Tesco tipped to unveil budget tablet device

Oliver Smith
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TESCO, the UK’s largest grocer, is expected to unveil a tablet next Monday – its first foray into the consumer electronics space – which could be aimed at cementing customer loyalty as the retail giant moves sales online.

The device is expected to be a 16GB tablet device with a seven inch screen. It is thought the so-called Hudl tablet could push existing Tesco products including streaming service Blinkbox and online food shopping.

The retailer trademarked the Hudl name back in February for use on a tablet computer, but has so far remained tight-lipped about the specifications of the new device.

Tesco has organised an event on Monday that has the trappings of a modern technology launch – the invite is sparse on details but tells guests: “We’ve got something to show you. #LetsHudl.” Reports suggest the tablet will retail for less than £100.

“The key issue for Tesco is how they maintain customer relationships as more and more retail goes online, certainly they want to leverage clubcard and Tesco accounts in all sorts of ways to create customer loyalty,” said Benedict Evans, analyst at Enders Analysis.

“At the moment the vast majority of the decision of which supermarket you use is just based on convenience.”

Meanwhile, Tesco yesterday appointed Barclays as its joint corporate broker alongside Deutsche Bank, having split with long-term advisers Nomura and JP Morgan Cazenove.

The retailer said it is “good practice and in common with other listed companies” to review advisory service providers.

The change in advisers comes as Tesco is trying to dust itself off from a bruising encounter in its overseas markets. The company last week revealed that it was selling loss-making American operations, Fresh & Easy.