HP confirms webOS tablets incoming

New life breathed into HP's iPad tablet rival with webOS

HP manoeuvre themselves into position to take on the smartphone and tablet markets.

Steve Ballmer teased the audience at CES 2010 with the HP slate, describing it as "a beautiful little product… as portable as a phone and as powerful as a PC running Windows 7", before the tablet contender dropped off the radar altogether, presumed to have gone the same way as Microsoft's Courier.

But after completing its aquisition of Palm - creators of T3's gadget of the year 2009, the Palm Pre - Microsoft announced plans to use its super slick webOS in new smartphones and also future tablet computers.

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Palm will still be responsible for the design and the building of smartphones, but also for the company's tablets and netbooks, with HP saying in a statement, "Palm will be responsible for webOS software development and webOS based hardware products, from a robust smartphone roadmap to future slate PCs and netbooks.”

So, can we expect a rebirth of the slate, running this time on a version of Palm's webOS? The origianl specs - made public by way of a 'leaked' document - suggested that the tablet would run on Windows 7, but HP want that webOS for something...