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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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Touch is Overrated
By jah1subs on 9/20/2012 10:30:41 PM , Rating: 2
Touch is overrated. I know many people who do not have good fine motor scales and prefer not to depend upon them if possible. This is true at all ages, but gets worse somewhere in the 30s or 40s and never gets better.

The ergonomics of frequently having to reach horizontally to a touch display are simply awful. Doing it once in a while is doable, but frequently, no. I believe that frequent users will have a new syndrome to go with carpal tunnel syndrome.

I am typing this message on a full sized keyboard with a USB port plugged in to a USB hub plugged into a laptop with a 15.6" 1280x800 display. The width from the outside of the Ctrl key on the left hand side of the USB keyboard to the outside of the Ctrl key on the right hand side is 11 inches and is comfortable. The laptop keyboard is actually a fraction of an inch wider. It makes me believe that this is probably a major reason that the 15.6" laptop size is so popular in the consumer market.

This tells me simply that any device with less than a 13.3" or 14" widescreen display, which is all tablets on the market, is more of a mobile toy than a device for hard work.




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