HP building 'at least one' Android tablet: source

Summary:A source speaking to ZDNet confirms HP, the world's number one PC maker by shipments, is developing at least one Android tablet. But the computer maker will not be ditching Windows 8, or its relationship with Microsoft, any time soon.

HP is building an Android-powered tablet, a source close to the company has confirmed to ZDNet, speaking under the condition of anonymity.

android

The source, who is familiar with the company's plans, said that Android would be used "in at least one upcoming tablet."

We understand that HP will remain invested in Windows 8, but will also branch out to rival platforms in a bid to help secure the company's stake in the tablet market. 

It follows ReadWrite's own confirmation that the world's largest PC maker by shipments, and one of the more important elements to Microsoft's Windows division, is branching out to other platforms.

It's no surprise that HP is pushing out the tablet boat. Comments from HP chief executive Meg Whitman last year hinted that a smartphone could be on deck in the not-too-distant future, but ultimately ruled out a smartphone for this calendar year

However, Jefferies analyst Peter Misek warned at the time that a move into the tablet and smartphone space by HP would damage the company's balance sheets, and  dubbed the move "risky."

HP will be playing catch up in the tablet space, after first dabbling with the TouchPad back in 2010. The tablet, which was nothing remarkable by any standards, was one of the best selling tablets of the year thanks to a company firesale of the product. 

It comes at a time just after Microsoft loaned $2 billion to Dell as part of efforts to buy it out of the stock market. The move was seen as a bid by Microsoft to help secure the world's second largest PC maker by shipments investment in Windows 8.

So far, Microsoft's latest operating system has seen modest sales and an uptick in month-on-month traction in share, but has fallen short compared to previous versions of the desktop software since its launch in October.

Microsoft said recently that it has sold 60 million licenses of Windows 8 , but according to Net Applications, the latest operating system has only a 2.26 percent market share

Topics: Hewlett-Packard, Windows

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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