In their upcoming event, “Think big. Think small. Think beyond.” HP is obviously trying to take a bite out of the Apple stranglehold on the cool-tech market. It’s really not much of a stretch to say so, especially when HP CEO Leo Apotheker tells his audience, “… get rid of your iPhones and iPads.”
In my extensive research I have found that possibly one of the larger implications of HP’s webOS event is a shot across the bow of Microsoft’s enormous software ocean-liner.
Sure, HP is saying that they want to take on Apple. Apple currently owns the market in terms of portable, interchangeable technology with the symbiotic relationship between all of its products; but what is webOS if not an eventual competitor to the Microsoft suite of operating systems?
The world is going smaller and more portable. People don’t want to have to unplug this and then plug into that. They want to click here to move something there. They want to put down their smartphone, pick up their tablet, use that to find their media, click an icon and display it on their TV.
Seriously, can it really be said that Windows Mobile is the same thing as iOS? On the other hand, it can easily be said that webOS is the same thing as iOS (don’t freak out, I know they’re not the *same* thing). If the consumer computing world is migrating away from the desktop model, then Microsoft is quickly losing a large portion of its market-share; and based on what was revealed at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Microsoft is lagging behind.
I don’t think that Microsoft is in any danger of losing it’s dominance in the office; but when it comes to what people start using when they leave the office, the future is most certainly in doubt.
Microsoft has no interest in *only* being in the business of providing office products. We all know how that has turned out for Big Blue. IBM is still a major player; but does anybody still call they’re PC an IBM-compatible? So you can be sure that Microsoft won’t take this assault lying down. Rest-assured, however, that with the webOS platform being one of the big three mobile-consumer computing platforms; it must certainly be on Microsoft’s (and Apple’s) mind that HP isn’t content to just make hardware. They want a share of the whole enchilada.
So February 9th, here we come. Look out Microsoft…oh, and Apple, too!
–the civil commentator