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Jon Rubinstein, senior vice president and general manager for Palm, holds the Palm TouchPad during a media presentation at the Herbst Pavilion at the Fort Mason Center in San Francisco February 9, 2011.

BECK DIEFENBACH/REUTERS

Hewlett-Packard Co unveiled its entrant in the tablet race, announcing a touchscreen device called the TouchPad to try to steal some momentum from Apple's popular iPad.

The 9.7-inch tablet runs on the webOS mobile operating system, which HP acquired last summer in its $1.2-billion purchase of handheld device pioneer Palm. Pricing and other details will be announced later.

The world's largest technology company by revenue also announced new webOS smartphones, the "Veer" and the "Pre3."

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WebOS is widely viewed as a strong platform, but HP faces an uphill battle to gain traction in the mobile market. Its products are arriving late to a market already crawling with competition from Apple and devices based on Google's Android.

Shares of Palo Alto, California-based HP were up 0.7 per cent at $48.49 in afternoon trading on the Nasdaq.

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