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Even More WebOS Tablet Details Emerge

palm tablet webos The dust has not even settled on yesterday's breathtaking WebOS tablet leak and we've already got a fresh batch of new info, again courtesy of Engadget.

Citing their usual "trusted" anonymous tipsters, the second Engadget piece reveals that the smaller of the WebOS twin tablets, codenamed "Opal", will be roughly similar in size to the Samsung Galaxy Tab. Having extensively used a Galaxy Tab over the past few months since its launch, I can confirm that it a very comfortable form factor that can be easily held in one hand or used in two hands for proficient thumb typing. Screen resolution for the Opal is said to be 1024x768, the first WebOS device supporting this resolution and a solid notch above the slew of Android-based 7" devices with 1024x600 screens. This resolution also conveniently matches the first-generation Apple iPad resolution, albeit with much greater pixel density.

The larger tablet, codenamed "Topaz", is now reportedly going to ship three months prior to Opal and will be almost identical in overall dimensions to the current iPad, though with a half-inch smaller screen size. Engadget is claiming that their source is not certain about this device's screen resolution but it could likely be the same 1024x768, though a subsequent Precentral report says it is more likely to be 1316x936, which is a non-standard panel resolution--1366x768 seems like a safe bet for a 9" screen. If the reports are true, this will now introduce some frighteningly Android-like fragmentation into the WebOS world, with at least 4 (possibly more once the smartphones arrive) resolutions for developers and users to worry about.

Additional details from the report are that both tablets will have some kind of Touchstone-style inductive charging capability, though compatibility with existing Palm Pixi/Pre Touchstone docks is highly improbable. I just hope that HP sees fit to truly leverage this novel piece of technology beyond more than the basic desktop charging dock employed by Palm. Speaker-wise, HP's much-ballyhooed "Beats" by Dr. Dre audio technology is also supposedly in tow as is full Adobe flash support and the usual WebOS multitasking capabilities. Amazon is also thankfully being leveraged as a heavy supported for Kindle e-book integration as well as mp3 and various media store duties.

Most interesting in the report is a large amount of cloud integration for the tablets, courtesy of a leaked consumer survey recently conducted by HP. The survey suggests that "tens of gigabytes" of cloud storage will be available to users to utilize not just for backup or media storage but for full application storage and execution from the cloud. Familiar Palm WebOS buzzwords such as "Synergy" and "Touchstone" are also mentioned in the survey, as is an expanded of WebOS 2.0's Exhibition mode currently available on the current Pre 2. While this heavy cloud integration is quite intriguing, too little offline functionality could severely hamper the usability of an unconnected tablet, especially a wi-fi version where no connectivity is available. Also, many consumers will be loathe to pay any additional monthly fees for cloud-based storage.

Integration with WebOS smartphones is also mentioned with the report, with the primary example being the ability to receive an incoming call on a WebOS smartphone with the WebOS tablet. This will presumably be done via Bluetooth but there is no mention if current WebOS devices will be able to utilize this feature if they are eventually updated to WebOS 2.x.

Finally, very little was mentioned about any upcoming WebOS smartphones other than they are ready to be launched but they are "nothing too amazing". Of course, it's unknown if the tipster's reference point of comparison is one of the slew of high-end 4G handsets seen recently at CES or the aging Pre and Pixi.

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Tablet eBooks: WUT?!

mikecane @ 1/19/2011 4:11:37 PM # Q
>>>Amazon is also thankfully being leveraged as a heavy supported for Kindle e-book integration as well as mp3 and various media store duties.

Where did you dig this out from, your hiney?

First, HP already has a partnership -- which is a CO-BRANDED one -- with Barnes & Noble for eBooks. Ain't no Amazon invited to this party as a bundled app.

Second, HP BOUGHT a frikkin music/media service -- or even two or three -- last year. Look it up.

RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
hkklife @ 1/19/2011 7:07:55 PM # Q
Oh, Mike, PIC's front page was such a pleasant place during your self-imposed exile over the past few months. Everyone knows these acquisitions and partnerships often lead to nothing, especially if it's potential game-changing product on the line like these tablets will be. And if you cannot join the iTunes party, then Amazon integration is by far the next best thing(especially if it's better than Android's slapdash implementation).

