The Physical Side of the TouchPad

Day 3 with the HP TouchPad and I thought I'd share some pictures and thoughts on the physical features of it. A lot of reviewers and sites panned it because, well, it looked like the original iPad, or like most other tablet devices. Now maybe I'm just not imaginative enough but I'm not sure how to make a tablet, a flat screen with camera(s), speakers, and some buttons, look much different than the others that came before it. With that being said, the TouchPad resembles an iPad (the first one, not it's anorexic cousin), and most other tablets out there.

It is a little hefty, especially when compared to the iPad 2, but it's not uncomfortably so, for me anyway. Your color choices are black... and black, which is to say it only comes in one color, though there's rumor that AT&T will be getting a white one with "4G" connectivity. So if white's your thing hold out a little longer. Now about the casing; I've used many a touch device, and there's no way to get around it, but they all collect finger prints and smudges. Some handle this better than others. The shiny, very nice looking, glossy black back of the TouchPad doesn't just collect finger prints it sucks them off your fingers. The screen really isn't much better. If HP was going to copy Apple I wish they had copied that oleophobic coating it uses on their devices. But, that's my only grip with the physical features of the TouchPad.

There's only one front facing 1.3 megapixel camera at the top (in portrait mode), a center/card button at the bottom, a mini USB port for charging and to bring data over from a computer, 2 speakers, a power button, a 3.5mm audio output jack, and a volume rocker. Some will be quick to point out the lack of a rear facing camera. To those I say, "I don't care". I refuse to hold up my tablet to take a picture. You probably have a cellphone with a camera in your pocket, use that or get a real camera. Currently this camera is only able to be used in a Skype video call, though that might change. The speakers by themselves are nothing to write home about, but since they are connected to a Beats Audio processing unit they are able to make some pretty good sounds. I was actually impressed with the quality of sound they were able to put out. I had first written the whole Beats Audio thing off as a marketing gimmick, but music doesn't suck when played through them. It won't replace my Bose, but I won't feel like I'm listening to music through tin cans. The other features are pretty self-explanatory.

The next post will be on the webOS operating system, the apps included, and the 3.0.2 update that was pushed out Monday.

TouchPad Gallery:


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