HP Touchpad Fire Sale



#27

A friend in Europe asked me to buy the discounted HP Touchpad. Since I was on vacation at the beaches of North Carolina (far from major retail electronics stores) I asked my son who lives in the Phoenix area to do the shopping. He went today Sunday morning to several electronics retail stores and discovered that all the discounted HP Touchpad were sold. When he called me to tell me, I rushed to my computer to order online. While online I saw the web page updated to say SOLD OUT!

I chatted with my son about what happened. We both felt that HP should have sold the Touchpad at the reduced prices to gain a foothold in Apple's territory. Rather, HP felt they could charge more money for their tablets.

I feel that HP made two mistakes. Overpricing their Touchpad and then dumping it. The speed in which their product sold tells me that their initial pricing was wrong and their impatience was even more wrong!

Namir


Edited: 21 Aug 2011, 10:21 p.m.


#28

Abandon ship ! Abandon ship ! Lower the lifeboats, executives first.


#29

LOL! Well, also sad in a way ...

#30

I can only imagine that HP's executives will be busy congratulating each other and voting themselves bonuses this morning. :-(


John


#31

Unfortunately this is probably more true than not.

#32

I agree with Marwan. The truth is HP executives should lament at the major faux pas they did. Just because Apple was top dog in the tablet business does not mean they will always be. There is always a plan to change that. Think of the how Lotus 123 dethroned Visicalc and then how Excel did the same to Lotus 123. If the executives of the companies behind these products had the HP executives attitudes, we'd still be using Visicalc (version 12.5???) today!!

Namir

#33

The 32 GB was selling for $149 and the 16 GB for $99. Staples further discounted the 16 GB to $49.


John


#34

Yeah, I've been watching it since Friday night, when the announced the fire sale. Saturday at noon there were reports that 1.5 million units were sold. Best Buy was going to return their inventory (270,000 units), but last night they decided to sell them all, and most are now gone.

This morning, they were saying as many at 4 million units were sold. Crazy.

thanks,
bruce


#35

Quote:
This morning, they were saying as many at 4 million units were sold. Crazy.

That should make their personal systems group more attractive to a buyer.
#36

I know. I have been trying to grab one since Saturday morning. I tried Best Buy first thing this morning after their change of mind in what to do with their units and they were sold out before the store even opened!

Several stores still have not reduced their prices and MacMall did so late today/tonight. I managed to grab 2 (*MAYBE* won't actually believe it until I see them on my doorstep) but had to call. Their web site was a total disaster, could not handle the load and kept timing out. I was on the phone for 75 minutes but after that the order went through really quickly and I even received a confirmation email.

According to those stores that post inventories there are probably over 50,000 units still out there (minimum at a guess--if that makes any sense) waiting for stores to follow the trend and drop their prices.

There have been several interesting articles on how this will effect tablet prices down the road. It is obvious from this that people really do want the things but are not willing to buy in at $500+. Anyway, lots of comments in the press about the future.

I myself would probably have just let the whole thing pass except that my wife just got a Palm Pixi Plus and I was *VERY* impressed with the simplicity and the apparent stability of the OS compared to the Android units I have played with. When the Touchpad came down to 99/149 my thought was: "wouldn't a Pixi with a large screen be great" and I went hunting.

I have to say that I am really disappointed in the way this was handled and I feel that WebOS is too good a system to just get thrown away. here's hoping that it is resurrected by some other party. Of course, if it does not get resurrected, this won't be the first time that the better technology loses out--anyone remember the old Shark 2.5", 250MB removable drive? Way better than anything Iomega had back then but it lost out.

Cheers,

-Marwan

#37

I think it's unfortunate how they have handled the whole thing.

I don't think the Touchpad was overprized. Apple reportedly sells the iPad with a tight margin, and one just needs to look at the prices of the competitors.

So, what's wrong? Probably they should have kept up development and waited for one year more before releasing a product. They should have released a great product, but seems they released something immature.

Unfortunately, nowadays executives think short-term instead of adopting a long term strategic approach.

Sad, because WebOS had the potential to bring some real competition to the market.

I use Mac OS X (Unix user 30 years ago), and really find Apple products outstanding. But of course I don't like the current situation, with a leader and lame competitors behind.

With WebOS I truly thought that a bit of the old HP could come to life again. Pity I was wrong.

#38

One thing HP could have done, long before trying to see if the market will like a tablet w/o apps (duh!), is sell the TouchPad at these prices to developers (or give them away for free).

10,000 devices would have produced 50,000 apps, some very swiftly, and, voila, there would have been apps! (A very small investment to get apps, if you're 2 years late in the game!)

I signed up as developer and intended to port my RPL calc to the TouchPad. With a user base of 4 mio users, I might still do this now... Waiting for discounts to become active in Europe. (Here they still want your 400 euros, in another apparent misunderstanding about the relative value of USD vs. EUR.)

For a small developer (and most are; if you look at the average income of iOS apps) the price you pay for the HW makes a difference whether you will develop on that platform, or not.


Edited: 22 Aug 2011, 4:40 a.m.


#39

The 16GB model went for 99 Euro, and currently http://h20386.www2.hp.com/GermanyStore gives: The service is unavailable. Server is too busy.

#40

I've placed 3 orders from places that claim they are in stock, so hopefully I'll get at least one. If I get all 3, my mother and sister will be getting gifts!

Perhaps they discounted them a little *too* much.

