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  1.    #1  
    3 thoughts from a casual observer with no inside knowledge:

    1. The brain drain at Palm after the HP acquisition has almost derailed the development process...don't think the "hundreds" of HP employees shifted to WebOs have helped.

    2. Maybe Mark Hurd was right...HP doesn't care about smartphones, and is spending most of its time on tablets and printers.

    3. Todd Bradley is toxic, and anything he touches turns to crap

    Feel free to tell me how off-base this is...
  2. #2  
    Quote Originally Posted by horatio8 View Post
    3 thoughts from a casual observer with no inside knowledge:

    1. The brain drain at Palm after the HP acquisition has almost derailed the development process...don't think the "hundreds" of HP employees shifted to WebOs have helped.

    2. Maybe Mark Hurd was right...HP doesn't care about smartphones, and is spending most of its time on tablets and printers.

    3. Todd Bradley is toxic, and anything he touches turns to crap

    Feel free to tell me how off-base this is...
    Sorting this out
    1. Brain drain
    I would guess anytime there is a brain drain, you lose some people that you really need for development so certainly this hurt.
    More importantly, from what I understand, the transition to Enyo which is a new language is almost restarting the development from scratch. On the other hand, apparently Enyo has alot of positives, including the ability to transition easily from pad to phone in various design sizes and also the ability to code/debug straight in a browser, rather than an emulator.

    In addition, even with the former team at Palm, execution problems still existed. These seem to be carrying over to HP in the way it mis-handled communication and has not (yet?) provided a solution to mis-continuity for the current customers. There seems to be something missing here in Palm's leadership concerning execution and it has carried to HP rather than HP fixing it.

    Question here: how long will it take developers--whether 3rd party or HP--to make this transition and develop key apps

    2. The fact that Enyo will be on 3.0 and the Pre3 still on a 2.0 version suggests tablets are a priority. Pre3 hardware seems to be getting good reviews. Unknown where the software will be at launch and after, so hard to tell if you are right until 6-12 months from now.

    3. I'd like to hear more why you think Bradley is not a good leader, specifically what has he done that has failed in the past?
    Last edited by bluenote; 02/15/2011 at 10:25 AM.
  3. #3  
    I'm sure that the brains that went to Nokia are thinking twive about that move...
  4. #4  
    First, anytime there is a merger some people leave. Some of these are cases where positions were overstaffed with the two combined firms. Some of these are people who didn't fit with the new combined corporate culture. Some of these were people who saw their climb up the ladder hurt by the merger and there are other reasons. Frankly, the "brain drain" has been, I think, vastly overstated by the haters in the forums.

    2. It's pretty clear and has been expressed by HP exec's themselves that HP's vision is to develop a robust ecosystem approaching the "device agnostic" vision which has been speculated about here at precentral.net. Smartphones are a part of that vision, but not the end-all-be-all of it. HP's going to keep making phones and be a player in this space, but the vision is clearly much larger.

    3. As best I can tell, you're just wrong about Bradley. He doesn't have the cool kid aura Steve Jobs does, but the guy is a darn good tech company executive. However, I think this says it better than I can:

    Note To Hewlett Packard: Hire Todd Bradley As CEO Before You Lose Him Too

    Gargoyle
  5.    #5  
    I don't think Bradley distinguished himself while CEO of Palmone, but I'm willing to concede I may be too harsh.

    I agree that turnover is expected after a merger/acquisition, but it seemed that the entire development team other than Rubenstein, flew out the door. Some went to Apple, and unfortunately, some went to Nokia. It would be one thing if HP had a duplicate team, but it's not obvious to me that HP had mobile operating hardware/software development professionals ready to step up.

    I'll say one more time, these opinions are only from what I've read, and others with more inside information might know better.
  6.    #6  
    I also think this "big vision" stuff is an excuse for not getting product out the door.
  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by gargoylejps View Post
    First, anytime there is a merger some people leave. Some of these are cases where positions were overstaffed with the two combined firms. Some of these are people who didn't fit with the new combined corporate culture. Some of these were people who saw their climb up the ladder hurt by the merger and there are other reasons. Frankly, the "brain drain" has been, I think, vastly overstated by the haters in the forums.
    The brain-drain has been vastly understated by the unswervably zealous of the Pre community.

