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Hey HP When You Have to Shoot...Shoot! Don't Talk




Apple really has nothing to do with the problems firms like RIM and HP face. I wrote a month ago that the move to the Cloud would result in major vendor extinction. While HP is building Next Generation Data Centers for some large enterprises, I’ve found it difficult to accept HP as an enterprise software company, a storage company, a networking company, or anything but a printer company. Granted the company has made some acquisitions over the years notably Compaq, Mercury, EDS, yet for each of these product lines I have tried really hard to see where HP has in any way added value to the business. Beyond placing the HP logo on the product these captured firms ship, I see HP as having done more harm than good. For example after acquiring Mercury, HP has essentially frozen research and development to the point where an entirely new generation of competitors has grown out of HP’s overarching need to milk as much cash as possible from that acquisition. Similarly, the server lines still use the same naming convention as that used by Compaq. I remember the Compaq server DL line from as far back as 2000. And I get the sense that HP relies more on its incumbent status as an enterprise vendor than it does on innovation, competitive products, or customer service. When I read that HP had purchased Palm and was going to market with a tablet based on “WebOS” I laughed aloud at the tunnel vision, reinforcing internal culture, and at the idea that after Palm had completely failed to thrive after the 3Com acquisition, that HP could or would piece together anything more elegant than a Frankenstein monster by combing some HP hardware and a WebOS. Who is supposed to use such a device when people are buying and bringing to work their own iPhone and Galaxy Tabs and iPads and corporate IT is saying Yes? The consumers who HP cited as one its core competitive advantages was more of a prisoner.  HP has no relationship with consumers other than to sell them expensive ink and toner cartridges. Nobody ever cared about HP PCs or would seek an HP brand product other than a printer. I’ve made rash predictions that HP will be one of the first casualties of the Cloud and I’m fascinated at just how large of a gaping hole and husky enterprise HP has just revealed.


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More Stories By Brian McCallion

Brian McCallion Bronze Drum works with executives to develop Cloud Strategy, Big Data proof-of-concepts, and trains enterprise teams to rethink process and operations. Focus areas include: Enterprise Cloud Strategy and Project Management Cloud Data Governance and Compliance Infrastructure Automation

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