back to article One last production run for TouchPad

HP swears this is it: the end, the final, never-to-be-repeated, absolutely the last time: but there will be just one more production run of TouchPads for punters that missed out on cheap-as-chips deals when it killed off the unloved fondleslab. When retailers cut the price to shift the just-launched end-of-life stock, …


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  1. Anonymous Coward


    HP is going to manufacture more new TouchPads (costing them $296/$318:$318-Bill-of-Materials.aspx) and then sell them for $99?

    Well more power to them if they actually do this - keeping potential customers happy rather at the cost of a large loss on every unit sold is an interesting strategy.

    1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      Money down the drain, but it depends where the money is now.

      They may well have already paid for these parts, so putting them together and selling them is less revenue negative than just disposing of them.

      The parts might also be spares, continued storage of which would be unnecessary for an unsupported product.

    2. Anonymous Coward

      Yes, they are

      Because they've already bought the parts to make them from suppliers etc.

      What else are you going to do with a load of 9.8 inch touchscreens in a warehouse in china?

      Also, the OS isn't orphaned. And people will get android running on it, and potentially ubuntu. So it's $318 bill of materials hardware, pre-assembly, for $99.

      So yes, it kind of is worth trying to get hold of one at that price. Unless you can suggest a cheaper way to get equivalent hardware? No?

  2. ceebee

    as one ...

    ...who managed to get the $98AUD Tpad and who is really happy with it... every Tpad sold is one more WebOS user.

    If Hp is smart in any way, they will keep some back for the developer community. If it really wants WebOS to remain viable it needs developers producing apps and developers need Touchpads and Pre phones to work with.

    But then Hp has not shown too many smarts of late!

    1. Thomas 4

      Good news

      Might be able to snag a cheap Touchpad for myself next time around.

  3. baswell

    Left over parts?

    They may well have a warehouse full of parts and assemblies that they can't use for anything else.

    That means they might limit their losses by producing a bunch more and selling them for, say, $250.

    That way they get $250 back for each $300 investment, which is a better deal than scrapping $200 time 100.000 units in parts, losing $5M instead of $20M.

    1. Marvin the Martian


      But everybody knows they've been selling now for $100--$200, so reaching shops at $250 in a few weeks/months time is not going to help.

      And argued e.g. on TheRegister, most of the shopping frenzy was a the idea it was a unique opportunity; people felt they got a fantastic deal vs. the $400 asking price (the day before) --- many people wouldn't have bought the $200 device if sold previously at that price.

      So a $250 asking price means they will want to get it for $75--$150 max! Paying $250 means having missed the boat on paying $100, and gives people (irrationally) a feeling of having lost out (rather than paying a fair price for a quite good machine).

      1. Y||B

        ebay is always right

        hmm ... if the only way to get a new one at the moment is to fork over $250 on ebay (and they sell like quite fine at that price), dropping more for $250 might actually work ... or make it $200, which still halves the loss.

  4. MurrayH
    Thumb Up

    I can feel the strategy

    Seeing as how the last one turned out, I can imagine that we will see this occur right around Christmas time. That way, they can spread the pain and joy to all their competitors, as they dominate the marketplace by shorting everyone else.

    1. Ian Farrell
      Thumb Up

      You old cynic!

      But I think you're probably spot on!

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Is that how HD-DVD dominated the marketplace? They also had a last firesale...

      Unless there's a long term strategy and actual abundant supply, it will merely make a blip in sales.

      I also wonder if retailers will want to carry it, since the last firesale left their websites dead for a whole day or 2. Having your website down for everyone else a whole day at Xmas time is not a good idea, and the sales margins on these tablets surely can't be that high.

  5. Jared Vanderbilt

    The Who promoters at it again?

    Their farewell tour began about 29 years ago. I won't get fooled again.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      re Jered Vanderbilt

      Wrong song.

      Lets try

      Tommy: See me, feel me, touch me, heal me.

      See me, feel me, touch me, heal me.

      See me, feel me, touch me, heal me.

      See me, feel me, touch me, heal me, heal me, heal me.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Mama's got a squeezebox

      Or was that a fondleslab?

  6. Robert E A Harvey

    heavy traffic has whacked its sign-on page out of service.


    And these people are giving up hardware sales to make money telling people about software?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      "Reports" seem highly exaggerated. The sign in page has been fine this week. It isn't very rational to build your sign up page to support 1,000,000 users simultaneously.

      The web sites going offline from the traffic trying to find a touchpad was much more impressive.

