Best Buy has announced that starting tomorrow both in-store and online, the retailer will once again sell 32GB HP TouchPad tablets for $149.99, with the catch being that an HP/Compaq desktop or laptop must be purchased at the same time. The bundling is ostensibly to avoid overselling the unexpectedly popular tablets following the firesale this past Summer as a result of the elimination of the webOS hardware division, with the fate of the software division to be decided within the next two months.
HP previously confirmed that it would manufacture and sell one last run of tablets in order to mend relationships with suppliers, as the sudden discontinuation of webOS hardware came as a shock to parts manufacturers which threatened to leave them with millions of dollars in useless inventory. This was also done to satisfy the hundreds of people that were left out of the initial fire sale as a consequence of the overestimation of stock, which led to oversold inventory and angry customers, mostly those that ordered through HP’s own site or through third-party authorized resellers such as Barnes & Noble.
The last wave of tablets is currently being sold through third-parties, though those sellers are typically marking up the tablets by $100 to $249.99 in order to take advantage of the pent-up demand for the tablet and is also acting as the new de facto MSRP for the TouchPad, should webOS be spared and left within HP.