CEO of Hewlett-Packard Meg Whitman says the company needs to "feature better design", claiming, "the whole market has moved to something that is more beautiful."
This strategy is what HP hopes to use to pick up its falling market share, and it seems to be well incorporated into its new tablet.
Dubbed the ElitePad 900, the tablet is targeted at business with x86 compatibility for existing business application support.
The tablet is 9.2mm thick and has a 10.1-inch (25.65cm) diagonal display made from Corning Gorilla Glass.
Hands on, the aluminium chassis and angular bezels made the tablet feel comfortable in hand without giving the impression that it was cheap or flimsy
HP vouches for the durability of the ElitePad, which successfully underwent the US military standard 810G testing for vibration, dust and temperature extremes. However, the device did not undergo the drop test, so the maximum height that the tablet can fall before completely shattering the Gorilla Glass is unknown.
Internally, the tablet runs a "Future Intel Atom Processor-based mobile platform". HP was not specific about the name of the processor at time of release but this reporter believes it could be referring to Intel's Clover Trail. It will run on the Windows 8 Pro operating system instead of the more mobile suited Windows RT.
Camera-wise, the device carries an eight megapixel on the back and a 1080p front facing.
HP also unveiled a slew of peripherals, including expansion solutions. The HP ElitePad Docking Station transforms the tablet into a laptop for the office when connected to the Bluetooth wireless keyboard and mouse.
By itself, HP claims the device will have up to eight hours of battery use, though when connected to the Expansion Jacket will receive 10 hours of additional battery life. The jacket will supply four USB 2.0 ports and HDMI.
In terms of weight, the tablet was light but seemed as though it may cause strain if carried in one hand for an extended period. On paper it is said to weigh 690 g bare and comes in at 1.06kg when connected to the Expansion Jacket. With the jacket on, the tablet was undeniably heavy but the obvious added protection and durability made up for it.
For connectivity, it has wi-fi capabilities as well as a slot for a 3G SIM card. It was not specified which local telcos would be carrying the product or supplying the SIM.
HP intends to have the product on shelves in Singapore by late January 2013. No specific date or price was given. It was, however, reported on CNet that the device would sell at US$700 (S$860) in the US.
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