The first tablet PC in the world that would run under the webOS mobile operating system is expected to land on shelves sometime in March, in line with the “early 2011” estimation that HP provided for the release of this device.
It wasn’t long before HP launched the Slate 500, which runs Windows and is targeted at the enterprise. Since then, Palm hasn’t said much else about webOS’s future on tablets.
A group of BMO Capital Markets analysts made a visit to the Asia Pacific region to see for themselves what to expect on the high-tech front in 2011. One of these researchers was Keith Bachman and, according to him, we can expect the first webOS-powered tablet in March, 2011.
Bachman is not bullish on Palm’s chances of success with a webOS tablet. He said the device will have a niche market, but won’t be a smash hit like the iPad. BMO forecasts that half of the 40 million tablets sold in 2011 will be Apple’s iPad, and the remaining half will go to the rest of the market.
The device would boast a 5-inch touchscreen display, making it slightly larger than current smartphones, though some suggest it might be included in this device segment when announced officially.
webOS is Palm’s smartphone operating system, and seems that it might scale well to the tablet form factor. A lot of variables, however, will play a role in determining whether or not such a product will be a success in the market.