The rumor may be entirey off-base but it does come straight from the most reliable source for these sorts of things--Precentral:

" Related but take it with a grain of salt: we've received and unverifiable but true-seeming tip that the tablets will feature tight Amazon integration - including unbox movies, music store, and, yes, Kindle. Perhaps Jon Rubinstein joining Amazon's board wasn't just a coincidence?"

http://www.precentral.net/rumor-more-tablet-details-emerge-touchstone-size-features


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RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
LiveFaith @ 1/19/2011 7:40:24 PM # Q
Welcome back Mike. I'm glad Roller Derby season is over, so you can join us again.
Pat Horne
RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
LiveFaith @ 1/20/2011 11:26:44 AM # Q
Oh, this 2/9 thing could be really interesting. HP has the $$$ and the marketing horsepower to deliver powerful devices on what is already a phenominal OS. Just tinkered with multitasking on my son's iPod Touch yesterday and just chuckled at it in comparison to my Pre+. WebOS has some holes to fill, but it is feasible now.
Pat Horne
RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
Gekko @ 1/20/2011 11:43:25 AM # Q

how did you escape Jonestown?

RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
bhartman34 @ 1/21/2011 4:59:36 PM # Q
I think Rubenstein being on Amazon's board is a dead give-away. And I think it's appropriate, given that WebOS is one of the only (other than Linux, as far as I know) platforms that doesn't have Kindle software yet. With Rubenstein on the board, there's not a snowball's chance in Hell that HP wouldn't be working to get Kindle on WebOS. With Amazon's MP3 service already on WebOS, how could they not have the Kindle software? As for Barnes & Noble, their partnership with HP appears to have been for an online e-bookstore. And the bookstore seems to be in support of this HP PhotoSmart e-Station.
RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
Gekko @ 1/21/2011 5:09:04 PM # Q

what's with all of the cloak and dagger and conspiracy theories? open is the standard today. Android has the Google Books, Amazon Kindle, and B&N Nook APPLICATIONS available for download. in other words, even Google who sells books via their own book store gives you multiple competitor options to buy books on your Android. in fact - the Kindle App is preinstalled on my Sprint EVO. the days of exclusive content distribution deals are gone - unless you own an iPhone.

RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
bhartman34 @ 1/21/2011 5:48:18 PM # Q
Even the iPhone has the Kindle and Nook apps, I think. Doesn't it?
RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
jca666us @ 1/22/2011 7:29:33 AM # M Q
Livefaith,

Apple's multitasking is designed to minimize excessive battery and memory usage.

While webos and rimm's playbook are more visually flashy, it remains to be seen if these contenders can get battery life in the same ballpark as the iPad.

Last I read, rim's having issues getting the battery life of the playbook past a few hours.

RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
mikecane @ 1/22/2011 4:50:44 PM # Q
>>>how did you escape Jonestown?

I didn't drink the Kool-Aid marked EVO.

RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
mikecane @ 1/22/2011 4:52:17 PM # Q
I didn't go into exile. For the longest time I hadn't been signed in and only found that out when I tried to Comment. So I decided, WTF for several times. The tablet news was worth coming in for. (I was about to type "coming out for" but Gekko would take that and run, the filthy little git.)
RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
Gekko @ 1/22/2011 5:39:19 PM # Q

Con -

the Jonestown reference was meant for the Reverend.

we all know you're trapped on Satan Island ever since the ferry "incident".

RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
LiveFaith @ 1/22/2011 7:45:21 PM # Q
I served and then backslid right at the end.
Pat Horne
RE: Tablet eBooks: WUT?!
mikecane @ 1/24/2011 4:04:23 PM # Q
>>>we all know you're trapped on Satan Island ever since the ferry "incident".

Gekko, always keeping files. It's like looking into a candy store window for you, isn't it, wishing you had my life of excitement, cats, and pizza!

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Not Really Sure About This...

bhartman34 @ 1/21/2011 6:16:21 PM # Q
I'm not in love with the idea of a phone OS on a tablet to begin with, and WebOS is particularly limiting, at this point, with the dearth of apps. They'd better have something huge planned in the meantime to deal with the app issue, and without new phones over the summer, I'm outta there. My contract's up in July, and a Pre 2 isn't enough of an incentive to keep me in the HP/Palm camp.
RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/21/2011 6:46:50 PM # Q

but don't you want to be trapped on a tiny proprietary island all by yourself?

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/21/2011 7:36:42 PM # Q
Well, I don't think the WebOS world is that small. It's just the idea of being on any island doesn't appeal to me, and a tablet should have PC-style apps, not phone apps. It's the same beef I have with the iPad. On the positive side, you can sideload apps on a WebOS device w/o jailbreaking it, but like I said, there isn't the wide variety of apps you have for the iOS world. I'm wondering if HP is banking on the idea that the tablet itself will bring new developers. That's a risky strategy.
RE: Not Really Sure About This...
LiveFaith @ 1/22/2011 8:00:56 PM # Q
If they are going to attract devs with the pad, then the things had better massage your back in vibration mode, double as a heating pad, and triple as a casserole warmer, and a host of other things that leap frog iPad, Playbook, and the G clones.

