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HP is determined to succeed in the tablet market

"It's just wrong."

That's what Hewlett-Packard Comp. (HPQ) executive vice president of HP’s printing and personal systems group Todd Bradley said about claims of the "post-PC" era, in a new PC World interview.  Mr. Bradley knows a thing or two about computers -- his division is responsible for consumer personal computer design at the world's largest personal computer maker.

The term "post-PC" is a popular one in some media and analyst circles to describe the hypothesis that consumers will abandon traditional desktops and laptops for smartphones and tablets.  Some would argue even if customers don't wholly abandon their legacy devices that canibalization by the newer device types is proof we're heading towards a post-PC era.

One of the top proponents of the term is Ray Ozzie, former chief technical officer and chief software architect at Microsoft Corp. (MSFT).

But others like Mr. Bradley take issue with the term, arguing the PC is not dying, but evolving.  He comments, "Just think of the decision when your child is going off to college. What’s a requirement? A PC. Or you run a business and need your employees to be productive. You need a PC. The size of the global PC business is huge, and I think some people are trying to be dramatic. That said, there is a growing role for tablets, and we will absolutely be a significant force in that space."

Tom Bradley
Todd Bradley, HP EVP [Image Source: HP]

He claims this evolution has been going on for some time.  For example, while he's excited about touch in Windows 8, he argues HP has been pushing in that direction for some time now, commenting,  "We pioneered the touch many years ago built on top of a Microsoft system. HP has a long tradition of innovating in touch interfaces, and it’s great to have Microsoft agree and support us.  Whether it’s a touch interface you use occasionally on a notebook or desktop, or something you use all the time with tablets, we think customers will really be excited."

Asked if he was concerned about Microsoft's Surface tablet, he confidently remarks, "The market for tablets is huge. And customers really win when there are lots of choices."

He points to the Envy x2 hybrid Ultrabook (tablet/notebook) as one gleaning example of an HP mobile star, commenting, "This market is still young, and we will be a significant player."

HP Envy x2
HP Envy x2 hybrid Ultrabook [Image Source: HP]

HP, like Taiwan's Acer Inc. (TPE:2353), is pushing Windows 8 product rather than Microsoft's ARM analogue, Windows RT.  Mr. Bradley argues that the ARM applications space in Windows 8 is too immature, commenting, "We see x86 chips delivering one of the best experiences in the short term and near future. We will continue to develop with our partners in the ARM ecosystem. We think that work is very important. But our first tablets will be based on the x86 architecture."

On a final note, for the lingering fans of the near-defunct webOS, Mr. Bradley does provide a bit of an update.

He comments, "HP is executing its plan to deliver an open webOS under a new organization called Gram.  HP will make webOS source code available under the Apache License, Version 2.0, and we expect the full source code for open webOS to be available by September." 

But webOS is now mostly a humbling chapter in HP's history.  Windows 8 is its future.  And HP has big hopes for the Microsoft touch era.

Source: PC World

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Just ignorance
By Beenthere on 9/20/2012 2:30:32 PM , Rating: 2
It's pure ignorance to even suggest we are in a post PC era. Somebody is out of touch with reality.

RE: Just ignorance
By Mitch101 on 9/20/2012 2:41:07 PM , Rating: 2
I agree on the desktop.

I do think tablets like the x86 one coming from Microsoft will blur the line between ultra book and tablet. Its a tablet and a smaller screen ultra book on the go. Then you can plug the external HDMI out to a large monitor and use a Bluetooth keyboard/mouse and use it like a desktop.

RE: Just ignorance
By Motoman on 9/20/2012 2:51:11 PM , Rating: 3
...which is to say, you turn it into an actual computer when you actually need to do something.

And that's not new...the Transformer line is cool, as is that HP thing above, that dock into a real laptop keyboard/trackpad/DVD drive unit. And as far as that goes, for like $15 you can get a faux-leather folder for your tablet that has a USB keyboard built into it, and turn pretty much any tablet into a laptop. For $15.

Tablets aren't "taking over" anything though when you think about it. What people are doing are either buying docakable tablets that can be tablety and do actual work, or they're buying tables and then the necesary accessories to turn them into laptops when they need to do actual work.

RE: Just ignorance
By Mitch101 on 9/20/2012 3:01:28 PM , Rating: 2
A tablet that runs a full blown OS that I can dock and use with a full size screen or as a second screen, has USB 3.0 ports, Memory slot, and supports a Bluetooth keyboard mouse combo might replace my laptop.

It wont take over my desktop yet but might take over as my laptop.

The average user who just does e-mail, compose a document, and balance the checkbook it might.

RE: Just ignorance
By NellyFromMA on 9/20/2012 4:44:59 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah. there are definitely tons of people who I know and wouldn't consider 'tech saavy' but use PCs/Laptops on a regular basis for light everyday internet use. Certainly some of these people just won't need a PC-like device, just something to consume some content. The real issue becomes ergonomics I think (as nerdy as that sounds...)

It's not comfortable to use a tablet or phone for extended periods of time, even propped up. That's when the peripherals really come in handy.

The surface will be an intriguing device to get hands-on with; it's about the only device that has come out and tried to actualy not be a total chore to use.

We'll see how it plays out in the next 2-5 years.

RE: Just ignorance
By StevoLincolnite on 9/20/2012 3:16:32 PM , Rating: 2
It's pure ignorance to even suggest we are in a post PC era. Somebody is out of touch with reality.

I think what people mean by "Post PC" is more Post-Desktop world.

The term "PC" afterall means a "Personal Computer" hence even the Apple iPhone falls into that category.

What annoys me is how allot of these people think that Tablets and Smartphones will go on to take over all our facets of computing; which not only is not true but completely impossible at this stage.
For starters the Tablet is a content consuming device not a device where you create content, allot of analyst seem to forget this.
It's not like you will buy a tablet play a game of Crysis, encode some 1080P movies, do some photoshop work, run some demanding databases etc'.

Plus, don't get me started on how the PC landscape has still seen increases Year on Year in sales... Despite software and games remaining relatively stagnant in terms of hardware requirements for the last half decade.

Most households would even have multiple PC's by now that will handle everything they want at this stage with flying colours anyway.

RE: Just ignorance
By NellyFromMA on 9/20/2012 4:46:34 PM , Rating: 2
We live in a world where it's simply not enough to be large and sustainable; you have to GROW to be considered successful.

That's always kind of astounded me actually...

RE: Just ignorance
By augiem on 9/20/2012 5:07:13 PM , Rating: 3
Yeah, just like we're in the post-paper era because of computers.

"My sex life is pretty good" -- Steve Jobs' random musings during the 2010 D8 conference

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