Former SAP action man Leo Apotheker has revealed his cunning plans (again) to turn the maker of expensive printer ink HP into a company which is just as interesting as the German esoteric business software outfit.
Apotheker has been telling the world how he will turn HP into something really cool – just like Apple. And while you might fear that this will turn into one of those moments where your dad tries to dance at the school disco, Apotheker thinks “cool” is cloud computing products, mobile devices and enterprise services.
We suppose that is in comparison to SAP software, while no one was certain what it did, cloud computing is chilled and mainstream.
Apotheker said that once upon a time, Apple was the cool company with the first PC, the Apple II. Client-server was the new wave of computing in the 1980s, and it changed all that we knew about computing at that time. Things are changing again in IT.
It seems Leo has not noticed that Apple is not famous for its PCs any more. He said that he did not want to make “any silly comparisons”.
“The form factor we now have called TouchPad or tablet or whatever, and the form factor we call PC or notebooks, have come together, which gives us a huge opportunity,” he told bemused hacks.
Leo talked up his new fangled webOS, which he claimed was an “absolutely outstanding operating system”. He said HP’s TouchPad, which will be hitting the shops in June, will show everyone how wonderful it is.
It will also go into every PC because it traverses the spectrum of PCs, tablets, smartphones, printers, everything, and runs them well.
Leo did not say why having two operating systems was a good idea when you already had Windows doing the same thing.
According to Leo, two operating systems is a big advantage for software developers, because they can develop applications for any HP device using the same webOS toolkit and platform.
Apotheker has apparently heard of the popular game “Angry Birds” because its developers ported it to webOS in two days. Two days! he repeated.
Just in case his audience did not get too excited about the prospect of Angry Birds he bought the talk down a bit by talking about petabyte-level enterprise data processing and storage workloads requiring data analytics software and tools.
HP apparently will be “going into that big time”. Of course Big Blue has been there for years, but ,Apotheker said that HP will be rolling out a new platform-as-a-service business for cloud system building.
That’s almost as interesting as anything SAP ever did. He finished off with a quote which sums up his approach to HP’s future. We record it because it is one of those things which might become very important.
“Big doesn’t always move the needle. Smart moves the needle,” Apotheker said. Says it all really.