    Quote Originally Posted by gargoylejps
    2. It's pretty clear and has been expressed by HP exec's themselves that HP's vision is to develop a robust ecosystem approaching the "device agnostic" vision which has been speculated about here at precentral.net. Smartphones are a part of that vision, but not the end-all-be-all of it. HP's going to keep making phones and be a player in this space, but the vision is clearly much larger.
    I thought this was clear before the 9 Feb event, but that turned out to be all about unfinished devices with no mention of a broader ecosystem except in the most general, non-specific terms. Big fail here on HP's part.

    Quote Originally Posted by gargoylejps
    . As best I can tell, you're just wrong about Bradley. He doesn't have the cool kid aura Steve Jobs does, but the guy is a darn good tech company executive.
    He failed miserably as the CEO at Palm. He's done literally nothing as the top guy at HP for PDAs and Phones in the last 5 years.
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by Kupe View Post
    He's done literally nothing as the top guy at HP for PDAs and Phones in the last 5 years.
    Wrong, He bought Palm, and left PDA to R.I.P. as it should.
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by chalx View Post
    Wrong, He bought Palm, and left PDA to R.I.P. as it should.
    Buying Palm has had no tangible effect yet, so you can't attribute that to Bradley's successes. As to PDAs, they are still available for sale on the HP site so they're not RIP - they're more like 2001. You probably didn't know HP sells smartphones did you. Windows Mobile smartphones - not the Windows Phone 7 variety. Well, if you didn't know this you're like most of the rest of the planet. Yep, out-of-date PDAs and unknown phones are Bradley's legacy in the mobile device market so far after 6 years at the helm. Add to that the expenditure of $1.2B to buy Palm and a not-well-received debut of their first jointly produced products. Thanks Mr. Bradley!
  10. #10  
    Citing the article I linked, Bradley has grown the revenue in his group to $42B, improving profitability by 300% and has taken the #1 computer manufacturer mantel away from Dell. In the business world that's a pretty good track record. Fortunately for HP, it seems like Bradley is pretty happy right where he is for the foreseeable future.

    As for his tenure at Palm. As best I can tell, Bradley led Palm from 2001 - 2005. I believe it was under Bradley that Palm merged with handspring and added the Treo line to their offerings. Again, hardly a bad track record. Moreover, most every publication in the industry lists Bradley as a top rated tech exec.

    Gargoyle
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by Kupe View Post
    You probably didn't know HP sells smartphones did you. Windows Mobile smartphones - not the Windows Phone 7 variety. Well, if you didn't know this you're like most of the rest of the planet. Yep, out-of-date PDAs and unknown phones are Bradley's legacy in the mobile device market so far after 6 years at the helm.
    I know, my company is using mobileorder software for merchandising and it runs on hp 613c win mobile 6.1. device. its far better than symbols. few thousand hp winmobile devices are in daily use just in Belgrade, Serbia. God knows how much in US.
  12. #12  
    I think HP has three major issues that don't have much to do with personnel:

    1. HP is trying to transition from a commodity, (read cheap) brand, to a premium brand. That is a Herculean task.

    2. HP is trying to shift from being a boring, business solutions company, to a cool, consumer electronics company.

    3. HP has no one, even now, who can produce and proclaim a unified vision of what HP is all about and where they are going. Yet, they desperately need such a person if they are going to have a chance at accomplishing 1 and 2.

    Compounding the problem is the fact that HP is trying to do these things all at once. They have thrown themselves into competitive areas well outside their core competencies. They seem to be splashing about in the cold, deep ocean without bothering to learn to sail or put on a life-vest.

