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back to article HP confirms it's back in the smartphone business

A senior HP executive has confirmed that the company will make yet another foray into the smartphone sector, three years after wasting $1.3bn buying webOS and then shutting it down shortly afterwards. "The answer is yes but I cannot give a timetable," Yam Su Yin, HP senior director of consumer PC and media tablets for Asia …

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cd

Make it a ball-shaped dingus

That way, when they drop it, the metaphor will be doubly appropriate.

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Anonymous Coward

Hope so

I know it's kind of unfashionable, but I have a soft spot for HP. Well, it's heritage at least. I've always thought it had to reverse this opt out of the phone market. It would never get back to its innovative roots if it didn't. And I'd like to see it figure out how to do good things again.

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Re: Hope so

I think you're letting nostalgia keep you from seeing what HP has become. We all loved what they where, but they aren't that anymore. I'm not sure they have it in them. most of the innovation has been killed or spun off.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hope so

"Windows Phone 8 might offer some tie-ins with HP's desktop portfolio, but if you're looking to make a splash in the smartphone arena it's better to use an OS people actually want to buy."

Android market is saturated though. Windows phone is growing market share rapidly and already left Blackberry in the dust. If HP can produce a decent device then there is likely a bigger future in Windows phone....

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Re: Hope so

>> Windows phone is growing market share rapidly

There seems to be some debate about that. Some stats-gatherers seem to think it's actually shrinking in some markets (notably the US, Germany and Australia), and that no, it's not bigger than blackberry in all markets (US again).

People mostly don't want Windows phone. MS is just not cool.

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Mushroom

Re: Hope so

"There seems to be some debate about that. "

There really isn't.. Windows Phone grew market share by over 100% in the last year, and Nokia are continuing to expand the product ranges and move into more markets that is underpinning the growth of WP.

"Some stats-gatherers seem to think it's actually shrinking in some markets (notably the US, Germany and Australia), and that no, it's not bigger than blackberry in all markets (US again)."

Some people seem to be confusing installed base (which has a large number of slowly dying legacy Windows Mobile devices) with sales.

Windows Phone has grown year on year in every major market. Windows phone is outselling Blackberry globally - as of April by 8 times! in the US and by about 100% in the UK....

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FAIL

Re: Hope so

The latest Gartner figures I can find are from 1Q13 and show ~50% year on year growth.

Which might be really impressive if the market share (yes, of sales) wasn't still under 3% of the market and still under Blackberry. (reference http://www.gartner.com/newsroom/id/2482816)

This is still a TINY proportion of sales, let alone install base. And compared to the historic market share that older Win based smartphones had, in business and with the public, this is a MASSIVE decline.

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Anonymous Coward

Predictable

I pity the workers.

HP used to be a great engineering company. 20 years ago, people would have chosen to go there and to try and forge a career. What now - it must be with embarrassment they tell people who they work for.

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Facepalm

Re: Predictable

Unless they work for Agilent, who still have most of the market that HP once had and still make some of the very best test equipment available.

Mind you, as someone that used to work for Marconi Instruments said to me once, it's a shame that they chose a name which is an anagram of genital.

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Re: Predictable

"What now - it must be with embarrassment they tell people who they work for."

...or no longer work for after years of service.

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"better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

This stuff is getting a bit old; even the design fuddy-duddies are getting used to slick UIs with nice typography and negative space. Last year everyone was mocking Metro's flatness; now it's all over (and much worse in) the iOS 7 beta. Journos really don't seem to have much of an opinion of their own sometimes.

Lots of people like Windows Phone. There are reasons to not buy it, but most people don't know them.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

For every one person that wants a Windows Phone, there are twenty that don't. I would hardly call that "lot's of people like Windows Phone."

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FAIL

Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

>"better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

Wait this is the company that sells HP-UX right? Hahaha fail.

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WTF?

Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

Interesting to know how many of the "informed" comments, by Anonymous Cowards and others, are made after actually using a Windows Phone device properly. I get the feeling that many are just regurgitating other viewpoints, or looking at reviews, before "advising" others in an attempt to present an image of "look how great I am".

Yes, from a technical viewpoint there is much that can be done on Android that isn't as easy on other operating systems. However from a slickness and usability viewpoint, I find my family members and friends love the OS compared to IOS and Android. I own 2 x Android devices, 1 x iPhone, 1 x Windows Phone 7.5, and 1 x Windows Phone 8, so at least I have tried each of those for myself.

Each to their own of course, however unless you have actually used a Windows Phone 8, any comment made is pretty worthless.

(And yes, I fully expect this post to be down-voted by the Android and Apple fanatics/trolls. For info, my main phone is Android, so I am not anti-Android in any way. I just believe that for many less technical people, the Windows Phone offers a lot, and has it's place.)

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Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

Better than that. For every one Nokia owner that wants a Windows Phone, there are twenty that don't.

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Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

True, but if you put it like this, a lot of "popular" things become unpopular. For everyone one person wanting an iphone, there are 6 who don't - and that number was a lot higher in the past. When the iphone sold a million in 76 days, that was actually 7 billion people who didn't want one.

