Hewlett-Packard officials later this month reportedly will show that the company can still innovate on the PC side with a system that will not only run Microsoft Windows, but will also include a 3D scanner and a projector.
HP will introduce the system at an event in New York City Oct. 29, according to a report on the Re/Code news site.
Citing unnamed people who have seen the system that has been dubbed Sprout, the report said that the PC will include a large flat-screen display—like the touch-screen panels on HP's Pavilion Touchsmart desktop PCs—and an overhead projector that can show images on the work surface. Users can do such tasks as resize the picture, change colors in it, move objects around and add real-world elements via the 3D scanner.
The system will be aimed primarily at businesses, and while initially it will run Windows, there is the possibility that it will support Google's Chrome OS in the future, according to the report. No price was given. Possible use cases focus on how subjects are presented, such as a decorator demonstrating how a room will look with different paint colors, or a teacher using it in his or her classroom.
According to Re/Code, Sprout will be one of several products introduced during the Oct. 29 event.
HP executives in early October said that over the next 12 months, the tech giant will break into two smaller companies—Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, which will sell solutions and services around such products as servers, networking and storage, and HP Inc., which will focus on PCs and printers. Executives hope that the decision to cut HP in two will result in smaller, more nimble and more focused companies.
The move comes at a time when the global PC market—which for three years had seen sales decline in the wake of the popularity of tablets, causing turmoil for such vendors as HP and Dell—appears to be stabilizing. During their company's third-quarter earnings call this month, Intel executives said the commercial PC space continues to expand, due in part to Microsoft's decision in April to end support for Windows XP, businesses refreshing their aging PCs and new form factors, such as two-in-one systems.
In addition, tablet sales are slowing as the devices hit the saturation point in the market, and mature markets like North America and Western Europe are seeing strong PC sales. All that is good news for HP, which is the world's second-largest PC vendor, behind Lenovo.