HP should think twice about dumping TouchPad

In August, HP decided to no longer produce its webOS-based TouchPad tablet thanks to poor sales. But a funny thing happened after that move was made. HP cut the price of the TouchPad down to just $99 and $149 in order to get rid of its unit inventory. But the deep price cut caused the tablet to sell out almost instantly. Now the research technology firm Canalys believes that HP should think about reviving the TouchPad due to the new interest in the product.

Reuters reports that according to Canalys, "The TouchPad was overpriced at launch and did not sell. This led HP to draw a premature conclusion that the product category had failed." Thanks to the price cut, Canalys says, "The TouchPad has become the 'must-have' technology product of 2011. Perhaps no other technology vendor, apart from Apple, has ever created such hype for a technology product."

Because of this new interest from consumers, Canalys believes that the TouchPad has the potential to give Apple's iPad a run for its money. It says, "HP has established a lead in the race to be the number two behind Apple in the pad business but the window of opportunity will begin to close if delays occur." If HP can continue to keep the price of the TouchPad low and increase the marketing of the device, Canalys believes that HP could capture 10 percent of the tablet market and double or even triple the market value of the company's PC unit.

HP has already announced it will make one final production run of the TouchPad later this year but after those tablets are sold out, it will close the books on that product for good.

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Say, basically what they are saying is that they think HP should keep the touchpad around at a low price and lose money on it?
Canalys needs to learn how the market works, why would any company want to keep a device around if every sold unit is lost money?

Amazon could sell their upcoming tablet as a loss as it's likely they could make it up with sales on their services which makes up for the device cost, HP has no way to do that.

HP is not killing the hardware, just the software(WebOS).

TouchPad may eventually get Windows 8, when it launches.

FMH said,
HP is not killing the hardware, just the software(WebOS).

TouchPad may eventually get Windows 8, when it launches.


Actually it's the other way around if I'm no mistaken, they killed the hardware but plan to support the software and continue developing it in hopes of being able to license it to manufacturers.

As for a Win 8 tablet, they'd most likely make a new device, maybe a follow up to the HP Slate (Win 7 Tablet) they abandoned even quicker and only sold a small number to business (wasn't sold to consumers at all I believe)

Leonick said,

Actually it's the other way around if I'm no mistaken, they killed the hardware but plan to support the software and continue developing it in hopes of being able to license it to manufacturers.

As for a Win 8 tablet, they'd most likely make a new device, maybe a follow up to the HP Slate (Win 7 Tablet) they abandoned even quicker and only sold a small number to business (wasn't sold to consumers at all I believe)

You're not mistaken. They did kill the hardware, not the OS.

I think the only way HP is going to keep their momentum here is by taking a loss on their products so other people will buy it. That's unsustainable and I doubt they can make up the loss in their app store sells.

The touchpad is also lacking basic features that many other tablets have... such as hdmi out, or gps etc.

jd100 said,
The touchpad is also lacking basic features that many other tablets have... such as hdmi out, or gps etc.

How can those be "basic features" if most tablets don't have them?

Shadrack said,
Nah. Those aren't "basic features" IMO.

Okay lets see what the IPAD2 has as basic as well. Come on without 3G on the IPAD2 it does not have GPS enabled. So not basic. These basic features are not "basic" yet.

Sounds more like the guy who said this, bought a touchpad himself and thinks maybe if he writes a story about it that HP will keep making it, so that he isn't stuck with a dead product.

FACT is, the ONLY reason it sold like it has is because of the cheap price, and a huge number of those purchases are from resellers. If they brough it back, they would be forced to sell it at the cost price, plus markup price in order to make any kind of profit. Then the store has to mark up their mark up to make any profit.

And no, they are not competition to the iPad, they aren't even close. The apps alone on the iPad are FAR better quality than the apps for Android, from what I have seen.

LMFAO at what was once a $400 tablet that is now selling for a fraction of the cost being "a must have product"!! Maybe next year Ferrari will slash the price of the 458 to $50k and it will be a must have.

The touchpad wasn't selling for numerous reasons. Price wasn't the only factor. Heck there are several droid based tablets that are selling at the same price point that are doing fairly decent. HP dropped the ball with their design, features and lack of preliminary app support.

Richeemxx said,

The touchpad wasn't selling for numerous reasons. Price wasn't the only factor. Heck there are several droid based tablets that are selling at the same price point that are doing fairly decent. HP dropped the ball with their design, features and lack of preliminary app support.

The design and features aren't the issue. More so the lack of apps. Everyone knows Android. That's why those tablets sold well. WebOS is new and not recognizable to most. That and pricing it up where the better, and more well-known tablets is why it didn't sell well.

I've got to say that everything that's been going on with the price cuts has been fascinating. Maybe more companies will sacrifice profit for volume in future.

They are not saying sell it for $99 or $149 as the eBay market clearly shows that $299 is still a viable number. They are selling for that and craigslist for $250.00 on average. The $299 and $349 price model should be looked at. I know that some reports claims HP's cost to manufacturer the 32GB was right at $300. If they get aggressive to look for adoption instead of profit then they can model it after their printers model which goes for ink profit rather than printer hardware profits.

