HP Won't Divorce PCs

Like a cash strapped couple, they can't separate

1 min read

Samuel K. Moore is IEEE Spectrum’s semiconductor editor.

HP Won't Divorce PCs

Back in August I commented on HP's plan-of-the-moment to spin-off its PC business. Following on its abortive effort at the tablet market, the move was a clear indication that the company was giving up on consumers. (My headline was "HP to Consumers: Drop Dead.")

But according to HP's new CEO, Meg Whitman, divorcing PCs from the rest of HP would be too onerous. From the AP story:

The company said that its evaluation of the business unit revealed a deep integration across key operations, such as its supply chain and procurement. Ultimately, the review found that the cost of recreating these operations in a single company outweighed any benefits of separating the PC unit.

So, does this mean the divorce is off, but the resentment remains?

No. Whitman seems to recognize that you can't make a half-effort in the PC business. HP plans to dive into ultrabooks and even take another swing at tablets, this time using Windows 8 instead of Web OS.

Last August I opined that we were in the "post-both-consumer-and-business-focused-technology-conglomerate era." But, I guess I'd forgotten about just how much it can cost to un-conglomerate. Good luck HP.

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