The Other HP Slate Runs On Android

Last night, during his keynote address at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer showed off a prototype for a new HP Slate computer running on Windows 7. It was supposed to be an Apple-stealing moment and it was Microsoft’s moment, which is probably why Hewlett-Packard has not yet publicly mentioned that it is working on another tablet/slate computer that is running on Android. You know, Google’s mobile operating system.

HP did announce an Android-powered netbook yesterday, but that has a keyboard. A source who has seen a prototype of HP’s Android Slate says it looks just like the Windows-powered one Ballmer held last night (see image below), maybe a little smaller. “It is almost identical in every respect to the one he showed off except for the OS,” says my source.

And that, my friends, could be all the difference in the world. Already, developers have created more than 10,000 apps for Android mobile phones, and the launch of the Nexus One will keep pushing the OS into more and more hands. These apps might have to be modified for a tablet, but it shouldn’t be too much of a stretch. Already, a number of Android tablets are on the way from Archos, Dell, and Notion Ink. It looks like you can add HP to that list.

The bigger question that all of these Android tablets raise is what about Chrome OS? Maybe these are just stop-gaps until the Chrome Netbooks and Tablets are ready for the market.

What would you rather buy, an HP Slate that runs on Windows 7 or one that runs on Android?

(The video below is a sneak peek at the Windows HP Slate, which is where the image above is taken from):