Report: HP WebOS tablets to boast cloud storage, 'premium audio'

Engadget says the WebOS-based tablets Hewlett-Packard is expected to unveil next month could offer cloud storage and "premium audio," likely powered by HP's Beats audio.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
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The upcoming webOS-based HP tablet?
The upcoming WebOS-based Hewlett-Packard tablet? Engadget

As Hewlett-Packard's February 9 WebOS event nears, details on the company's rumored tablets continue to emerge.

Citing an unnamed source, Engadget is reporting that HP will unveil two tablets, known as "Topaz" and "Opal." The site's source says Topaz will feature "nearly identical" measurements to Apple's iPad and likely feature a 1,024 x 768 TFT LCD display, though Engadget said its source "wasn't 100 percent on this." Topaz is expected to hit store shelves three months prior to Opal, which will offer a smaller footprint than its bigger cousin, the source claims. Opal is expected to have a 1,024 x 768 TFT LCD display, as well.

Engadget's source said the tablets will come with "premium audio," likely powered by HP's Beats audio. In addition, the devices will ship with access to cloud storage. Engadget's source said that "tens of gigabytes" of storage will be available to users.

But that's not all. The publication said that it received a survey, conducted by GfK Custom Research North America and commissioned by HP, from an anonymous tipster. That survey examined consumer interest in several features, including a wireless dock that not only charges the device, but also "transforms the tablet into an alarm clock, digital photo frame, and GPS unit." Engadget said that the survey also mentions a "Tap-to-Share" feature that lets users physically tap a device and HP's tablets together, and transfer content to the slate.

In addition, the survey asked for consumer reactions to Flash support, "true multitasking," and the ability to answer calls on the tablet.

Although GFK's survey doesn't mean that the company's tablets will offer those features, Engadget pointed out that the survey specifically said that the options mentioned were "different things this new tablet computer can do."

As one might expect, HP has been tight-lipped about the eventual release of WebOS-based tablets. The company also did not immediately respond to request for comment on Engadget's report.

But as more rumors surface about WebOS-based tablets, it's becoming clearer that the company's February 9 event will put slates center stage. And at that event, we'll likely learn the key details that so far, have been kept secret, namely how much the tablets will cost and when they will ship.