HPs Fiorina Plays to Consumers

UPDATE: Hewlett-Packard's CEO hosted the rollout of 158 new consumer products, from printers to digital cameras to computers.

NEW YORK—Hewlett-Packard Co. officials earlier this year told enterprises to demand more. Now theyre telling consumers to enjoy more.

HP on Monday rolled out 158 new consumer products, from printers to digital cameras to computers, in what Chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina called the largest product launch in company history.

"We are introducing today almost as many products as there are gubernatorial candidates for the state of California," Fiorina said.

As the companys HP World show gets underway this week in Atlanta, officials were here on Monday outlining their $300 million "Enjoy More" campaign—which the Palo Alto, Calif., company will launch in the fall and which will focus first on digital photography. It later will cover such aspects as music and videos.

The goal is to create products that are easier to use than their predecessors, she said. For example, the new products reduce from 57 to three the number of steps needed to take and print photos. /zimages/2/27004.jpg

"Today is not about supply chains or patents or profits," Fiorina said. "Today is about a more … rewarding experience. … Consumers really should have to care about all the technology that has to seamlessly work together to create a rewarding experience."

Among the products officials focused on were the HP Photosmart 7960, (the first consumer eight-ink printer) and the HP Photosmart 945 digital camera, which includes the companys Adaptive Lighting technology that automatically accounts for lighting changes. They also talked up HP Image Zone, imaging and printing software that will come with all HP Pavilion desktops and HP Photosmart imaging and printing devices; the software will integrate everything from viewing to editing to storing digital photos.

Other new products include the Pavilion zd7000 series notebook, a 17-inch-wide-screen laptop that integrates digital entertainment, digital photography and Internet capabilities; and the Notebook Expansion base, a laptop work area with a wireless keyboard and optical mouse.

/zimages/2/26680.gifFor more product details, check out PC Magazines roundup of HPs big consumer push.

Vyomesh Joshi, executive vice president of HPs Imaging and Printing Group, said that last years rollout of more than 50 new printing offerings "was all about products. This year, its all about experience."

Another key part of HPs initiative will be 10 centers, created in conjunction with Microsoft Corp., in such retail stores as Circuit City, Micro Center and CompUSA. The centers, staffed by specially-trained employees, will offer consumers demonstrations and workshops involving the products.

A number of the new consumer products will be attractive to small and mid-size businesses, some of whom shop for IT products at the retail stores that host the HP demonstration centers, said Sam Szteindaun, vice president and general manager of North America Consumer Computing at HP. The new HP Presario PCs, for instance, come loaded with Windows XP Pro, he said.

People who run businesses out of their homes will probably want to take advantage of these "by seeing how these products work together," Szteindaun said.

All 158 new products are either available now or will be available within 45 days, Szteindaun said. HP expects to roll out even more consumer products before the holiday season, he added.

/zimages/2/26680.gifCheck out HPs plans for a VCR-to-DVD conversion device.

Editors note: This story has been updated to include comments from Sam Szteindaun.