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It seems like only yesterday that HP announced it would shutter its mobile hardware division and discontinue webOS products like the barely launched TouchPad tablet. Actually it happened two days ago (August 18). But HP isn't wasting any time in liquidating the remaining HP TouchPad units.
On Friday, PreCentral reported that HP ordered deep price cuts on TouchPad units sold at major Canadian retail outlets. Effective on Saturday, the tablet's 16GB version was slashed from $399 down to a stunning $99; and the 32GB version will now sell for $149, down from $499. Canucks can pick up these super cheap tablets at Best Buy, Future Shop, The Source, London Drugs, and Staples, writes the Washington Post.
Americans will have to plan a road trip or visit the Canadian version of these sites, as it appears that some U.S. retail chains have stopped selling the TouchPad already.
For example, Best Buy customers who search for an HP TouchPad on the store's website will find the following announcement in place of the tablets:
This will take you to a page explaining that the Best Buy U.S. return/exchange policy for the device has extended from 14 to 60 days--just in case early TouchPad adopters are having second thoughts about their purchase. If reported sales figures are any indication, however, there won't be many of these returns. All Things D stated on August 16 that "[a]ccording to one source who has seen internal HP reports, Best Buy has taken delivery of 270,000 TouchPads and has so far managed to sell only 25,000, or less than 10 percent of the units in its inventory."
As for Best Buy's price match policy for cheaper units found at other stores, Best Buy's page reads thus: "As of August 19, 2011, the HP TouchPad is on clearance and we will no longer be selling the units so we will not offer any price matches."
Meanwhile, searching Best Buy Canada for a TouchPad returns the following page:
Try to purchase these devices, however, and you're met with an out-of-stock error. It's unlikely that the store will get any new shipments of these devices, as the sale is set to end on August 22.
Staples's U.S. site hasn't yet taken down its product page for the TouchPad, where the device is still listed at HP's previous discount price of $399 (16GB) or $499 (32 GB). Although, a visit to the "Details" page for each of these models reveals that both are out of stock.
Staples's Canada site does indeed feature the discount on TouchPad units, but they're out of stock, too.
Read on to find out why HP chose to shutter its hardware business. Then, check out our slideshow of other devices HP killed in the overhaul of its business (here).
UPDATE: Best Buy U.S. began selling the discounted tablets, as of Sunday, August 21.
However, BestBuy.com said that the TouchPads were currently "sold out online" on Sunday evening.
HP will credit early adopters by offering to refund the difference in price between the original cost of the TouchPad and the new discount, according to webOSroundup.