HP Slate 500

The HP Slate 500 is official according to Engadget. Here are the specs:

  • 8.9-inch capacitive touch TFT LCD with 1024×600
  • Wacom digitizer for taking notes.
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • 1.86GHz Intel Atom Z540
  • Broadcom Crystal HD for 1080p video playback.
  • 2GB DDR2 RAM, 64GB SSD, WiFi BGN
  • Front-facing 640×480 camera, rear-facing 3 megapixel camera
  • 1.5 pounds
  • US$799

There is also a dock (HDMI, 2x USB, headphone), a SD card slot, an internal microphone and a “keyboard button”. I expect the keyboard button is needed because Windows 7 wouldn’t know exactly when you would want the keyboard or not. iDevices also have a keyboard button but it is in the the apps themselves.

A Ctrl+Alt+Del key, a must have: it is after all a Windows machine. Unfortunately there is no slot for the Wacom digitizer, but the included case does. Onboard is a 3G mobile broadband Gobi 2000 module, which means that the Slate 500 could theoretically hop onto both GSM/CDMA data networks.

The back has an interesting triangular rubbery texture that should prevent it from sliding around. It is probably is easier to grip than glass or aluminum.

The HP Slate 500 is basically a touch-enabled Windows 7 netbook without the keyboard. I can see this being used as a very expensive notepad for those who would rather write longhand than type. But wouldn’t HP’s own TouchSmart tm2t or EliteBook 2740p convertibles be better keyboarded alternatives? You are going to get a Bluetooth keyboard for the Slate 500, right?