Price Will be a Big Hurdle for HP’s New Windows 8 Tablet/PC Stand-In

After a number of mistrials, changed minds and fired CEOs, HP is finally looking to re-enter the tablet market.  We’ve been hearing a bit about their revamped plans for the mobile industry from new CEO Meg Whitman, along with expectations for a Windows 8 tablet in the near future.  But a new tablet from HP reassures the public that  they are in fact serious about their refreshed mobile strategy, targeting the enterprise first.

The ElitePad 900 features a machined aluminum case that holds Intel’s new Clover Trail processors, a 10.1-inch Gorilla Glass screen with 1280 x 800 resolution with a 16:10 aspect ratio, HD front camera, 8MP rear camera, a dual-array microphone, stereo speakers, 2GB of RAM, weighs about 680 grams and is 9.2-millimeters thick and has up to 64GB of storage.  It has a service door that opens to reveal a SIM card slot and a MicroSD slot,  And it supports 3G, 4G and NFC wireless connections.  Also, it’s a Windows 8 tablet.

HP’s new tablet is has parts that can be replaced by your local IT shops not like Apple’s iDevices so that if you want an upgrade or replace stuff on the tablet, it won’t cost you much.

“If anything needs to be serviced three years down the road and the battery life is no longer what it was in its first year, you can put a new battery. If the motherboard needs to be replaced, you can put a new motherboard. You can replace the display without sending the unit back to us and without worrying about compromising your data,” said Ajay Gupta, director of commercial notebook products at HP.

So why would you want to replace parts of your ElitePad 900 tablet?  Think of it like setting up your perfect personal computer.  You buy a fairly cheap PC because you’re low on budget then as time passes, you’re able to come up with enough money to replace some of the parts to make it work faster, get better graphics, etc.  And that’s exactly what HP wants people to do with their new tablet, customize it according to their needs.

HP wants their new tablet to be the primary computing device of consumers, and that’s why you can hook it up to an external monitor, as it features a docking station with ports.  Or you can always go for a “smart jacket,” which is designed to add capabilities to the tablet, turning it into a fully functional laptop.  The smart jacket features a hard-connected keyboard, a second battery, better speakers, more ports and more slots.

HP aims to release the ElitePad 900 in January 2013.  The tablet was originally priced at $699 for the 32GB version, which means the 64GB would cost more.  Not surprisingly HP is seriously reconsidering the price of the ElitePad 900.

The customizable tablet is actually a good idea, at least it sets itself apart from the hoard of tablets available in the market today, and Apple can’t sue them for that. ;)  But the price may be their biggest hurdle.  This is where their piecemeal strategy comes in to play, which is a new take on the tablet market.  We’ll have to see what consumers and the enterprise thinks of this model.