But instead the iphone gets nothing but hype from the media (including in this article, ranking Apple alongside Samsung - actually it's Nokia who are 2nd place; they make a lot more phones than just WP ones).

Who cares anyway? I like Linux, but people here don't go around saying "For every one person who wants Linux, 99 people don't", and then urge every manufacturer to only offer Windows.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

"For every one person that wants a Windows Phone, there are twenty that don't. I would hardly call that "lot's of people like Windows Phone.""

As of Kantar figures in April 2013, WP already had a 8.4% share of the UK market....From basically nowhere a couple of years ago, that's a lot of people now liking Windows phone....

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Thumb Down

Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

>> From basically nowhere a couple of years ago

And from a dominant position in business and a huge share of the smartphone market over the preceding decade.

MS done screwed up.

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Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

I've never met anyone who actually _owns_ a windows phone that doesn't like it. I still fully intend to buy one to replace my current android set when it finally dies on me - not that I don't like my android phone, or any of the others out there that I could buy instead, but having used WinPho, I like it better.

Is it perfect? No. Nothing is, but I have no idea why people don't buy them. Some of them are even amazingly cheap. I guess the microsoft brand is just so tarnished people won't go near it even when they have a compelling product to offer.

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Re: "better to use an OS people actually want to buy"

>> I've never met anyone who actually _owns_ a windows phone that doesn't like it.

The only person I've ever met who owns (owned?) a windows phone hated it. Granted this was back in the 7 days when there were no custom ringtones allowed, amongst hundreds of other usability issues.

I've rarely seen one since.

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Anonymous Coward

@theOtherJT

> I've never met anyone who actually _owns_ a windows phone

FTFY

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Anonymous Coward

Quite Clearly Android.

1/ They already have an Android tablet out.

2/ Windows Phone is dead, FirefoxOS is stillborn, iOS and Blackberry are closed.

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Re: Quite Clearly Android.

Don't forget the other stillborn OS Ubuntu touch.

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Meh

Re: Quite Clearly Android.

But..unfortunately they talk about a "differentiated" experience. Given that the device will be assembled from the OEM parts bin with at most a token bit of customisation, this could only mean they intend to "add value" with some HP specific overlay on the Android software.

Most operator and phone maker customisation of Android isn't well received; HP have a poor record in software, so you have to wonder what they will bring that differentiaties it, and how well that will be received. At a guess, lots of HP branding, pointless changes to make it look less like Android, creating an overhead that makes updates slow (and expensive for HP), ultimately leading to orphan devices. But those are issues for personal buyers. In the business sector, most users have no say and no choice, and the main smartphone makers have offered some very poorly focused handsets at business, either too cr@p, or too expensive, and invariably carrying features (like cameras) that aren't needed for most business users.

Targeted at corporates, HP can try and push it through the enterprise services channel, and further marginalise the telecoms operators, maybe it will be a success if they make sure that the TCO is in favour of HP branded phones, by raising the support costs for non-HP devices? I wouldn't buy one, because I don't like or trust the company that HP now is. But as a business user, I could well be told that HP are the new corporate standard.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Quite Clearly Android.

"Windows Phone is dead"

Windows Phone is actually the fastest growing mobile OS.

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Re: Quite Clearly Android.

Yep when you go from 0 to even a small number your growth looks amazing. What few percent of market share WP has earned has mostly came from the brand of the phone (Nokia, HTC) or the hardware and not because its a windows phone.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Quite Clearly Android.

@ledswinger

Didn't Dell try that and fail?

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Mushroom

Re: Quite Clearly Android.

"What few percent of market share WP has earned has mostly came from the brand of the phone (Nokia, HTC) or the hardware and not because its a windows phone."

You could say the same for Android / Samsung. What matters is the Windows Phone is still growing market share quite quickly and will likely hit double digits in a number of major markets this year.

The launch this month of the EOS 41 Megapixel Lumia and the Windows Phone App Store becoming more mature with fewer 'missing' popular apps will likely keep that momentum going.

And of course the apparent failure of Blackberry.

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Big question: Windows or Android??

We can only hope a reasonable choice (cough Android cough) is made!

Maybe they will go iOS, I have doubts, but given how things work one never knows!

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Linux

Tee hee, snigger snigger, chortle chortle

"Windows Phone 8 might offer some tie-ins with HP's desktop portfolio, but if you're looking to make a splash in the smartphone arena it's better to use an OS people actually want to buy."

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Devil

Re: Tee hee, snigger snigger, chortle chortle

Windows Phone 8 might offer some tie-ins with HP's desktop portfolio, but if you're looking to make a splash in the smartphone arena it's better to use an OS people actually want to buy."

That sentence must really annoy A.O. ...

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Re: Tee hee, snigger snigger, chortle chortle

"Windows Phone 8 might offer some tie-ins with HP's desktop portfolio,"

The Windows 8 computers that no one is buying. Now they can not buy them together and save twice a much!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Tee hee, snigger snigger, chortle chortle

He's not bothered. He's getting paid.

