Reporting Terri Lee Sylvester
SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) - It felt like Black Friday, because the deal was just that amazing.
An HP TouchPad was selling for $99. And the discontinued tablet had many Metro Detroiters flocking to the Best Buy in Southfield hoping to score big.
And many eager customers were waiting in a snaking line Sunday for the deal.
Yolanda Smith of Southfield was pretty happy to get in on the deal.
“I only stopped at this Best Buy because I heard the report on WWJ Newsradio 950, about the HP’s going on sale for $99, and I just want to say ‘thank you’ and I got one, and I’m happy,” said Smith.
Leon Leduff came all the way from Pontiac.
“I heard it on the news just a little while ago, and it’s my daughter’s birthday, and so, she is into it, I’m not, but I called and she said, yeah, get in line … so I’m in line,” said Leduff with a laugh.
WWJ spoke with multi-channel sales Assistant Jermaine Jones at the Southfield Best Buy. He said the HP TouchPads sold out within 10 minutes of the store opening on Sunday.
HP announced last week that it was planning to sell or spin off its Personal Systems Group, which markets PCs and mobile devices. HP also said it would immediately stop development of the TouchPad, just a little over a month after the first models went on sale. The company also is discontinuing development and sale of its smartphones.
Best Buy and some other retailers promptly put their remaining stocks of TouchPads on sale at a deep discuont – according to published reports, at $99 for the 16GB WiFi model, which originally sold for $399, and $150 for the 32GB WiFi version, which originally sold for $499.
The TouchPad went on sale in early July to mixed reviews for its bulkiness, slow performance and lack of available software. In just a month, HP apparently determined it couldn’t effectively compete with Apple’s iPad and other manufacturers’ Google Android-powered devices.
In Southfield, while many who waited were able to get their tablets, some were not as fortunate.
Spencer Abbott of Birmingham said he was not too disappointed, “Because I actually wanted to get an Android tablet, and I just figured $100 for any tablet was too good to pass up.”