Chief executive officer of Hewlett-Packard admitted on Wednesday that it needs smartphones to offer a contemporary product portfolio to its customers. However, the company does not have any plans to release a smartphone in 2013, which questions the fact whether the company has a proper mobile strategy at all.
"We do not have any plans to introduce a smartphone in 2013, but we have got to start thinking about what is our unique play, how do we capture this element of the personal computing market," said Meg Whitman, CEO of HP, in an interview with Fox Business Network, reports IDG News Service.
HP clearly understands that it has to offer every kind of devices to be successful, that means, smartphones, tablets, laptops, hybrids, all-in-one PCs, desktops, workstations, servers and whatever it might be. Today, one good device is just not enough for success, companies have to offer competitive spectrums of products that work in collaboratively.
"I believe that five years from now, if we do not have a smartphone or whatever the next generation of that device is, we'll be locked out of a huge segment of the population in many countries of the world," said Ms. Whitman.
The obvious problem with smartphones for HP is the fact that the company has not made any decisions concerning which platform/operating system to choose. Palm's webOS that HP used to own could not compete with Apple iOS or Google Android, which is why the company passed it to open-source community. Today, it does not look like the webOS has progressed enough to be used on commercial products, which means that HP has to rely on Google Android or Microsoft Windows Phone. For Hewlett-Packard the latter option could be preferable as all of its PCs are running Windows. The big obstacle is that Windows Phone 8 is not a popular platform for smartphones and HP does not have proper channels to sell smartphones powered by mediocre OS.
Without a smartphone, HP's portfolio of mobile products is just not complete, it cannot offer its business customers a vertically-integrated solution that could server their mobile needs here and now. Thus, the company has to start re-developing its mobile strategy and pick up the right operating system for the right smartphone.