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Leaked webOS tablets are the Opal and Topaz of HP’s eyes

Well this is certainly a surprise. Even though HP has been extremely tight-lipped about its ongoing project for a webOS tablet, it seems that even the company does not have the power to stop leaks such as these from making their way around cyberspace. And this latest leak unearthed by Engadget reveals some juicy details about HP’s two webOS-powered tablets. Yep, you read that right: two tablets. Welcome to the competition, gorgeous.

For months, HP has been claiming to customers and shareholders that plans for a webOS tablet are not merely just big words being tossed around to drum up excitement for a project that would eventually fail to meet the light of the day. While that may have been their original plan, the fact that the company has chosen to keep a tight lid on its development process and plans have all but caused many to lose interest in what is yet another tablet making its entry to a market that id rapidly being crowded up my countless entries from the likes of competing OEMs.

That being said, it appears that those who have written HP’s webOS tablet off as a worthy competitor to the iPad should have had a little more faith in the company/ And with these leaked renders of the elusive webOS tablet finally showing up in cyberspace, it seems that HP has not lost it after all; its tablets definitely look good enough to go head to head with Apple’s upcoming iPad 2 slate PC.

Looking at the renders reveal some rather interesting information about HP’s upcoming webOS-powered tablets. To begin with, it appears that HP has opted to go with a buttonless design. Logically, this would mean that the tablet and its OS are to be operated exclusively via touch and gesture inputs. In addition, there appears to be something that resembles speaker grilles at the left side of the device, while the tiny hole present directly below the top panel bears some semblance to a microUSB port.

But that’s not all. Remember what we said earlier about HP meeting the market headon with not one but two webOS-powered tablets? Well, Engadget has obtained some insider information which reveals that there are nine-inch and seven-inch variants of the above render. The nine-inch version is known as the HP Topaz, while the seven-inch variant currently goes by the code name of Opal. And apparently, both devices will be targeted at different consumers: little information has been made available about the Topaz’s intended audience, but a leaked business slide reveals that HP plans to position the seven-inch Opal as a portable multimedia device with an emphasis on e-reading. Or at least, that is what HP has in mind at this point of time.

Unfortunately, that was all the information we were able to find regarding HP’s soon-to-be-released webOS tablets. That means that other key details such as the processing hardware used, along with the release dates and expected retail prices are still a profound mystery to us. And until more concrete evidence can be obtained, anything else related to the aforementioned details are entirely up for speculation. That being said, if looks mean everything, then suffice to say Apple is going to be in for some interesting competition as we move on through 2011.

Source and images: Engadget

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