"The technology research firm Canalys believes that HP should think twice about dumping its webOS-based HP TouchPad, saying that the device has now become a hot item thanks to its deep price cut"

So this "Canalys" obviously doesn't realize HP is in the business of making money do they? Do they suggest they continue to sell a $300 to MFG item at $99 and lose money.. what will that accomplish for HP?

xendrome said,
"The technology research firm Canalys believes that HP should think twice about dumping its webOS-based HP TouchPad, saying that the device has now become a hot item thanks to its deep price cut"

So this "Canalys" obviously doesn't realize HP is in the business of making money do they? Do they suggest they continue to sell a $300 to MFG item at $99 and lose money.. what will that accomplish for HP?

If it were to stay cheap for a long time, everyone under the sun would buy them, including many developers. Developers are smart and they know where the money is; it's where the popular device is.

If HP take a cut of the money from developers selling apps, they would make a massive profit. If it became popular enough, they could raise the hardware price a little too.

_DP said,

If it were to stay cheap for a long time, everyone under the sun would buy them, including many developers. Developers are smart and they know where the money is; it's where the popular device is.

If HP take a cut of the money from developers selling apps, they would make a massive profit. If it became popular enough, they could raise the hardware price a little too.

Its hard to make money from a cut of the apps. There was a study that said something like 33% of smart phone users have never even downloaded an app.

There is no "massive profit" in apps for the App Store except for a few handful of players like Apple.

xendrome said,
"The technology research firm Canalys believes that HP should think twice about dumping its webOS-based HP TouchPad, saying that the device has now become a hot item thanks to its deep price cut"

So this "Canalys" obviously doesn't realize HP is in the business of making money do they? Do they suggest they continue to sell a $300 to MFG item at $99 and lose money.. what will that accomplish for HP?

It amazes me what I hear from these "investors". Apparently they speak without knowledge of what's going on. Of course they sold out at $99, it's a modern tablet that is still very powerful. No one wants it at $499, but if you're basically going to give them away at $99, sure, people will buy them. However, HP can't produce them at that price. They'd have to go back up to at least $399/$499 to actually run a business off of it, and that's just counting manufacturing costs ($316/$328 respectively). That doesn't include paying the people who have already put work into it and people who will continue to put work into it if the product is continued, so $399/$499 would still be a very bad business decision.

And of course on top of all of that, a good number of their sales are from people trying to put Android on it. They don't want webOS, they want a $99 dual core Android tablet, or better yet, maybe Windows 8 in the future.

All around, there's not one reason for HP to start making them again. There is still very little interest in a full priced HP Touchpad, and even at $399/$499, I doubt there would be all that much interest. They did the right thing by giving up on it, now move on and try to develop a product people want.

a product went from $400 to $99
of course they're going to sell out in no time, so their next thought is to throw more money at it?
what the heck is their board of directors thinking?

Ive had the touchpad for a while now too, i like WebOS. It's much better than any offering from android currently.

After having mine for a month now, I really am enjoying it. WebOS isn't bad, in fact, I would say I would keep it (instead of Android) if it had native support for playing DIVX files and more apps. Oh, and threaded emails!

Brandon said,
After having mine for a month now, I really am enjoying it. WebOS isn't bad, in fact, I would say I would keep it (instead of Android) if it had native support for playing DIVX files and more apps. Oh, and threaded emails!

Try Kalemsoft media player... Or TouchPlayer (but Touchplayer has no UI)

Kwanza said,

Try Kalemsoft media player... Or TouchPlayer (but Touchplayer has no UI)

No UI? Hmmm the irony... a <Touch>Player you can't touch for it has no UI.

Touchpad is a beautiful device... the problem is its a bit heavy and OS is not matured enough(slow and No app). they should revise the product with a lighter one and should sell it for $300

still1 said,
Touchpad is a beautiful device... the problem is its a bit heavy and OS is not matured enough(slow and No app). they should revise the product with a lighter one and should sell it for $300

ya just take a bunch of the not needed components out and keep selling it for cheap.. keep the nice screen tho.. or atleast get these guys ready to run windows 8

still1 said,
Touchpad is a beautiful device... the problem is its a bit heavy and OS is not matured enough(slow and No app). they should revise the product with a lighter one and should sell it for $300

The OS is only slow because (1) the OS has an extremely extensive logging system that actually slows down performance and (2) the chip is underclocked.

There are tweaks to disable logging and overclock the device. Mine is running at 1.7 Ghz and it is super fast.

DukeEsquire said,

The OS is only slow because (1) the OS has an extremely extensive logging system that actually slows down performance and (2) the chip is underclocked.

There are tweaks to disable logging and overclock the device. Mine is running at 1.7 Ghz and it is super fast.


yeah i know and the specs are better but HP need to make it disable all those.... i have disabled logging in mine but have not overclocked... it runs better.

still1 said,

yeah i know and the specs are better but HP need to make it disable all those.... i have disabled logging in mine but have not overclocked... it runs better.

I know. I just wish HP didn't shoot themselves in the foot.

still1 said,
Touchpad is a beautiful device... the problem is its a bit heavy and OS is not matured enough(slow and No app). they should revise the product with a lighter one and should sell it for $300

But at $300, it's no longer the impulse buy that caused it to sell out within a few hours. For me, and I'm sure for a lot of other people, at the price you're suggesting, it'll keep sitting on the shelf.

At $99 or $149 however, HP is losing money they'll never recoup. It's a dead end.