We were one of the first to get a glimpse of the unreleased HP Touchpad Tablet today over at the HP Booth at the Gadget Show Live, and we’ve got some interesting video footage for you.
Unfortunately the few Touchpads that were on show at the stand were strictly for demonstration purposes, so we couldn’t get our hands on one or have a play, but we did get a neat video demonstration of the technology HP are calling “Touchstone”.
Touchstone has already been used in the Palm Pre handset, and uses a form of conductive magnet to charge devices on a Palm “Stone” accessory. Since the acquisition of Palm, HP have implemented Touchstone into the HP Pre 3 and Veer, and now the Touchpad too.
Touchstone technology now not only charges devices wirelessly, but it allows you to transfer content from one HP device to another simply by touching the two together. In our video above, you’ll see the HP rep touch a HP Pre 3 with the Touchpad, causing the webpage that is open on the Touchpad to appear on the HP Pre 3 mobile phone.
Our agent also advised us that if you pair a HP Pre or Veer handset with the Touchpad via Bluetooth, you’ll be able to answer calls as well as receive and reply sms messages on the Touchpad itself. This is a feature we don’t think HP made us aware of when the Touchpad was initially released; our agent explained it is a relatively new technology which is still being polished for release.
Elsewhere on the device we were treated to a demonstration of the new WebOS 3.0 operating system, along with the new Synergy features HP have been working on. The device is looking very, very impressive and has every right to be a challenger to the iPad and Android Tablet markets.
WebOS 3.0 is very fast, smooth and intuitive, and Synergy has several neat and useful features. Other than the Touchstone technology, we were most impressed with how HP have integrated Synergy into their photos application. From the native photo app you can now pull down all photos from Facebook, Twitter, Picassa, Photobooth, Flickr and more into one place, along with photos synced to the device. Comments and info on photos can be viewed simply by tapping an icon in the top right corner – it’s all very easy.
When you get a HP Touchpad (or mobile phone, in fact), you’ll be asked to create a “login”. This login allows your HP Device(s) to automatically back up to the cloud once every 24 hours, or manually when prompted. If you have a HP mobile phone as well as a Touchpad, both will use the same account and automatically back up to the same place. Our HP rep couldn’t confirm exactly how much cloud space each user will be entitled to for device backups, however.
We were advised that apps for the Touchpad, Pre 3 and Veer will be available from HP’s new “Apps Catalog”, and that HP have been working closely with the top 20 app developers from other main mobile platforms to create apps for the store. One such example was Angry Birds; Rovio Mobile had managed to port their hugely popular game to the WebOS 3.0 platform in less than 2 weeks.
Unfortunately there still isn’t an official release date for the UK, we were told “Summer time” and that “things were still being finished”.