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HP to preempt Apple with Courier-based tablet?

updated 10:50 pm EST, Tue January 5, 2010

HP dual-screen tablet may show mid-2010

Microsoft may hope to undermine the widely anticipated Apple tablet by releasing one of its own at its keynote on Wednesday, a late rumor maintains. CEO Steve Ballmer is believed by sources for the New York Times to be using his presentation to unveil an HP tablet based on Microsoft's dual-screen Courier concept and would show the device at the event. How close it follows this design isn't stated, but e-book reading and multi-touch are claimed to be part of HP's feature set.

The tablet could be ready to ship by mid-2010 if the insiders are accurate.

Unveiling a tablet so soon into the year is already seen as a conscious attempt to undermine Apple, which could release its own tablet hardware on January 27th and could overshadow any Courier-based tablet if the latter is only revealed afterwards.

by MacNN Staff



  1. aplman

    Joined: Dec 1969


    First in line?

    I would hate to be the first in line for the Microsoft Product!....
    If and when Apple launches a Tablet it will have the features we all want and need.... plus over 100,000 apps... out of the box...
    I can't wait to see Microsofts.... Foldable Zune!

  1. Foe Hammer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Fall of the Underminer

    So the MS strategy is to announce it 3 weeks before Apple's and ship it 3 months after Apple's?

    MS couldn't undermine the ocean's surface from the Marianas Trench.

  1. iphonerulez

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Who is Microsoft undermining by revealing

    a tablet? First of all, from comments I've been reading is that the vocal Windows users absolutely do not want a tablet. They seem to insist that a netbook is far more useful than any tablet (especially an Apple tablet). They want a physical keyboard. That was the whole premise of having Windows Mobile smartphones with slideout keyboards. Netbook users continue to state that Apple is foolish for putting out a tablet because Windows tablets have failed in the past, so why should the Apple tablet succeed. Tablets are supposedly too much of a niche product so why go after that market again? I'm really getting mixed signals from Microsoft and Windows users. I'm really curious as to what OS is going on Microsoft tablets. Surely they're not going to slap on a full version of Windows 7 desktop and Window Mobile 6.5 is certainly on it's way out.

  1. Durandalus

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Should MS bring out anything close to the Courier concept I'd be impressed, but I don't believe it. It's too far away from anything they currently have. I'd rather bet on a Win7 Tablet with some eye-candy apps thrown on top, much like all the other "touch-enabled" Win7 computers out there. Zoom some images here, drag some images there. (And be sure to see your doctor after each work day ;-) )
    A touch-enabled OS doesn't give you touch-enabled apps, they'd have write all those apps from scratch - for a single device who's User Interface concept wouldn't work anywhere else. I don't believe it.

  1. JulesLt

    Joined: Dec 1969


    OS is everything

    The last comment is pertinent - existing tablets fail, in the same way that WinMob failed as a touchscreen system, in that the underlying operating system UI wasn't designed with finger touch in mind.

    It's notable that the photos of yesterday's tablet - I forget the manufacturer - showed drop down menus at the top of the screen. WinMob and the old PalmOS were also drop-down menu heavy, taking the desktop UI into the small space - the iPhone rethought that - but the iPhone OS is designed for one-hand usage, and a small screen.

    On the other hand, this is the sort of story news people like - who aren't good at comparing products (and indeed, from a journalistic point of view, shouldn't really express an opinion, but instead need to find a useful 'consultant' to quote).

  1. DiabloConQueso

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It's funny how companies still think that beating Apple to the market with a new product is some kind of preemptive strategy to undermine Apple's product...

    ...yet Apple has typically NEVER been the first-to-market with a product. They didn't make the first MP3 player, yet they made the most successful one. They didn't make the first all-in-one computer, yet they made the most successful one. They didn't make the first smartphone, yet they made (arguably) the most successful one.

    First does not equal best. First doesn't sell -- best sells.

  1. Jonathan-Tanya

    Joined: Dec 1969



    It's true that many business managers once percieved MS as invincible, even if they won't admit it now. But I remember, when MS entered the database market, the assumption was, they would have a monopoly status there - didn't happen. When they entered the portal market - that they would be the 'standard' - didn't happen. But MS was perceived that way and many a purchase was based on their perceived 'standardization' of every market they entered. Even in the early iPod days, I knew windows fans ran out and bought a Dell player, assuming that ultimately MS was going to introduce the standards in the music player market.

    But those days are over, and it looks like Microsoft knows it. At least the concept Courier video's appear not to be a tablet running Windows, but rather, a re-imagining of how computing should work on a personal device.

    They don't have the track record to get too excited about, but....based on the early info about this device, I'll certainly give it another look whenever they have something more concrete to show. It would come as unexpected to me too, if they got this done before Apple, since, they haven't had much time to get it designed.

  1. danviento

    Joined: Dec 1969


    As per usual with MS

    Vaporware at its finest.

  1. Raman

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Origami? Tablet PC? UMPC?

    What ever came of them?

    I thought so.

    Same crappy OS.

    Same crappy execution (or nomenclature to something that really means nothing to the consumer. .NET? Windows Live? Passport? Windows whatver). Seriously. Is MSFT really a marketing company that makes some software or the other way around?

  1. jscotta

    Joined: Dec 1969



    How do you "preempt" a non-existent product with the announcement of a product concept? Are the writers and editors at Elctronista angling for a movie deal in the fantasy genre?

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