  7. Steve Evans


    Can't believe they are actually doing another production run, which will do nothing but increase interest in an OS they have dumped, at a loss...

    Something here does not add up.

    1. Stuart 22

      Think carefully before buying

      I don't think so. I got a 32GB version. Nice kit, nice OS but a lemon when it comes to Apps. Basic requirements for a fondleslab are a decent browser, email and media playback..

      Browser doesn't work reliably with two many high profile websites (this includes BBC, Google Streetview & iBulletin forums). Email doesn't work with Dovecot IMAP (known for some time and not fixed), and media doesn't play mpg, avi ...)

      My OSF smartphone makes a better slab!

      Yep Android Apps have their quirks. But there is almost always a good free alternative to fit one's own quirks. WebOS doesn't and I would think never. The CEO was dead right in killing the product stone dead on sight. It says something about HP's previous marketing expertise that it got so far. It bears all the hallmarks of an engineer led project. Nothing against engineers but they, and marketeers, should never be let out on their own.

      Hopefully a stable Android or Ubuntu OS will arrive eventually. But don't bet on it. There's a lot of showstoppers in cracking all the device drivers to make it certain.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        I'll have yours if you don't want it...

        For £99... ;-)

        1. Stuart 22

          You really wannit?

          Purchase price: £115 + £19.99 for cover (pretty essential). Cash, collect SE London.

          And here beginneth RegBay ...

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Very very tempted... ;-)

            Such a shame El Reg doesn't do private messages... ;-)

      2. bob, mon!
        Thumb Up

        One good-working app

        It runs the Kindle app quite well, so far. So I have a large-screen, backlit, color Kindle with 10 times the storage, for $150US. An excellent deal.

        And the browser works *much* better than Kindle's little foray into that field. Haven't even bothered to try the email, I just don't care. I have better things to read.

        SWMBO wants one too, if we can snag one of those "final-run" units.

        1. MJG

          Kindle App

          Unfortunately kindle not availble in the UK App Catalog. Quite happy with the TP, but does need a couple of minor updates to make it a little more stable. Won't touch ubuntu/android till they got it nicely sorted! But don't regret getting the 32GB for £115!

          Hope the Kindle app makes it to the UK catalog soon!

      3. Anonymous Coward


        You're really complaining that Google doesn't support Streetview on one of its COMPETITORS products?

        Hey my Apple software won't run on Windows. Microsoft must suck.

  8. Dan 55 Silver badge

    I hope they've learnt how not to annoy everyone from the last fire sale

    But judging by the way they're going about the Pre 3 it looks like they haven't.

  9. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward 101


      ...what a brilliant plan! Remind me though - when exactly do the profits enter the picture?

      1. David Dawson

        Come on! Its obvious!

        1. Sell lots of products below cost

        2. ?

        3. Profit!


        1. Andus McCoatover

          Underpants gnomes...

          South park.

          I call TROLL (Or gnome, anyway...;-)

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        "...what a brilliant plan! Remind me though - when exactly do the profits enter the picture?"

        Yeah like those retards at Google offering search for free. HOW WILL THEY EVER MAKE MONEY.

        Oh wait, HP webOS search revenue already surpassed all Android tablets COMBINED. Android, made by -the- advertising firm of our generation: Google. With this tablet HP has laid the smackdown on Apple and Google at the same time.

    2. TeeCee Gold badge

      @Erik Borgo

      Unfortunately, "PC's becoming a sunset industry" only exists in the minds of the more loony industry analysts and the dreams of the tablet pushers.

      Hint: Your job may be possible to do using only one 10" screen and a "point and peck" onscreen touch keyboard taking up a third of it, but mine definately isn't.

      As I said elsewhere, last time round it was thin clients that were supposed to do for the PC. At least that one made some sort of sense, even if it didn't happen. Anyone betting the farm on tablets displacing PCs should be top of any 419ers list of gullible targets.

      Dent the sales of low-end laptops? Yes. Increase the number of suited idiots going; "Looky. I haz iPad!!11!!" in meetings? Yes. Displace laptops entirely in the consumer space? Possibly. Change the world? No.

  10. Anonymous Coward

    you have to wonder

    if HP didn't miss a trick here.

    The TouchPad was never going to compete with the iPad and top end Android tablets, the WebOS ecosystem just isn't there, but if HP had decided to stuff the first million or so TouchPads into the market as loss leaders for WebOS and the Pre 3...who knows. Even at a break even of between £200 and £250 I think they would have sold decent numbers which would at least have given HP a foot in the door and a platform to build on.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not break even

      £200-£250 is the bare minimum *production* cost. Someone needs to pay the WebOS developer's salaries, licenses, patents... that all adds up and pushes the actual cost much higher.

