Want a business tablet on the cheap? It's hard to get much more affordable than HP's new Android tablet. The HP 7 Plus is a 7-inch business slate that's priced for the serious cheapskate: just $99. The device packs decent hardware for the cost, but you'll have to make some definite sacrifices. Still, it's worth a look for budget-minded business users who don't want to pay for anything more than the basics.
The tablet's quad-core processor ought to get the job done well enough for business users with the most-basic computing needs. Don't expect snappy multitasking, but the HP 7 Plus should deliver reasonable performance for browsing the Web, checking email and other everyday productivity tasks. You won't find quad-core processing for much cheaper than this.
The slate's low-resolution, 1024 x 600-pixel display won't impress, either, nor will the 2,800 mAh battery that's rated for five hours of life. This tablet does offer a few hardware highlights, however, including 8GB of memory and a microSD card slot for expandable storage, a feature that budget-priced devices don't always include. That's good news for business users who want to download and store large files on their tablets.
HP also touts a few software perks for business users, including the free 25GB of cloud storage courtesy of Box, which is available for as long as you use the tablet. Meanwhile, the slate's preloaded apps include HP ePrint, which can help you send a document wirelessly to your printer with a few taps.
For business users who want a bit more performance, a sharper display and better battery life, there are good alternatives to the HP 7 Plus — if you're willing to pay for them. Google's $239 Nexus 7 is one of the best-performing 7-inch tablets around, and Amazon's Kindle Fire HDX features an eye-popping display and great battery life, for $199.