Maybe I'm mistaken, but if I'm going to dev, then I want to see a robust market, or the evidence that one is on the way. HP stands for Hefty Promises at this point, and Palm has burnt a lot of good devs with Palm OS neglect, the Foldeo, wimpy WebOS APIs, and collapsing what market share was there.

Robust development comes most often from those with robust wallets. Those who look to keep that wallet padded. A great phone OS, with the possibility of a great tab OS, all w/out platform market share is a non-starter IMO. HP had better have more than a cool tablet or an "iPad killer" to get devs.

It appears they are going for seamless "sync" across scalable devices. I believe that will be the "beyond" part on the 9th. It needs to be good or this could be a one and half billion hole in the ground.

All this excepts the unbelievable Homebrew devs, WebOSinternals / Preware gang. I would have been gone without them, and I've been assigned to turn out the lights 'round here.
Pat Horne

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
gmayhak @ 1/22/2011 8:57:46 PM # Q
We're all waiting but the only thing that will get my attention is full support for legacy Palm OS apps. It's not too late for them to realize what made Palm, the hundreds of thousands man hours developing tools and apps for Palm OS. Web OS is someones guess of a cool os. No facts, just a guess!
What the hell were they thinking? Just add the flashy card stuff to a proven OS and add more processing capability to the hardware so developers can take atvantage of it and keep building on what you have. Don't throw it all away and start over. There is no room for nubees in this market!

Gary
Tech Center Labs
www.talestuff.com
www.iTalentProductions.com

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/22/2011 9:29:41 PM # Q
gmayhak wrote:
We're all waiting but the only thing that will get my attention is full support for legacy Palm OS apps. It's not too late for them to realize what made Palm, the hundreds of thousands man hours developing tools and apps for Palm OS. Web OS is someones guess of a cool os. No facts, just a guess!
What the hell were they thinking? Just add the flashy card stuff to a proven OS and add more processing capability to the hardware so developers can take atvantage of it and keep building on what you have. Don't throw it all away and start over. There is no room for nubees in this market!

Gary

I don't think PalmOS is going to be a help at this point. What they should've done with the release of the Pre is license Classic and have it pre-installed on the phone. That way, people could've moved their old apps over. Back when the Pre was new, and Android wasn't the behemoth that it is now, having all those Palm OS apps would've at least put them in the number 2 spot for a while. Instead, they banked on developers making new apps, and relegated Classic to a paid add-on status.

At this point, I think Classic is irrelevant. PalmOS is too ancient to stand up to the likes of Android and iOS. (Is there anything you can do on PalmOS you can't do on Android or iOS?) It's true that there isn't a lot of room for newbies in the market, but this isn't the market for old farts, either.

Releasing the full APIs for the hardware would be a good start. It's a little embarrassing that almost two years in, WebOS phones don't have apps for scanning bar codes, recognizing music played in a room, etc. I know the homebrew community is up to the challenge if they're given the tools, but HP needs to cough them up, pronto.


RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 4:44:21 AM # Q
>At this point, I think Classic is irrelevant. PalmOS is too ancient to stand up to the likes of Android and iOS.

agreed. the world has moved on a long time ago. does anyone really think this would significantly drive sales? of course not. Classic was already available for a small price at launch and it made no difference. giving it away free and bundling it wouldn't have done much more then or now.

>Is there anything you can do on PalmOS you can't do on Android or iOS?

this is the key question and the answer is no. and when i ask PalmOS App diehards what PalmOS app is so unique and critical and not available on Android or iPhone they can't give me an answer.


RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/23/2011 7:34:37 AM # Q
Gekko wrote:

giving it away free and bundling it wouldn't have done much more then or now.

I think giving it away for free at launch (as a lot of people were hoping they'd do, as I recall) would have been a way to say to the Palm faithful, "You don't have to leave your apps behind. You can take everything you love about your PalmOS device with you." The second you make someone pay for something, you're introducing a risk, however small. And some customers had significant investments tied up in these apps. (Look at apps like HandBase and the non-free version of Documents to Go.) People would've been a lot more comfortable making the jump if they knew that Classic was pre-installed from the get-go, so that they could use their old apps until substitutes came along.


RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 7:44:26 AM # Q

did you ever use it? it was almost as buggy as the original FrankenGarnet. i'm not sure it would have made much of a difference in the grand scheme of things especially given all of the other missteps and shortcomings. come on - a bundled free Classic would not have stopped the onslaught and ultimate demise of Palm - and i hope that's not what you're saying. we would be in the same place we are today regardless.

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/23/2011 9:35:03 AM # Q
Gekko wrote:

did you ever use it? it was almost as buggy as the original FrankenGarnet. i'm not sure it would have made much of a difference in the grand scheme of things especially given all of the other missteps and shortcomings. come on - a bundled free Classic would not have stopped the onslaught and ultimate demise of Palm - and i hope that's not what you're saying. we would be in the same place we are today regardless.

Do I think it would've made a huge difference? No. But regardless of how well Classic worked (and the few times I tried it, I was probably 50/50 in terms of success), the mere perception that you could take your apps with you from FrankenGarnet would've helped the Pre's adoption rate. I can't see it saving Palm from HP, because I don't think there were that many PalmOS users to save Palm. What that would've taken is a more sustained adoption rate outside of the PalmOS faithful.

The Pre's initial sales were good (not iPhone good, obviously, but good nonetheless). Where they tanked was in following-up. The ad campaign with the "creepy Pre girl" sucked, they bungled the release of the SDK, and they didn't put all their APIs on the table. And they probably didn't have the cash to follow-up on the Pre (or at least the Pixi) with a worthwhile successor. Rather than updating the phone to try and compete with the likes of Apple and Android, they just threw memory (and a slightly faster processor, in the case of the Pre 2) at the Pre and Pixi and hoped no one would notice that they were essentially the same phones.

I loved my Pre in the beginning. It's even an okay phone now. But since my contract is up in July, I'm becoming more and more convinced (unless they announce a new phone for Sprint in February) that my next phone will run Android.

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
LiveFaith @ 1/23/2011 11:57:31 AM # Q
Classic bundled would have been a nice bridge by Palm. They could have probably milked a "20,000 apps available" scheme as an ad point. Could have jumped right into the "we've got apps too" caravan.

Remember, reality does not have a lot to do with marketing and public perception. Apple has been masters at this. The average consumer believes that the iPod / Apple invented MP3 players, the iPhone is the first phone that can have apps added to it, a retina display actually means something and nobody else has it, and cut / paste is a new concept. They deserve credit for this.

Palm is the alter-ego concerning this. They laid egg after egg and Classic was not enough to save them. Like the lizard said, Classic itself is a buggy, not very valuable emulator.

They should have never abandoned true user sync of their data, and should have never outsourced backward compatibility with a relatively popular platform. But, they were well into the "in need of a miracle" category at that point anyway. Nada.
Pat Horne

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 12:33:23 PM # Q

so i've had my EVO for about 6 months now. just for shits and giggles i broke out my backup phone from storage - my old Centro. i have not touched my Centro in 6+ months. i took it out of the package and popped the battery back in. i was shocked to see the battery still at 99%! as you can imagine - it was strange and surreal to navigate around and view the very small square 2.2" 320x320 display. after about a minute i took the battery out and put everything back in the box and back in storage.

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/23/2011 1:28:16 PM # Q
LiveFaith wrote:
They should have never abandoned true user sync of their data, and should have never outsourced backward compatibility with a relatively popular platform. But, they were well into the "in need of a miracle" category at that point anyway. Nada.

I don't think the user sync was much of an issue. It was certainly what Palm was most famous for, but Synergy meant being able to take anything on your phone and have access to it on multiple devices (among its other benefit of consolidating all your different information sources). The problem is, they didn't take Synergy far enough. If they had a Notes app that could sync with Google Docs the way the calendar app syncs with Google Calendar, that would've been huge. And as has been thoroughly discussed, notes should be more integrated with the calendar app. At one point, I was willing to chalk it up to Palm giving app developers room to come in with their own third-party solutions, but at this point, it's time for HP to step up and make the improvements.

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 1:35:50 PM # Q

yeah asking for cable sync and classic apps is like crying about not having a stylus. what do you want to blame next? no Athena connector support???

poor Developer support/relations/interest is a problem. Documents To Go?

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/23/2011 3:44:14 PM # Q
I don't know. Maybe I'm weird, but I do miss styli. I used the Notepad app in PalmOS a lot. Being able to write on the screen is a better solution, in some situations, than typing.