Eric

#41

"Shoppers respond strongly to Hewlett-Packard's decision to dump inventory of the iPad-like device."


Story

Edited: 22 Aug 2011, 5:27 p.m.


#42

More sad news:

http://www.ubergizmo.com/2011/08/webos-will-not-be-licensed/

webOS will not be licensed

HP has stepped forward to lay the smack down on its webOS operating system, saying that they will not license it – at all, making it stone dead, and for good.


#43

Now I found something different. Maybe the other article was wrong.

http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/Content.aspx?id=151281

NEW YORK — Hewlett-Packard plans to keep supporting and updating the WebOS software it acquired in last year’s $1,2bn purchase of Palm, senior vice-president Stephen DeWitt has said.

"The WebOS is not dead," Mr DeWitt, who took charge of WebOS last month, said on Friday. "We’re going to continue to evolve it, update and support it. We stand by it," he said.


#44

How interesting. Good news, *REALLY* good news if true.


#45

Quote:
How interesting. Good news, *REALLY* good news if true.

Well, there are a whole lot of WEb OS users out there now.


#46

Maybe. Half the purchases seem to have ended up on eBay and Craigs List where sellers are getting $200+ over what they paid. They are selling though so it seems that they will get into users' hands.

#47

I suspect that retailers are going to be royally *PISSED* with HP. This has caused a real problem for them with web sites crashing and phone lines swamped. Insight closed down shop 5 or so hours early today (after 3:00 PM their phone system was reporting that they were closed for the day--they are supposed to be open 8-8).

Interestingly you can't tell if they (Insight) have any units left or not. Earlier in the day they were reporting nearly 7K units and then shortly after they shut down their phone lines the listing(s) dropped off their page *EXCEPT* if you had saved a link to the actual item page. In that case you can still get to the page and order (at full price) and stock is still high although it shows that it is going down slowly. I would love to know what is going on.

Anyway, I would bet that there are a lot of really angry retailers out there. This was as badly thought out as it could possibly have been. Unless... This is some sort of super clever trick to really boost sales of the Touchpad and kill sales of competing units for at least a short period of time. People did not want to pay $500 for a tablet before this happened... Now even fewer will cough up the bucks as a number of Touchpad stories on the web are suggesting that this will force other manufacturers to reassess what their units are really worth.

Cheers,

Marwan.


#48

Yeah, I'm seeing the same thing... *chuckle*

MacMall, who is also OnSale.com and PCMall, also crashed multiple times. Plus, their inventory system freaked out and incorrectly showed amounts. So many were dead that MacMall said they were going to cancel ALL orders. The interwebs were royally pissed off at MacMall all day today, and they were vocal about it, completely trashing the vendor in their reputation forums.

The Insight.com thing you mentioned was also a case where their inventory couldn't keep up. No matter how many units were sold, they still showed 7,000 in inventory. They WAY oversold the unit.

Staples almost completely went off the intermap yesterday with that insane $49 price tag, but I imagine they got rid of every unit.

Amazon ran two Lightening Sales today. One last 20 minutes, the other one was apparently only FOUR minutes long before it sold out.

Newegg.com refused to match the HP price drop at all, which incensed a bunch of the interwebs, who promptly launched a DDoS attack and brought down their site. Now Newegg is at odds with every other vendor out there, flatly refusing to honor the price drop.

Walmart says you have to SHOW them an ad with the reduced price (stupid).

it's crazy out there. Slickdeals.com has been the only reputable source of truth about where to get them, and there are more than 9,000 posts on their forums about this topic.

Again, crazy.

:-)

Edited: 22 Aug 2011, 10:23 p.m.


#49

I talked to Insight reps twice today and on both occasions I was told that they were still awaiting a decision from on high on pricing. So it sounds like they were out of sync at all levels.

B&N way oversold as well and was getting trashed last I saw. People saying that they kept the item up so as to gather personal info for their Nook marketing effort. Who knows if it's true but does not look good for them.

Best Buy did a reverse face and maybe reversed again with some stores saying that most of their units are going to be returned to HP. And HP says that they are *TEMPORARILY* out of stock. So maybe still some out there to be had.

People buying multiple items now have dozens on eBay for a $150 profit.

The whole thing was badly handled at all levels and will leave a sour taste in people mouths for some time to come I fear.

#50

Hi all,

Touch Pad 16Go if fire saled in Europe for 99 Euros (1Euro= $1.4)

Always the same kind of pricing :(

but already impossible to find.

Patrice


#51

I haven't tried it by phone, allthough in hindsight that might have been the only chance to get one of the webOS devices in Germany.

Right now I see a lot of devices on TGAS, and people are bidding up to 270 Euro (about $380) for a 16GB tablet.

#52

Quote:
HP should have sold the Touchpad at the reduced prices to gain a foothold in Apple's territory.

I fully agree with you and I was surprised by the way HP managed this Touchpad launch. One of the reason for the success of the iPad, besides ease of use, is the high number of application available for this platform. If you want to come into the tablet game as a challenger, you must address this issue first. Having a good hardware and OS is not enough to gain success (see Next, BeOS). There is no need to have a MBA from Harvard to figure this out and I don't understand how could HP overlook this...

... or could it be that all this was just a clever marketing buzz, created in purpose in order to get everyone's attention and to develop a solid WebOs user base ? (just dreaming ...)

Edited: 24 Aug 2011, 8:37 p.m.


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