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Re: Tee hee, snigger snigger, chortle chortle

I love how one million is a runaway success when it's Apple, but 100 million is "no one is buying" when it's MS.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Tee hee, snigger snigger, chortle chortle

Are you attempting to imply that WindowsPhone OS handsets have sold over 100 million since it was rebranded as such?

That number seems unfeasibly large.

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return of the ipaq?

Looks like the "Glisten" was their last phone, with Windows mobile 6.5

http://www.gsmarena.com/hp_ipaq_glisten-3036.php

Obviously HP really has no chance in the mobile space(maybe they can maintain a 10th of 1% of market share or something) unless they're going to invest many billions in product. Anyone heard much of HP's recent foray into Android tablets(short of the initial announcement many months ago)? Yeah, didn't think so.

I was one hoping/expecting they were going to invest said billions into WebOS. But short timer syndrome kicked in yet again...

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Stop

Re: return of the ipaq?

Pay attention bond.

HP slate 7 is out now and running android jellybean.

The HP phone will definitely run Android. Anything else would be suicidal. Windows phone marketshare is in freefall

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Stop

Re: return of the ipaq?

I agree that Android is the most likely choice.

However -

The HP phone will definitely run Android. Anything else would be suicidal. Windows phone marketshare is in freefall

No it isn't, Barry. You want it to be but it's growing like a fungus on the corpse of Blackberry. The latest Kantar results show a continual market share rise at Blackberry's expense.

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Stop

Re: return of the ipaq?

No dogged, the wp8 market can be described like this: consumers buying wp7.5 Nokias, brand to which they are used to use and trust, because of the price and not the OS, and (and here it's the BB bit) the poor souls of the sales department who have to swallow whatever the Vodafones of this world decides because of the contract signed by the companies. Which means, consumers buying the crap and dead-end WP7.5 and the expensive models included in contracts, not people rushing to buy the high-end gear, which are a minority.

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Meh

@JahBless

Presumably you have unimpeachable sources for this declaration?

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Re: return of the ipaq?

And Blackberry's market share is how much, maybe 5% worldwide - so not really making big inroads into Android and iOS, which considering that WP is going on 3yrs old is frankly p*ss poor compared to the achievements of the aforementioned OS's in a similar time scale.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: return of the ipaq?

Windows Phone marketshare now down to 3% (May 2013)

http://www.fiercemobilecontent.com/story/comscore-androids-us-subscriber-growth-rebounds-ios-plateaus/2013-07-01

"Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone also declined in May, sliding from 3.2 percent U.S. market share in February to 3 percent."

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Anonymous Coward

Re: return of the ipaq?

Kantar, schmantar. The latest Comscore results don't.

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Re: return of the ipaq?

I wasn't aware that the US was the entire world.

(And the US market has always been very different from the rest of the world; one where Nokia has always had little presence, and Apple has done its best, with Android not dominating as much compared with the rest of the world - interesting to see then Android having a rebound in the US.)

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Angel

Re: return of the ipaq?

Glad you brought the Ipaq up. I had one with a gps sleeve and a tomtom mouse. It was slightly bigger than my phone now, but did roughly the same. Lets not forget that WebOS was the second time self declared smart people pissed away a good opportunity.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: return of the ipaq?

"Windows Phone marketshare now down to 3% (May 2013)"

That's installed base, not market share, and US only - not a very significant mobile market globally. As per Kantar April, US market share of sales for Windows Phone was 5.6%

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Anonymous Coward

Re: return of the ipaq?

So Microsoft can cherrypick their best regions? As American is the only market that gets Xbox360 numbers reported and shouted about by Microsoft. When it comes to Windows Phone, they are "unique and don't matter"..

Funny that...

The reality is, Windows Phone is dead whatever country you are in. When was the last time you saw anyone with one....

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Paris Hilton

Re: return of the ipaq?

Yesterday in the bus! The first one I have seen "in the wild" here in Copenhagen. I had to look twice to make sure it wasn't an N9 though.

In my train compartment tonight, exactly 7 of the 8 people who I could see reading their phones were using iPhone 4s & 5s (hard to tell exactly at a distance). I saw no other brands.

The last 2 years have seen the iPhone pretty much dominate the market here, and despite wall to wall carpet bombing advertising for Lumias, they are pretty rare.

I conclude via my random observations in public transport every day, that in wealthy societies such as this one, where even the unemployed can afford a new iPhone, people like the iPhone more than other phones.

I choose Paris

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Meh

Re: return of the ipaq?

The iPaq phone was way ahead of it's time. Features we take for granted today were available on it 8 years ago and there are things from it we STILL don't have, like a user facing camera built right INTO the screen, fully integrated and invisible. Or virtual games using the outside camera to project game props or even historical narratives as an overlay of the live image.

It took me years to understand why it failed.

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Mushroom

Re: return of the ipaq?

"As American is the only market that gets Xbox360 numbers reported and shouted about by Microsoft"

Microsoft announced this week that the Xbox 360 overtook the Wii for total console sales in the UK....leaving the PS3 firmly in third place.

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