said that while M$ in the background said "why did we even try to compete? this pad idea is retarded"

      Gimmicks fail except when Apple releases them because they have enough sheep trained to buy every piece of crap they release lol.
    1. pyromcr's Avatar
      pyromcr -
      so now the ipad has a monopoly over the tablet market.

      cool!
    1. Cer0's Avatar
      Cer0 -
      Quote Originally Posted by pyromcr View Post
      so now the ipad has a monopoly over the tablet market.

      cool!
      There is always JooJoo. Lol

      Oh and they just announced today that they are planing to have the 3G version ready by July.
    1. Dash-2's Avatar
      Dash-2 -
      Maybe Microsoft and HP are working on something better then a tablet?
    1. Kroo's Avatar
      Kroo -
      Quote Originally Posted by riku98523 View Post
      Ya he most likely said that while M$ in the background said "why did we even try to compete? this pad idea is retarded"

      Gimmicks fail except when Apple releases them because they have enough sheep trained to buy every piece of crap they release lol.
      So why are you here on an Apple forum, TROLL????
    1. leram84's Avatar
      leram84 -
      Quote Originally Posted by tsatryan View Post
      So, are we saying that the rumors of a Microsoft Tablet, and rumors of an HP Slate have been killed off then?
      No... the tablet and the slate have been killed off... the rumors will continue in full force.
    1. Cer0's Avatar
      Cer0 -
      I think HP will still use the slates design but build it off WebOS since they just bought Palm.
    1. consultant's Avatar
      consultant -
      Quote Originally Posted by sziklassy View Post
      This is honestly depressing. Throws a wrench in the whole "competition = advancement" thing.
      You do realize they are killing a vaporware product made with advancements in CGI?
    1. CaptainChaos's Avatar
      CaptainChaos -
      Quote Originally Posted by cerote View Post
      I think HP will still use the slates design but build it off WebOS since they just bought Palm.
      Might as well buy an iPad then. I had high hopes of owning a Slate with a full OS on it, but this pretty much kills any hopes of me buying a tablet for a couple of years.
    1. Cer0's Avatar
      Cer0 -
      Yea I think HP wanted to and tried but there are several articles that said HP was just not happy with how Windows 7 ran on it even with a touch overlay.
    1. CaptainChaos's Avatar
      CaptainChaos -
      That is completely understandable. I wouldn't want a laggy machine. It would remind me too much of a jailbroken 3G iPhone. I don't miss those days!