Tablet Timing: HP Delays Slate 7 Launch


HP's big move into the Android tablet market appears to have been delayed.

The HP Slate 7's release date, originally scheduled for April, has been pushed back to June. HP's landing page for the forthcoming Android tablet now says the device will be available in June 2013.

HP introduced the Slate 7, its first Android device, last month at Mobile World Congress 2013. The consumer-focused 7-inch tablet features a competitive starting price of $169 and will likely compete with other smaller tablets such as Amazon's Kindle Fire and Googe's Nexus 7.

[Related: 7 Tablets That Will Make You Toss Your Laptop ]

While the HP Slate 7's release date has changed, there's no word on any changes to the tablet's technical specifications. When the device was unveiled, HP said the Slate 7 would come with a dual-core 1.6GHz chip based on ARM's Cortex-A9 architecture, plus 8 GB of storage, 1 GB of RAM and microSD support for expandable storage. The company also said the Slate 7 would have a stainless steel frame and pack a 3-megapixel camera on the back and a VGA camera on the front. HP could not be reached for comment about the Slate 7's delay.

The delay is potentially a bad sign for the Slate 7, which is HP's second attempt to break into the consumer tablet market. The technology giant first released the Palm webOS-based TouchPad in 2011 but canceled the product after just six weeks and dropped all product development around webOS (HP recently sold WebOS to LG Electronics).

The Slate 7 is an important product for HP as the company continues to broaden its operating system approach. HP also recently introduced its first Chromebook running Google's Chrome OS.

PUBLISHED MARCH 29, 2013