HP Business Tablet To Launch By End Of 2012

Meg Whitman CEO HP

iPad-owning HP CEO Meg Whitman says that HP will release a Windows 8 tablet this year, to help businesses deal with BYOD

HP will launch a business oriented tablet by the end of the year, according to CEO Meg Whitman.

The company hopes ts Windows 8-powered tablet will be more successful than HP’s last ill-fated expedition into the tablet market, the TouchPad, which was released and discontinued last year.  HP vice president Ann Livermore hinted last October that a Windows 8 tablet was in the offing.

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Whitman told AFP that there wasn’t really so much a tablet market as an “iPad market”.

“The iPad is terrific; I have one,” she said. “I use it to read books or watch TV but I don’t use it to really get work done. “

The company hopes to capitalise on its reputation of providing equipment and services to businesses to attract custom from those who are struggling to cope with the trend towards Bring Your Own Device (BYOD), especially with regards to security. HP’s new tablet will focus on security, productivity and network compatibility.

“There is a big trend to BYOD to work; which is all well and good until there is a security breach,” said Whitman. “We are going to provide an alternative.”

Whitman was appointed as CEO last September, replaceingLeo Apotheker, who oversaw the abandonment of the TouchPad. Despite rumours that the WebOS mobile operating system would be sold off, Whitman and HP announced that they were going to make it open source by September this year.

However the new tablet will use the Windows 8 operating system, which Microsoft has pledged will work equally well on both traditional PCs and tablets. Users will be able to switch between a tiled interface and the more recognisable desktop mode while the software’s power management capabilities have been improved to cater for the mobile market.

Microsoft hopes that this dual system will give Microsoft a potential inroad into the tablet market, as will the launch of an app store to put it on equal footing with the iPad and Android.

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