Is HP dead?


By mdovell   Follow   Fri, 19 Aug 2011, 6:05pm   2,075 views   23 comments
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They are down about 44% year to date. A simple glance at activity over the past decade shows they have been on a binge buying out plenty of companies. They bought out compaq which bought out digital. They bought out palm which also bought out be.

The shocking thing is they announced they are not just discontinuing the phones (Pre's) but also the tablet...that just came out seven weeks ago (they just dropped the price from $500 to $400). I'm no consultant but I know a fair amount of the history of various products going back a few decades and I can't think of any major company that has discontinued a product after seven weeks.

HP has 300K employees world wide. Just a few months ago they stated they would expand in the bay area
http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/newsroom/press/2011/110406a.html

I have never see a company outright quit so easily. Microsoft usually has dates when support is discontinued. Linux has distributions for when support will end...but to go seven weeks a a product that is supposed to compete is pretty sad.

Many of you are from the Bay Area. What have you heard about HP lately?

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  1. RG


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    1   9:24pm Fri 19 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Actually, they just dropped the price to $99 ;)

    I doubt the PSG group will ever recover. They may pull an IBM and become a services company, you never know.

  2. Kevin


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    2   11:45pm Fri 19 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    What do you mean you never know? They said explicitly that they'd become a services company. They're also getting out of the PC business.

  3. justme


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    3   8:16am Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Google should buy HP (yes, tongue is in cheek, at least partly)

  4. Vicente


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    4   9:30am Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Google probably should. The big game right now is not so much acquiring a company for it's manufacturing or employee expertise, it's the PATENT portfolios.

  5. B.A.C.A.H.


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    5   11:09am Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Does it mean that all of the hullaballoo over the Compaq "merger", the proxy vote over it which seemed like a referendum on Carly, all turned out to be irrelevant now?

  6. Kevin


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    6   2:28pm Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    No company could afford HP. A merger is possible,butunlikely

  7. ¥


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    7   4:13pm Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    If HPQ disappeared, would anyone notice, or care?

    Would anything be lost?

    Has HPQ done anything interesting in the past 20 years?

    Other than killing DEC and the Alpha?

    They seem to be more of a cancer.

    Though my 4MP would probably still be plugging away, 20 years later, had I not left it in Japan in 2000. The LaserJet 1200 I got ~10 years ago is still working.

    They should focus on printers I guess.

  8. Vicente


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    8   6:25pm Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    God yes, I had a LaserJet 4M+ and that thing was a TANK. Had max RAM and a network card. I sold it, but I'm sure wherever it is now, it's still working fine.

  9. thomas.wong1986


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    9   8:47pm Sat 20 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    mdovell says

    I have never see a company outright quit so easily.

    Sun Micro, and many years ago Tandem, and IBM pretty much rolled over and called it quits. Over the past 10 years, pretty much many software companies found an fast exist being aquired by Oracle. Shit really really fast in SV, and its pretty much over before it started.

    Bellingham Bob says

    Has HPQ done anything interesting in the past 20 years?

    Not much in the past 20 years, but spin off its orginal core business as Agilent, O-scope and many other measuring devices.

  10. mdovell


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    10   5:48am Sun 21 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    thomas.wong1986 says

    Sun Micro, and many years ago Tandem, and IBM pretty much rolled over and called it quits. Over the past 10 years, pretty much many software companies found an fast exist being aquired by Oracle. Shit really really fast in SV, and its pretty much over before it started.

    Well...IBM was screwed over by microsoft. OS/2 could have been good but windows killed it off. IBM also made the power PC processor (or at least helped) but when apple allowed intel chips that was a big deal.

    Sun made Java which tried to do something. There was always this thought in the mid to late 90's they would make their own os..what ever happened to jini?

    But I agree that the prices have declined so much that it makes it harder to warrant. The reason why this really stands out to me is anyone selling HP products might be taken for a ride. Who is going to buy any pc's made by them if there is no support? This could end up being dumped on the market just as school season starts.

  11. thomas.wong1986


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    11   2:44am Mon 22 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    SF ace says

    I'm amazed how cheap PC's and laptops are nowadays. 10 years ago, a top of the line laptop goes for 2,000 and a desktop for 1,400, nowadays, you will be insane to even spend half that amount and even need to consider replacing them

    Nothing amazing about it when compared to over the last 25-30 years. It was very well predicted as far back to the mid-late 80s this would occur. This is why IBM Tandem HP Amdel got out of the Mainframe business. That is the reason many harddrive storage companies went out of business or were bought out. Same reason Apple nearly went into bankrupcy.

    Revenue per unit dropping along with higher costs per unit due to high employee costs (high home costs) dont mix well.

    You cant burn a candle at both ends.. it doesnt work.

  12. thomas.wong1986


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    12   2:49am Mon 22 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    mdovell says

    Who is going to buy any pc's made by them if there is no support? This could end up being dumped on the market just as school season starts.

    Build your own.. not that hard. There was a small retailer(Acorn Computers) back in the 80-90s and they sold parts and provided in-house workshop for the consumer to put it together.
    You pretty much learned to put it together, fix it, and make upgrades. It a lot easier today vs back than.

  13. thomas.wong1986


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    13   2:50am Mon 22 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    mdovell says

    they would make their own os..what ever happened to jini?

