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Analysis: HP Slate bets on Adobe Flash
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Analysis: HP Slate bets on Adobe Flash

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In early January, HP launched its slate a few weeks before the much ballyhooed iPad. The general consensus was a big yawn. But now, HP has come back swinging, showing the world just why their Slate will match up with the iPad. The answer is with Slate’s support of Adobe Flash (for browsers) and Adobe Air (for stand alone applications).

HP, in association with Adobe, put out this video to explain the benefits of the HP Slate. Take a look.

HP needed a way to differentiate themselves from the iPad. They are betting the farm with Adobe. Apple, like with the iPhone, won’t support Flash, thus (some say) crippling the web browsing experience.

Adobe claims that 75% of videos played on the web are in Flash. And most basic games are also created in Flash as well. The two companies argue that this makes the Slate ideal for people who want to use their Slate like devices for web browsing and online gaming. Also, with Adobe Air, companies can build applications to display their content outside of the browser – the NY Times reader was shown as an example (we have to admit the NY Times Crossword puzzle was pretty cool).

Other advantages put forth include the ability to run multiple applications – which the iPad will not do.

In the end, HP did itself a favor with the video, trying to differentiate themselves from the iPad. They played up to their strengths, downplayed weaknesses (like running Windows 7, which no one is sure is the best choice to run a tablet).

In the end, however, the Slate looks just okay. It looked like a web browser, acted like a web browser, and not much more. The iPad’s introduction included applications, such as a reader, iPhoto, a new calendar, advanced email and much more. For HP, it’s basically what’s on the web. The iPad offered a suite of functionality outside of the browser – not to mention an far better looking keyboard.

For now, we are still excited about the upcoming iPad. The HP Slate – meh, it’s a web browser – so far. We’ll wait and see.

HP’s Slate will be available sometime later this year.



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