Staples has 32 GB HP Touchpads at 'new low price' of $500?

Is Staples' ad for the 32 GB HP Touchpad an honest mistake or opportunistic move to gouge unsuspecting customers still hunting for an elusive webOS tablet?

Staples' flyer for this week is a cruel tease for those still pining for a HP Touchpad at fire sale prices. It has the gall to advertise the 32 GB Touchpad for a "new low price" of $499.99 -- a whopping $100 savings, available from September 4 to 10 -- when Touchpads have been selling out at $150 for the 32 GB and $99 for the 16 GB just a couple of weeks ago.

To add insult to injury, the Staples ad states explicitly that this "deal" is only available in-store and not available on Staples.com, but a quick search for the all the retail stores within 100 miles of my home shows none are actually available for purchase. Perhaps you have better luck elsewhere in America, but I doubt Staples has more stock considering the fact practically every retailer including HP itself is completely sold out, and a new limited run has most definitely not arrived yet.

Even if the Staples near you magically has a 32 GB available, you would do better buying the web-OS tablet from eBay, where the going rate is more reasonable at about $200-plus for a 32 GB model. It will even be delivered to your home.

No matter how you slice Staples' inflated price for the discontinued Touchpad or for advertising its availability when the item is most likely out-of-stock, it is simply a bad move that either confuses, or (at worst) takes advantage of people still hunting for an elusive Touchpad. Tisk, tisk, Staples!

Does the Staples near you have the 32 GB Touchpad in stock? Share with us below.

[Source: Staples' weekly flyer, eBay.com]

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