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£90 HP TouchPad gets one last batch

HP is to make one last batch of HP TouchPad tablets to meet demand from bargain-hunters.

Look alive, bargain-hunters: HP is to make one last batch of HP TouchPad tablets. The discontinued webOS tablet sparked a buying frenzy when the price was slashed by 70 per cent, so HP is launching one final production run.

HP revealed the news in a blog post this week, although it has since clarified the extra units will only be available in North America. The TouchPad, and its webOS smart phone sibling the Pre3, had been killed off by HP and were destined to a quiet death until their prices were drastically slashed.

We like webOS, with its nifty interface of virtual cards. But no-one was interested in buying one, with HP apparently losing money on the troubled device. The company wasted no time in dropping webOS like a hot rock, announcing that it was killing the operating system barely a month after it went on sale in the UK.

But when the price went through the floor, the TouchPad went from white elephant to solid-gold bargain and stores sold out in double-quick time. Thanks to this final production run, discount-happy shoppers have another crack at the cheap-as-chips tablet.

Whether the final batch of TouchPads will have the same bargain-bin pricing hasn't been confirmed yet. But it's likely to be on the cheap side, as HP has committed to limiting how many tablets each customer can buy. There will only be a limited quantity of tablets built -- HP wants to use up the components -- so when they're gone they're gone.

As much as it would amuse us if the TouchPad's slashed price made it more popular than it would otherwise have been, even these sales are unlikely to grant webOS a reprieve. HP is pulling back from consumer products across the board to focus on business kit and software -- although Samsung is reported to be interested in buying webOS. Samsung already uses Android, Windows Phone and its own Bada, but hey -- you can never have too many operating systems, right?

The final TouchPads won't be on sale for "at least a few weeks". Will you have lost interest by then? And did you bag yourself a TouchPad or Pre 3 in the HP sale? Tell us how you got on in the comments or on our Facebook page.

Update: Added clarification that the new production run will only come to North America (via Mobot).