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Engadget is carrying a rumor that HP wants back into the smartphone market, and thinks that releasing a line of cheap 6-or-7-inch phone-capable Android tablets with recycled designs from OEMs such as Pegatron and Quanta might be its way back in. Reportedly these sub-$250 tablets are just a few weeks away.

Of course, we all remember HP’s last big shot at the smartphone/tablet market, in which it took Palm, a once-respected mobile brand with a 19-year history, and flushed it right down the toilet. (Though the event did show that people wanted sub-$100 tablets enough to buy discontinued, unsupported ones—a demand that has only lately begun to be fulfilled.)

WebOS still has its fans to this day who wish HP had done or would do more with it, but given that it’s largely an Android and iOS world now, it doesn’t exactly seem likely. And given the saturation of the market, for even an established company to break into the smartphone arena might take a minor miracle.

 
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