HP drops Windows 7 from Slate tablet

First HP product to run Palm WebOS?

It was made public to the world by Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer himself but an unconfirmed report now says that HP is ditching Windows 7 from its high-profile but unreleased Slate tablet computer.

According to an unnamed inside source quoted by the TechCrunch website, HP has not been happy with the performance of Windows 7 running on the Slate. Not perhaps surprising given its desktop orientation, the OS is too power-hungry and, although not mentioned in the story, each use of the OS incurs licence fees that raise the cost of any final product.

The site claims that HP could also be about to abandon Intel hardware. If both the OS and microprocessor go, the obvious conclusion is that HP is looking to use WebOS, a dedicated Smartphone platform it acquired as part of this week's surprise deal to buy Palm.

Is the Palm deal a good idea? If it rejuvenates the Slate and its successors, it could provide a sound economic platform for a segment of the computer market that will otherwise benefit only the established companies such as Apple, Microsoft and perhaps indirectly, Google.

Read: Why did HP buy Palm? To escape the dead end of Windows

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John E. Dunn

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