HP wants Palm OS for Web-connected printers, Hurd says
IDG News Service - Hewlett-Packard has already said it will use Palm's webOS in smartphones and slate computers, but on Tuesday it revealed it has another category of products in mind: printers.
HP is buying Palm because it wants the company's operating system to use in Web-connected printers, Chairman and CEO Mark Hurd said during HP's quarterly earnings call. The printers let people print maps, theater tickets and other content straight from the Internet, without needing to start a PC.
"You've now got a whole series of Web-connected printers that, as they connect to the Web, need an OS. We prefer that OS to be our [intellectual property], where we can control the customer experience," Hurd said when asked about HP's motives for the US$1.2 billion deal to buy Palm.
"You can certainly make the same case for smaller form-factor products in the mobile world, like a slate," he added.
HP does want to grow Palm's smartphone business, Hurd said, but that's not its only motivation for buying the company, and possibly not even the biggest.
"It isn't precisely a smartphone play as I've seen some people write," Hurd said. The deal is "strategically broader" for HP. "It really has more to do with the IP," he said, meaning the intellectual property, or Palm's webOS.
Microsoft is still an important partner, Hurd was quick to add, but HP wants its own OS for certain devices.
"Microsoft is probably one of the best relationships we've got in our company, and they're still extremely important to us," he said. "There are a couple of form factors, though, that are very attractive for us, and these small form factors is where we think the IP can be very additive."
HP announced its plans to acquire Palm last month. The company's webOS has won some praise, but Palm has still struggled to compete against Apple's iPhone, Research In Motion's BlackBerry, and a new wave of handsets based on Google's Android OS. HP hopes to close the deal in the third quarter, subject to approval from Palm's stockholders.
HP unveiled its most advanced Web-connected printer last June, the Photosmart Premium with TouchSmart Web. It has a 4.3-inch touchscreen that lets users view, format and print content from Web sites that HP has partnerships with, such as Google Maps, the USA Today newspaper, Coupons.com and the Fandango ticket service.
It also hooks up to an HP store where customers can download applications for other Web sites. Hurd also suggested that HP plans to use Palm's app store for its printers and other devices.
- An Insightful Approach to Optimizing Mainframe MLC Spend This paper discusses how you can penetrate the complexity of IBM mainframe MLC products and the MLC price model to gain insight into...
- Meeting the Exploding Demand for New IT Services In this eBook, explore the top trends driving the New IT for IT Service Management, and how leading organizations are evolving to focus...
- Hybrid IT-A Low-Risk Path from On-Premise to ITaaS This white paper provides a strategy to move part or all of your ITSM suite to the cloud as a stepping stone to...
- Paving the Windows XP Migration Path to Success Support for Windows XP has ended, leaving organizations with three choices: Windows 8, Windows 7 or a combination. With the right planning and...
- Increase Your Data Center IQ Discover how to improve network efficiency, lower IT costs and more proactively manage your physical, virtual and cloud environments.
- Optimize Data Center Resources and Plan for the Future Eliminate over-provisioning and capacity shortfalls with pro-active capacity optimization. Join us in the evolution from capacity monitoring to capacity optimization in your data... All Hardware White Papers | Webcasts