or Connect
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › HP shareholders question why company isn't more like Apple
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

HP shareholders question why company isn't more like Apple

post #1 of 130
Thread Starter 
During the Q&A session of Hewlett Packard's annual shareholder meeting, individuals grilled CEO Meg Whitman on why the company isn't as innovative and successful as Silicon Valley neighbor and rival Apple.

Apple figured strongly into three of the questions raised by stockholders at the company's meeting .

For instance, one individual recounted how he had asked Apple co-founder Steve Jobs years ago how his company planned to compete with bigger PC makers like HP. Jobs reportedly told him that Apple products are "just better" and their technology is "years ahead of the competition, especially in mobile."

"[Jobs has] been correct," the shareholder noted, pointing out that Apple is now worth more than 10 times HP's market cap. He went on to say that Apple had succeeded in a space where HP "used to be dominant."

"Do you think HP was and is innovative enough?" he asked Whitman.

Whitman responded first by acknowledging Apple's extraordinary accomplishments in recent years.

"We all have to applaud Apple for their success," she replied. "This is one of the great business renaissance stories of our generation. I have to say Steve Jobs is one of the business leaders of our generation."

She also reminded the gentleman that HP remains "No. 1 or No. 2 in every business" it competes in, while expressing her continued commitment to R&D and and products.


HP CEO Meg Whitman


Another investor complained that HP doesn't have convenient retail stores with repair service like Apple does. He pointed out that he has to wait two to three weeks for a new printhead to be shipped from HP's facility on the East Coast when his printer is broken.

"There are obvious ways that you can improve the way HP appears to the customer," he added.

Whitman replied by highlighting the company's retail initiative in Brazil. She couldn't promise that the economics would work out in the United States, but she did say that she was working on improving HP's website.

Yet another investor pointed to Apple's vision and success in the market. He wanted to know whether HP had a similar vision and had anything innovative "cooking in HP's labs."

Whitman reassured that HP was founded on the "power of innovation" and "disruptive technology." She did admit that the company, in recent years, has underfunded revolutionary innovation in favor of more evolutionary and incremental innovation.

"We've got to place some bets on disruptive or revolutionary innovation," she said.

The executive qualified that she's hesitant to purchase revolutionary innovation through acquisitions and cautioned that the company will be making such purchases less frequently.

Whitman said she is a "big believer in focus" and encourages her leaders to just do "a few small things well."

HP has had a rocky year. After less than a year on the job, HP ousted CEO Léo Apotheker last September and appointed Whitman in his stead. Just one month prior, Apotheker had shocked the industry by announcing that HP was abandoning development of webOS devices and hinting that it might spin-off its PC business. The news sent HP's stock into a freefall.

Whitman was left to deal with cleaning up after Apotheker's dramatic announcements. She announced last October that HP would in fact keep its PC business. Last December, she announced that HP would keep webOS and contribute it to the open source community.

[ View article on AppleInsider ]
post #2 of 130
Captain, isn't that an iceberg coming by starboard?
post #3 of 130
Coz We aren't them
post #4 of 130
I remember once when HP made fun of Apple for giving tours of Jobs' garage. Now Apple is building a new campus on land that was once owned by HP.
post #5 of 130
IMHO, a big part of HP's downfall is a lack of quality. I have an HP calculator that was built sometime between 1982 and 1989. That's at least 23 years ago. And it's still going strong. And the HP-12C, first introduced in 1981, is still being sold today.

On the other hand, I bought a new HP calculator a few years ago so my son could use it for homework, with the expectation that I would get it when he was done. Even though he didn't abuse it (there aren't any cracks or scratches) the keyboard did not survive a full 3 years.

HP used to be known for high quality, carefully thought out equipment. Now they're more known for mid-tier PCs and throwaway inkjets. That's not how you build brand loyalty. As long they're more concerned about being number 1 or 2 in each market than in building equipment that's "insanely great" in capabilities AND quality, their malaise will continue.
post #6 of 130
How would have the world been if HP forced ownership on Woz for the Apple I
Household: MacBook, iPad 16gb wifi, iPad 64gb wifi, iPad Mini 32gb, coming iPhone 5S, iPhone 4S 32gb, iPhone 32gb, iPod Touch 4th gen x1, iPod nano 16gb gen 5 x2, iPod nano gen 3 8gb, iPod classic...
Reply
Household: MacBook, iPad 16gb wifi, iPad 64gb wifi, iPad Mini 32gb, coming iPhone 5S, iPhone 4S 32gb, iPhone 32gb, iPod Touch 4th gen x1, iPod nano 16gb gen 5 x2, iPod nano gen 3 8gb, iPod classic...
Reply
post #7 of 130
HP shareholders question why company isn't more like Apple?

Plain simple: because HP uses Microsoft products (Windows, etc), and they are CRAP!
post #8 of 130
After the way HP handled it's Palm acquisition I have no faith in them. They had something good and with some work could be made into something great and they squandered it.

iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.66GHz 8GB RAM 120GB Intel 320M
Mac mini Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz 8GB RAM, iPhone 5 32GB Black

Reply

iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
MacBook Pro 15" Core i7 2.66GHz 8GB RAM 120GB Intel 320M
Mac mini Core 2 Duo 2.4GHz 8GB RAM, iPhone 5 32GB Black

Reply
post #9 of 130
then they need to fire everyone at the top, starting with the board. All the non-contributors need to be fired as well.

This is exactly what Steve Jobs did. He did not just cut the fat, he remade Apple into what it needed to be.