    None of this is to say that they can't have some measure of success in this brave new world. But they are running an uphill race. It is not easy to just buy your way into the consumer electronics industry.
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by dandbj13 View Post
    It is not easy to just buy your way into the consumer electronics industry.
    I was following you until there. Mobile phone industry maybe, but consumer electronics is a bit to far reaching. If you sum all of HP's consumer electronics something tells me they are in the same ball park as Apple.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by Titan078 View Post
    I was following you until there. Mobile phone industry maybe, but consumer electronics is a bit to far reaching. If you sum all of HP's consumer electronics something tells me they are in the same ball park as Apple.
    Really? What are the products you are referring to? Honest question. I don't know of any popular CE products from HP.
  15. #15  
    For starters, HP makes some of the most popular calculators on the market (personally speaking, you would have to pry my HP 10BII out of my cold, dead hands to take it away from me). Do we even need to bring up HP's position in printers? For that matter, do we need to bring up HP's position in computers either? Yes, they make many low end and value tier computers, but they also make several top-rated, top-tier computers as well. A company doesn't become the #1 PC manufacturer for nothing. Beyond that, HP has actually had some success in cameras too.

    I think HP's actually been pretty clear about their vision and strategy; although, it is a very robust and large strategy. I forget who wrote it, but one of the writers here at precentral summed it up nicely a few months ago in ultimately providing an HP device agnostic future. In that, I think HP is not trying to be "cool" in the sense of Apple is for the moment, with teens gushing about their latest offerings. Leo's comments were more likely cool in the sense of HP's products being clearly in the conversation of the top-tier tech offerings. I can see HP doing something like Apple with their iTunes, or BlackBerry with their email, to get consumers to buy in to an ecosystem their reluctant to leave, but I think that's where the emulation will end.

    Gargoyle
  16.    #16  
    I think the low margins in their PC business argue that top-tier computers are not what's driving their success. I really want to believe Gargoyle's rosy scenario, but calculators, printers, a vague big picture vision, and long timelines are not giving me comfort.
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by gargoylejps View Post
    For starters, HP makes some of the most popular calculators on the market

    Gargoyle
    If this doesn't bode well I don't know what will.
  18. #18  
    foosball, you obviously don't work in accounting, or finance. While we do a lot of work in spreadsheets and other proprietary software packages, there's still plenty of value in a good quality business calculator (especially since the braniacs at MS still cannot get Excel to properly calculate a NPV). Moreover, your lack of decent business sense is quite amusing. Would you abandon a market where your firm has established a quality brand image, gained tremendous economies of scale, where you (for that market) can charge a premium price and requires fairly minimal reinvestment because it's not the "hot" market du jour? Genius! That is if you're looking to give away returns to competitors and bankrupt your firm chasing the "sexy" market.

    Gargoyle
  19. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by UntidyGuy View Post
    Are you referring to the "Palm" brand which HP just discarded?
    Actually, in this case I was referring to HP's brand in business calculators. I was replying to foosball's somewhat snarky reply to my earlier post. I guess I'm getting a bit sharp tongued myself these days (at least on these message boards), getting tired of the chicken little's and people trying to pump up their egos by putting down HP/Palm and those who want to see webOS succeed.

    Gargoyle
  20.    #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by gargoylejps View Post
    Actually, in this case I was referring to HP's brand in business calculators. I was replying to foosball's somewhat snarky reply to my earlier post. I guess I'm getting a bit sharp tongued myself these days (at least on these message boards), getting tired of the chicken little's and people trying to pump up their egos by putting down HP/Palm and those who want to see webOS succeed.

    Gargoyle
    We all want HPalm to succeed, and I also am attached to my old hand calculator - but face it, by any measure (revenue, profits, brand image) calculators are almost completely irrelevant in today's tech world. I'll also repeat that HP's desktop business is growing, but with low profit margins. Printers/Ink does ok, but HP's recent growth is coming on the business services side. They could really use strong growth on the consumer electronics side, but it is difficult for a reasonable person to be optimistic. There are no haters in this thread, just skeptics.
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