I'd also like to see some decent support for Bluetooth. I could do a lot with a Stowaway-type keyboard and a Bluetooth-enabled Pre. I took notes like that on my Centro (albeit over IR, not Bluetooth). Retiring my Palm keyboard when I got my Pre was a tough blow.

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 4:34:04 PM # Q

this seems like a good deal for a budget conscious consumer -

$25/Month - Unlimited Data, Text, and 300 Anytime Minutes

http://www.virginmobileusa.com/cell-phone-plans/beyond-talk-plans.jsp

Samsung Intercept

http://www.virginmobileusa.com/cell-phones/samsung-intercept-phone.jsp

and coming soon?

http://www.androidcentral.com/virgin-mobiles-lg-optimus-v-priced-149

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/23/2011 5:17:54 PM # Q
For the prices of those, though, I could stay on Sprint and get an EVO or EVO Shift. The Droid Incredible is also tempting, although I'd have to switch to Verizon, which I've heard mixed things about in my area.
RE: Not Really Sure About This...
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 5:29:35 PM # Q

i was talking about the Virgin Mobile service plan. $25/month is pretty good voice unlimited data + text + 300 voice minutes. really good for someone who makes few phone calls.

yes - if i was you i would stay with Sprint and get the EVO. my monthly bill is $73 after all discounts, fees, and taxes. i have Unlimited Voice Mobile to Mobile to ANY carrier, Unlimited Texts, MMS, Data, GPS, 4G, Voice 7pm, Nights & Weekends, and 450 Landline Minutes. great value.

what are you waiting for?

RE: Not Really Sure About This...
bhartman34 @ 1/23/2011 6:07:05 PM # Q
I'm waiting for July. :) I don't have the money right now to invest in a new phone, and by July, something better might come along, or the EVO might be cheaper. I'd love to upgrade from my Pre, but it doesn't suck so badly that I'd spend $100-$150 upgrading it. Especially since I don't know yet if HP will pull this one out and come up with a phone by July that I could actually buy and feel good about. It's certainly not looking good for HP, but I'm an optimist. ;)
RE: Not Really Sure About This...
mikecane @ 1/24/2011 4:07:06 PM # Q
Yo, Gekko, Sprint is screwing the pooch!

http://mikecanex.wordpress.com/2011/01/18/is-the-iphone-coming-to-sprint/

And I'm reallll pissed the tablet will not be on Sprint first. And apparently no 3G/4G tablet at the start either!

Reply to this comment

PDAs are dead

T_W @ 1/22/2011 7:01:44 PM # Q
What???? There is no way HPalm would release a handheld computing device without a built in cellular radio and phone.

Gartner said PDAs were dead 5 years ago. Noone is going to buy a handheld device simply for computing, personal management, media, and gaming.

Now excuse me, I have to go play Angry Birds on my iPod touch,

RE: PDAs are dead
Gekko @ 1/23/2011 4:36:45 AM # Q

iPods and iPads are not PDAs.

RE: PDAs are dead
gmayhak @ 1/23/2011 8:01:13 AM # Q
They are for me.
Tech Center Labs
www.talestuff.com
www.iTalentProductions.com
RE: PDAs are dead
hotpaw4 @ 1/23/2011 5:50:31 PM # Q
Ok, someone doesn't want to call my iOS device a PDA. The small ones fit in my PalmPilot belt case. I cable and sync data on them to my Mac. I use them for short memos, calendar, todo list and contacts, and write software for them using an IDE which distantly reminds me of CodeWarrior. I even have a stylus for the capacitive touch screens (but seldom use it). Maybe someone thinks that they're not PDAs because they don't run on AAA batteries?
RE: PDAs are dead
dagwud @ 1/23/2011 5:58:20 PM # Q
Whether or not an iPhod or an Android phone serves as a PDA depends very much on the user.

The first apps I installed on my Android phone were ones that duplicated or approximated features of my Palm TX (e.g., gTasks). I use my phone for everything I used to use my Palm TX for - except I haven't bought HandDBase for Android yet.

PDAs aren't dead. They've just evolved.
--
PalmPilot Pro (1997) -> III (1998) -> Vx (1999) -> m500 (2001) -> m515 (2002) -> Tx (2007) -> HTC Aria (2010)

RE: PDAs are dead
LiveFaith @ 1/23/2011 6:13:54 PM # Q
Palm missed a good market for WebOS by missing out on a PDA. Could have popularized the platform and brought in more devs. I could care less, but gamers love WebOS.

I wonder if HP has it in the roadmap? It's just a tiny tablet afterall.
Pat Horne

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