Hewlett-Packard's Tablet Computer Touchpad: Business Analysis and Recommendations

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HP Tablet Introduction In the summer of 2011, with the technology world still singing the praises of Apple's revolutionary iPad tablet computer, Hewlett-Packard announced that they would begin selling a new tablet for $399. This was a major announcement from a venerable U.S. computer and printer manufacturing company, so it understandably sent some shockwaves through the technology world. It seemed as though there would finally be a viable alternative to the iPad. Reviews of the TouchPad, as it was named, were generally favorable and it seemed as though the device would be able to attain a firm foothold in the marketplace, given HP's firm presence there. However, the product never really took off and, in spite of aggressive price-cutting by the company, the device was completely gone from the shelves within two months of its major launch. There are a number of reasons for the decline of the HP TouchPad but the company may eventually come to regret its early exit from a market that is growing increasingly relevant and lucrative for many other manufacturers. TouchPad Launch The TouchPad was initially offered as a free device that came bundled with HP's popular Photosmart eStation printer and was mainly used as the printer's control screen (Ricadela & Edwards, 2010). Though it had not yet officially attained its TouchPad moniker, many of the features that would distinguish it as a standalone product were already in place. The device came equipped with Wi-Fi connectivity

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