Android is everywhere, from smartphones to tablets to smartwatches to in-car entertainment units, but for some reason it’s never quite taken off on one of the oldest form factors in the business: the laptop. While Android laptops exist in hybrid form, either as a secondary add-on to a tablet or emulated through Windows, HP is set to launch what appears to be the first natively-powered Android laptop.
The HP Slate 14 sports a 14-inch touchscreen powered by a Tegra processor of unknown speed, though it’s likely the aging Tegra 4 rather than the unreleased Tegra K1.
The keyboard itself looks to be similar to what the company offers on many of its other low-end laptops, but that it is running Android is interesting: the OS has always been friendly to other forms of input, including a mouse and keyboard, and we’ve seen Android work well with a touchpad before in models like the Asus Transformer.
HP is trying to take advantage of the fact that there are enough apps good enough to re-create a true Windows-like experience at what is likely a fraction of the cost, but we won’t know the exact pricing until the company launches the Slate 14. Also of note is that HP already make Chromebooks, so this will be yet another example of an OEM moving its laptop product line away from Windows, which still costs a lot in licensing fees.