HP, the struggling PC maker, has jumped back to the smartphone/tablet race with a couple of phablets announced specifically for the Indian market. HP has announced that the Slate 6 VivoTab and Slate 7 VivoTab phablets will launch in India next month, but hasn’t disclosed the complete details as yet.
As the names suggest, the Slate 6 VivoTab and Slate 7 VivoTab come with 6-inch and 7-inch displays respectively. Both of them will run the Android 4.2 JellyBean OS and will come with quad-core processor. It’s still not clear which SoC is powering the phablets, but what’s known is that both of them will come with 16GB of storage, extendable upto 32GB via microSD card.
HP exited the smartphone space back in 2011 after selling the webOS division, and had negligible presence in the tablet space. Ron Coughlin, VP for the consumer PC business told Re/code that the company chose India and not a market in North America or Europe to debut the devices because of market preferences and because the market for phones and smart devices in India is growing.
Phablets have been increasingly becoming popular, specially in Asian countries. Companies like Samsung and Lenovo have been releasing tablets with 3G Voice calling facility to address the growing demand for such devices. For now, this Indian launch appears to be more of an experiment for HP, which is ruling the roost in Indian PC market for a while now, even though Lenovo has displaced it from the perch globally.
The display on Slate 6 is 1280 x 720px, while it is 1280 x 800px on the Slate 7. Both have an IPS display and come with front-facing stereo speakers. They’ll have a two-megapixel front-facing camera and five-megapixel rear camera with flash. Pricing details aren’t available yet.