HP Inc. Looks to Grow in Challenging PC Market

By Jeffrey Burt  |  Posted 2016-02-26 Print this article Print

Microsoft officials have said that Windows 10 is in 200 million systems, and Gartner analysts have said that while the OS has yet to drive significant PC sales, Windows 10 adoption in the enterprise will happen faster than it did for Windows 7 six years ago. Fifty percent of enterprises will have started deploying the OS by January 2017, they said in November 2015. Driving the demand is the end of support for Windows 7, which will happen in 2020, compatibility with Windows 7 applications and devices, and growing demand for such form factors as tablets and two-in-one systems, they said.

While the contracting global PC market has been difficult for all players in the industry, HP has particular challenges, according to Bob O'Donnell, principle analyst with TECHnalysis Research.

"HP is more exposed to the consumer PC business, which has been harder hit" than the commercial PC industry, O'Donnell told eWEEK. "The lower end of the consumer PC business, which is part of their DNA, is really getting crushed."

However, Weisler and Lesjak said during the call that the company would continue to grow its capabilities in commercial and higher-end PCs, moves that would make sense, O'Donnell said.

He also noted that there is a "fast-moving attitude" at HP and that company officials have shown a willingness to invest in innovation. The work the company has done with the Sprout PC is an example, and O'Donnell also pointed to the Elite x3 smartphone introduced this week. The stand-alone smartphone runs Windows 10 Mobile and can be combined with docking modules to create a form factor that is ultra-mobile and powerful enough to be considered an alternative to notebook and desktop PCs. The company also is developing systems in such increasingly popular form factors as two-in-ones.

Strategically, HP seems to be making the right moves, O'Donnell said. It's just difficult to predict how such innovations will do in the market.



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