    Kinda happened with Linux distros, Beos now Hiku, and other flavors.

  14. DennisN


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    14   3:43am Mon 22 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Bellingham Bob says

    Other than killing DEC and the Alpha?

    Actually HP didn't want the Alpha design team when they bought DEC, and Intel ended up getting them for a song. For better or worse, there's a lot of Alpha heritage in Itanium.

    It's odd that HP now wants to focus on the server market, after getting out of the joint development with Intel of the Itanium processor.

  15. corntrollio


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    15   3:39pm Tue 23 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Bellingham Bob says

    Though my 4MP would probably still be plugging away, 20 years later, had I not left it in Japan in 2000. The LaserJet 1200 I got ~10 years ago is still working.

    Yes, I have an 10xx series that is still cranking very well after 8 years. Meanwhile every inkjet piece of crap seems to conk out quickly and cost you a bundle in ink.

    HP doesn't really have the market cornered on non-laser machines though, do they? I didn't think they had the best photo printers, necessarily.

    SF ace says

    HPQ could have been Apple, so management was the difference.

    How could HP have been Apple? Apple still controls software quite tightly, but HP never really had that opportunity because of MSFT. Are you talking about purely design?

    There still seem to be opportunities in services and infrastructure, but the competitors have a bit of a lead, even though HP makes a good bit from services.

  16. jvolstad


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    16   5:15pm Tue 23 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    HP dead? I hope not. I work with HP Nonstop servers.

  17. everything


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    17   6:34pm Tue 23 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    Well, back in 1999, HP apparently hired a wanabee politician/lawyer, as CEO, and they stayed until 2005, as their CEO, what did they do?, layoff employees, outsource, offshore, so nothing. After the tech crash that was the time for ingenuity, still nothing. Just buy the other guy out mentality .. and copy what other industrial players are doing.

    I agree, HP has lost it's way, probably all the talent left when they put Carly in charge. Mark Hurd, focused on stock price, and again, cut employees, where is the research and development?, they all went somewhere else!, well take a look a the stock price now.

    Now HP has purchased Autonomy Corp. as of last week. Not much new ideas coming from HP, they are lost.

  18. EBGuy


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    18   7:40pm Tue 23 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    I'm not dead, yet. Ever hear of the memristor.

  19. Clara


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    19   10:28pm Tue 23 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    I still don't understand why and how the heck 50 billions??!! Several months ago, market cap is 80 billions. WTF.

    HP is a loser company and nothing they made is worth mentioning. Fuck them. Die, please. HP is against innovation and creativity. Boring brand, boring products.

  20. B.A.C.A.H.


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    20   10:34pm Tue 23 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    EBGuy says

    I'm not dead, yet. Ever hear of the memristor.

    Oxygen vacancies in oxides of metal, eh? If you follow the literature you'll read that everyone under the sun is working on that.

  21. thomas.wong1986


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    21   1:53am Wed 24 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    SF ace says

    I love to put on the CEO cap and think business strategy, so here is my take on it from someone looking purely from the outside with no real information.

    Here is what they are actually saying...the current cost structure no matter what business you enter is way too expensive.

    On The Record / Carl Guardino
    May 13, 2007

    Q: So are those really challenges?

    A: Unequivocally, yes. Not only to the CEOs in the boardroom, but to any family you talk to in their living room. What we hear time after time from CEOs as well as frontline employees is how incredibly difficult it is to come here and stay here. That truly does have an impact on a company's bottom line when the cost differential is so much higher here than it is in other regions around the state, nation and globe, or the ability to recruit top talent is also impacted.

    You mentioned housing. It probably is the top concern we hear about in Silicon Valley from both CEOs and employees in terms of local issues. Does that have an impact? Let me put a finer point on it.

    Hewlett-Packard and Dell are the top two computer-makers in the world. Corporate headquarters for HP are located in Palo Alto and Dell is in Round Rock, Texas. Obviously, they both have people and facilities around the globe.

    In those two communities where their corporate headquarters are and where a lot of research and development takes place, the median resale price for a home in Palo Alto is about $1.6 million. In Round Rock, Texas, it's about $180,000, except the home and property are bigger.p>

    We hear from HP all the time that a huge deterrent to the ability to recruit and retain people anywhere near Silicon Valley is the housing issue. We don't hear that from Dell, which is also a member company, about their operations in Round Rock. It does continue to plague us and we will continue to sound the alarm.

  22. DennisN


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    22   11:43am Wed 24 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    It would be interesting if HP was to get bought out by a bigger company. If they didn't adopt the HP name, then Agilent would feel free to rebrand itself once again as Hewlett-Packard.

  23. SDengineer


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    23   12:12pm Wed 24 Aug 2011   Share   Quote   Permalink   Like   Dislike  

    HP is doing precisely what IBM did when they sold off their PC division. Same with Nokia moving away from Symbian. Its not a coincidence we are seeing not only consolidation in tech but more of a back to basics model as we shift into a new era of mobile tech.
    HP is basically they have 0 confidence in the consumer market for the next decade and are looking to support business infrastructure which IMHO is a wise move on their part to cut their losses now. There is almost no profit for them in PCs anymore, let the kiddies like Acer and Dell fight that battle.

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