As worthless as I felt the discontinued HP TouchPad was when it went on sale last month following HP’s announcement that they planned to step out of the hardware game, I must admit that there was a brief moment where I honestly considered whipping out my Visa card and ordering one for myself. After all, at $99 the TouchPad did seem like an excellent deal, giving users to hardware of almost the same stature as the iPad 2. But the more and more that I thought about it, the $99/$149 price points on the TouchPad really weren’t as good as they seemed when one accounted for the fact that the software that it ran was not only being phased out, but also was extremely unlikely to attract the attention of developers down the road.
What did learn from the whole TouchPad hype though? Price sells. People will buy anything if they think they’re getting a good deal on it. Working in retail you would think that this reality would have struck me a long time ago – after all, I see instances where people sacrifice quality for price every day in my line of work – but in all honesty the TouchPad sale prices have been the best example of price-focused sales in recent time. Sure, people are going to tell you how wonderful of a device the TouchPad is; how feature-rich it is, how wonderful WebOS is, how light and slim the device itself is, etc. But even as true as all of this may be, the fact of the matter is that a great many of the people who have TouchPad’s in their hands right now simply would never have bought the device if it wasn’t for the price.