      How would HP ever get back those "subsidies" with apps going so cheap (noticed how tablet/mobile games are so much cheaper than consoles?) and without hair pulling commissions on app/media sales? Or some sort of subscription?

      It would just haemorrhage money..

  11. gautam

    One more lesson

    After Nokia/Ms deal, this is one more lesson for aspiring MBA's on how to buy and screw a decent product ( the Web-os in this case) incurring lossses all the way, when you dont have clue as to what you are going to do with the purchase of Palm.

  12. A Butler

    Best tablet that supports direct printing - HP not as dumb as you all think

    I cannot believe no one has see the printing angle here, the touchpad has the best direct printing support of all tablets including the holy grail Ipad.

    They get every punter to buy or hook a HP printer to the device then the money will come back on printer ink or toner.

    For the record I paired my Touchpad with a HP Photosmart Wireless e-All-in-One Printer (CN245B) that once hooked up to my WI-FI, worked like a charm and at a brilliant price of 50euro.

  13. Syren Baran

    Weird as it sounds

    There might actually be some kind of master plan behind this foolish behavior.

    Given the recent patent craze the Palm patents might actually be worth more than Nortels, maybe something like 4 billion.

    Add an installed base of a couple o million devices, enough to attract a fair amount of developers.

    Suddenly the the investment of 1.2 billion for Palm, plus a couple of hundred million for market share, could easily quadrouble.

  14. BRYN

    How long

    Until HP open sources the webOs and then licences it f to wwhomever wants to use it. It could be about to go into more direct comptition with Android, via third party companies......

  15. technohead95


    ...if HP know they fly off the shelves at $99, why don't they sell it for $150. I'm sure they'll still sell them all just as quickly. If a product flies off the shelf then it's probably priced too cheaply (not that I'm complaining as a consumer)

  16. Tony Paulazzo


    I was kind'a hoping this move would make some of the other manufacturers sit up and take notice, and do some drastic price cutting, but nothing yet.

    Staples are selling the Transformer for £358 (UK) with the keypad, drop another ton off that and I'm in - the transformer also includes an SD slot so you're not constrained by the devices built in storage limitation.

    1. Anonymous John


      Search the Staples site for "Tablets" and the first two hits are dishwasher tablets.

    2. Erudite Luddite

      HTC Flyer is now down to £329

      The WiFi version of the HTC Flyer is now down to £329 @ Carphone Warehouse (from a previously ridiculous £479).

      That's *starting* to get closer to a realistic purchase price...

  17. csmac3144


    This awkward portmanteau was mildly amusing. Once.

  18. Gerrit Hoekstra

    I forsee a Linux Distro for the TouchPad

    It's just a matter of time. You know how pervasive those pesky little penguins can be!

    1. Andus McCoatover

      Seems Ubuntu can be made to run on it....

  19. BePea

    @Tony Paulazzo

    Staples offer for the Transformer is ex VAT. I'd been looking at these just before reading your post so jumped straight on Staples to order thinking I was saving 60 quid but with VAT it adds up to £433... It is £417 on Amazon... Gutted.

  20. HP Cynic

    FAQ Feck

    According to the FAQ they are only going to issue the new batch to people who registered interest / were disappointed last time.

    I reached the "Confirm Sale" final button before the website crashed out and after that the only news on there was "Sold Out".

    So I think this is for people who managed to press that button THEN replied to the mail saying "Sorry your order won't complete as we sold out".

    I know a few people here who got several and also plenty who bought them with no intention of using them but could not resist a bargain. I have no no laptop or pad but was considering getting an iPad 3 so this is a triple slap in the face to have the HP pad sell out in public, sell out on the staff offer and then not have a way to register for one of the last batch. :(

  21. Andus McCoatover

    What was wrong with the thing??

    I just don't get it.....

  22. Anonymous Coward

    Been There, Done That

    Reminds me of the run on the TI99/4A of yesteryear.

    Its cheap... its obsolete before the box is opened... you can't sell one two months later even for what you groped it at a firesale for... but boy what a rush scoring something unsupported by the manufacturer (I guess with no warranty either?) that is plummeting in value faster than the inventory is dropping!

    Anyone want a new-in-the-box TI99/4A?

  23. mr3

    It's all about platform, not business, nor OSes

    It's all about platform, not business, nor OSes. Thinking of as it's Intel doing that...

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