By Mark Gonzalez: President, Nth Generation Computing, Inc.
This year’s America’s Partner Conference was different from other ones that I’ve attended in the past primarily in both energy level and the focused sense of purpose that I felt from all of the hp Executives. Everyone was “on message” when it came to the importance of the Converged Infrastructure and how the various parts of HP (such as mobility and printing) played into the whole. In years past it seemed like each HP division was focused on their own part of the business, this year it was more like the 3 Musketeers, “All for One”.
Mark Hurd talked about hp’s growth plans and how a lot of the recent growth had come from acquisitions (such as Mercury, EDS etc.) and how they would continue to make investments going forward…. And then pretty much the next day we read in the papers that HP had bought Palm.
Another difference that I noticed was that some of the marketing ads that they typically showed at these events, such as around mobile printing, (the ability to be walking down the street with a hand held device and then printing it to a printer connected to the internet (or to business centers in hotels or Kinko’s) weren’t just internally focused “entertainment”. Since the event I’ve actually seen 2 of them on TV.
All in all I came away with the feeling that hp’s strategy going forward was going to be, “no more Mr. Nice Guy” when it came to the competition – and especially Cisco. If I were Cisco, I wouldn’t be sleeping very well at night.