While some Android tablet manufacturers are going down market, hoping to sell more units by slashing prices, HP's latest round of Slate tablets is full of more upscale bells and whistles.
HP did try the cheap route with its Slate 7, which started at $169 but was subsequently reduced to a mere $139. Perhaps in response to the tepid response, the company has swung the opposite direction with its four new Slates, none of which screams out "bargain basement."
For instance, the HP Slate 7 HD and Slate 10 HD throw in two years of free data service from T-Mobile. Considering many people use tablets only with Wi-Fi, that's a noteworthy bonus, even if the other specs aren't as spectacular: 1,280x800 resolution (on either), Marvel PXA986 processor, and 1GB of RAM. They're upgrades to the original Slate 7, but how much extra you'll have to pay for one when they arrive in November is TBD. Check out our sister site CNET's hands-on coverage for more details.
More intriguing is the Slate 8 Pro, which will compete with the iPad Mini and other 8-inch tablets. It actually has the "HD" that the new Slate 7 and 10 tease, in the form of a 1,600x1,200 screen with a 253 pixels-per-inch density, much higher than the iPad Mini or Galaxy Note 8. It also comes with the latest Nvidia Tegra 4 processor, double RAM of the aforementioned Slates, and an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera (along with the usual 2-megapixel front-facing cam). Again, no pricing details for the November launch, but CNET grabs ahold of it as well.
Finally, there's the Slate 7 Extreme, which is apparently "extreme" because it's essentially a rebadged Nvidia Tegra Note, according to The Verge. Again, it is powered by a Tegra 4 chip, and also features a stylus (albeit without an active digitizer, says Engadget) and a souped-up rear-facing camera with Nvidia magic involved to better capture slow-motion videos and HDR images. We do know that the Tegra Note price is supposed to be $199, so we have an idea of what the Slate 7 Extreme will cost when it goes on sale in November.
Does this new lineup of HP Android tablets look more enticing than the previous Slate 7? Let us know your thoughts in the Talkback section below.