Comparison of the technical specs of the HP TouchPad and the Apple iPad in an infographic

By Enrique Serrano

Earlier this week, we discussed in our article “HP TouchPad Tablet for Lawyers” that the HP TouchPad is an interesting option if you are considering entering into the world of tablet PCs, thanks to its now highly discounted price.

It is obvious that HP’s decision to discontinue the TouchPad tablet means that the battle against its main competitor, Apple’s iPad, is lost. But, how good is the TouchPad compared to the iPad 2? And how competitive is that tablet now that it has such a big price cut? We analyzed the technical specifications of both tablets, and summarized the results in an infographic comparing the HP TouchPad and the Apple iPad. (Affiliate links included)

TouchPad iPad comparison infographic

Some interesting conclusions of this comparison between both tablets are as follows:

  • The size of both tablets is quite similar. The TouchPad is 0.05 inches (1.2mm) shorter than the iPad 2, 0.17 inches (4.3 mm) wider and 0.20 inches (4.9 mm) thicker.
  • Nevertheless, the HP TouchPad is 23% heavier than the iPad 2 (0.30 pounds – 139 g – heavier.) The HP TouchPad would still be heavier than the old iPad 1.
  • According to the technical specifications, the screens of both devices are almost identical. Both the iPad 2 and the HP TouchPad have a 9.7 inches (diagonal) XGA screen (18 bit color) with a resolution of 1024 x 768 pixels. Both displays have a multi-touch input as well.
  • Both devices use Flash memory for storage purposes. The HP TouchPad has only 2 models available, with 16 GB and 32 GB respectively. On the other hand, the Apple iPad 2 has models with 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB.
  • The HP TouchPad and the iPad 2 have dual-core processors. The RAM memory of the TouchPad is 1 GB (twice the amount of available RAM on the iPad 2, 512 MB, which is twice the amount available on the iPad 1, 256 MB.) The 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon APQ8060 of the TouchPad works at a higher clock speed than the 1 GHz Apple A5 processor of the iPad 2. Nevertheless, measuring real performance is not easy.
  • The first Apple iPad had no cameras. The iPad 2 has 2 cameras: a front-facing low-quality VGA camera for videoconferencing purposes, and a HD (720p) back camera. On the other hand, the HP TouchPad has a single, front-facing HD camera with 1.3 megapixels.
  • Both the iPad 2 and the HP TouchPad have WiFi and Bluetooth connections. The Apple iPad has also some versions with GSM mobile connections.
  • According to the manufacturers, the iPad 2 can work up to 10 hours before needing to recharge, while the TouchPad lasts up to 8 hours. That means that the battery of the iPad would last around 2 hours more than the battery of the TouchPad in activities like browsing webpages. But the TouchPad is the only one that would allow browsing websites with Flash components.
  • There are around 300 webOS apps specifically prepared for HP TouchPad. On the other hand, the Apple App Store contains more than 90,000 apps that would run on the iPad. The development of webOS apps has been essentially discontinued, while the App Store keeps growing, so this is a clear iPad advantage.
  • The cheapest HP TouchPads start from a price of $99. Nevertheless, the cheapest iPad 2 starts at $499. That means it would be possible to buy 5 TouchPads for the price of a single iPad 2.

Taking into account this comparison, it seems that both tablets are mostly even in many fields, with some advantages for the iPad 2. When the HP TouchPad was priced the same as the Apple iPad 2, HP lost. But at a highly discounted price, having an HP TouchPad really makes sense.

The main disadvantage of the HP TouchPad is the lack of a big – and growing – app store. But this shouldn’t be a huge problem if you already found apps for your most frequent tasks in the available collection for TouchPad. And things would be much more balanced if the HP TouchPad were able to run Android – as some projects are trying to achieve, like TouchDroid. In fact, tablet manufacturers are rushing to create new cheap Android tablets, due to the success of the discounted TouchPads in the market.

Have you been lucky enough to get a discounted HP TouchPad tablet while the existences last? In your experience, how does this tablet compare to an iPad?