HP Slate is a collaboration between Microsoft and HP alright for the HP Slate, albeit only for the OS and technology. However, other than that, HP will take the OS collaboration one step ahead for laptops and PCs, by setting the default search engine on browsers to Bing and the default homepage to MSN.com.
This would not have been possible without a solid contract between both HP and Microsoft. So starting now, every HP PC or laptop/netbook sold in 2010, and in the future (till the contract lasts) will have this as the default configuration, in 32 countries that is.
One thing is for sure, this deal will give Bing a bigger market share and MSN.com more hits. However, this may only be true for IE8. The European union has already set a verdict on allowing choices for the browser one can install on a PC, so this applies to PCs sold by HP in the EU.
Will this create an issue with the Antitrust? Of course it may, there must be some sort of choice available to users to choose the default search engine, the home page on the other hand is fine, but yes expect some fireworks to come out of this by Google at-least.