Walmart is doubling down on private-label tech and selling its own tablets

JIM WATSON / Getty ImagesWalmart isn’t the first retailer to make its own iPad rival.
  • Walmart is developing its own tablet.
  • Amazon and Barnes & Noble previously unleashed cheaper alternatives to Apple’s iPad.
  • The news marks Walmart‘s heightened focus on producing low-cost tech products.

Walmart is jumping into the tablet business, and it’s yet another signal that the retail giant is getting serious about tech products.

Bloomberg was first to report that the upcoming product would be “inexpensive,” “kid-friendly,” and powered by Google’s Android OS.

“I can only confirm we are working on a private brand tablet,” a Walmart spokesperson said in a statement to Business Insider.

The Federal Communications Commission’s wireless device applications database listed Chunghsin Technology Group Co., a Chinese tech company, as the product’s manufacturer. Chunghsin’s website said that the firm employs 9,999 people and lists Sceptre as its cooperative buyer in the US.

Read more: Walmart has gobbled up a slew of brands since 2010 – and it’s all part of a strategy to take on Amazon and win over millennials

According to Import Genius, Chunghsin imports its products to the tech company Sceptre through the port of Long Beach, California. On Walmart’s website, Sceptre products include TVs, soundbars, and Bluetooth speakers. But this new tablet will be listed under Walmart’s Onn brand, according to Bloomberg.

Currently, Walmart shoppers can purchase Onn products like headphones, TV monitors, soundbars, and cables.

Walmart isn’t the first retailer to unveil an alternative to Apple’s iPad. Amazon came out with the Kindle Fire in 2011. Barnes & Noble’s Nook e-reader dates back to 2009, and the bookstore chain introduced a Nook-branded tablet in 2016.

But this move likely signals that the Bentonville-based retailer has its eyes on the tech business, especially given that news of the tablet follows Walmart’s 2018 launch of a line of gaming PCs and laptops.

If you work at Walmart and have a story to share, contact this reporter at [email protected]

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