UPDATE / Feb 27: HP says its Slate7 - a low-cost 7-inch tablet running Google's Android software, will be available in New Zealand from April for $229.
The Slate7 represents HP's third strategic shift following its tablets based on WebOS (software that stemmed from its acquisition of Palm) and Microsoft's Windows 8.
But while WebOS has been flicked off, HP says it will continue to work on Windows-based tablets in parallel.
The low-cost Slate7's specs include an ARM dual dore Cortex-A9 1.6 GHz processor, a modest 3-megapixel rear camera and VGA from camera for video chat, beats audio and support for HP wireless printing.
More specs are here.
GLOBAL TECH WRAP: Samsung takes on iPad Mini, HP goes Android
Feb 25: Samsung has used the giant World Mobile Congress in Barcelona to preview the Galaxy Note 8 - a new tablet that Time sees as possibly the most direct competitor to Apple’s iPad Mini. The Wall Street Journal's All Things D blog notes the Note 8 comes with "an S Pen stylus like the rest of the Galaxy Note series. But it offers a number of new features not found on the other devices. The first is something called “Reading Mode.” Whenever you launch an e-reader app, the tablet automatically adjusts the contrast of the screen to help reduce eye strain and provide a reading experience more akin to an e-ink display." Pricing and global release dates have yet to be announced.
The Barcelona trade show also saw a surprise announcement from HP: it has a 7-inch Android tablet on the way in April (US pricing will be $US169). The company said it was still committed to Microsoft Windows.