Meg is seeming more and more like HPs new puppet. She says what everyone wants to hear, but do not have, or given real authority. It is probably only a matter of time until HP decides to blame and fire her as well.

Neither HP, Microsoft, Samsung, Acer nor any company in Apple's industry is willing to make the hard decisions, hence stuck where they are and will be for a long, long time. No company death, just a long drawn out empty existence losing money and chasing the market share.

Companies with HPs caliber should not keep execs and employees who only want to keep cashing until retirement day. Fascination with market share while receiving no real ROI needs to stop.

None of this will happen of course. Newer companies that change with the market have better luck at rising to the top than these old dogs that pretend to want change, but are unwilling to take the steps to make it happen.

Sorry fatcats. You can't have your cake and eat it too.
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
Reply
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
Reply
post #10 of 130
The question implies that if HP just followed the same procedures as Apple, they would have the same results. But there's no procedure for creativity.

The only real thing you can do to enhance creativity is hire people who really care about what they're working on. But that means people who want to make things, not money. And like most CEOs I suspect Meg is an expert at making money, and couldn't build something to save her life, so it sets the wrong tone from the top down. How about promoting from within.
post #11 of 130
RIM already did that.

Promoting from within would only perpetuate HP's current ineffective corporate culture. HP resembles that Office Space movie with its inane executives with delusions of grandeur. Unfortunately, it is now the norm rather than the exception.

No, HP wants change but is unwilling to make the hard decisions. They will fire employees at the bottom first before addressing the problem at the top.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

How about promoting from within.
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
Reply
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
Reply
post #12 of 130
To be fare to Meg, who in my opinion is out the door in a year or less, HP has peaked and is now a planned obsolescence , 5000 pound lazy a$$ gorilla.

Their printers are cheap with over priced ink.
Their pcs are nothing but wintel boxes with their effing name stamped on the side.
Their calculator are pathetic now. Tell me why the f*** do their high end graphing calcs still use the same damn UI from 20 years ago?
post #13 of 130
HP used to be a little bit more like Apple, in that they were a high-quality, high-margin, moderate volume business. Then they idiotically bought Compaq, a low-quality, low-margin, high-volume business. The worst possible clash of corporate cultures ensued and devastated HP.

The way for HP to become more like Apple is to spin off Compaq.
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
Mac user since August 1983.
Reply
post #14 of 130
What a grim smile... are those her upper or lower teeth?
post #15 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by maccherry View Post

To be fare to Meg, who in my opinion is out the door in a year or less, HP has peaked and is now a planned obsolescence , 5000 pound lazy a$$ gorilla.

Their printers are cheap with over priced ink.
Their pcs are nothing but wintel boxes with their effing name stamped on the side.
Their calculator are pathetic now. Tell me why the f*** do their high end graphing calcs still use the same damn UI from 20 years ago?

Yikes, they just keep going through CEOs. Maybe the CEOs are not the problem but the board as Larry Ellison has said in the past. They appear to be boneheads.
post #16 of 130
...but, but HP are winning, look at their market share.

/s
A problem occurred with this webpage so it was reloaded.A problem occurred with this webpage so it was reloaded.A problem occurred with this webpage so it was reloaded.A problem occurred with this...
Reply
A problem occurred with this webpage so it was reloaded.A problem occurred with this webpage so it was reloaded.A problem occurred with this webpage so it was reloaded.A problem occurred with this...
Reply
post #17 of 130
Talent. Talent. Talent.

Meg was turned down for work at Apple.

HP stopped being considered innovative around 1994.

Sun Engineers I used to eat lunch with wanted to work at NeXT and later Apple.

It starts at the top. You cannot create a Steve Jobs. You cannot create a Jony Ivy.

Very few companies have natural leaders. Lots of narcissism, but very little leadership.

Imagination and a high aesthetic for taste and how to shape it is not taught. You discover it or your do not. Lots of friends come from various engineering, liberal arts and business backgrounds.

All talented to do tasks, when a solid vision is in place. Creating that vision is an entirely different ball of wax. It either surfaces as a child and grows from there as you get older or it does not.

Meg couldn't lead a creative, highly driven engineering vision to fruition due to having none of these qualities in her.

Odd, weird and unique were all qualities described of Steve as he grew up and developed Apple, then NeXT, PIXAR and back at Apple.

There are tons of degrees in the Valley. Not so much when it comes to personalities that stand out in a crowd.

Steven P. Jobs is an original. It's not something you see more than once or twice in a life time.
post #18 of 130
Apotheker's actions were correct IMHO. HP should follow IBM not Apple as an example. This about turn is akin to Kodak going back to silver halides to save their ass.
Use duckduckgo.com with Safari, not Google Search
Been using Apples since 1978 and Macs since 1984
Long on AAPL so biased. Strong advocate for separation of technology and politics on AI.
Reply
Use duckduckgo.com with Safari, not Google Search
Been using Apples since 1978 and Macs since 1984
Long on AAPL so biased. Strong advocate for separation of technology and politics on AI.
Reply
post #19 of 130
Well Steve indicated the recipe, which is pretty simple (to understand, I mean ...) : design and manufacture insanely great products, and the consumers will open their purse ...
post #20 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Granmastak View Post

Yikes, they just keep going through CEOs. Maybe the CEOs are not the problem but the board as Larry Ellison has said in the past. They appear to be boneheads.

Agreed. Their biggest problem is -- and has been, since Fiorina days -- the Board. Combative, suspicious, incompetent, and dysfunctional.

Meg Whitman came from there too.

HP is finished. Unless shareholders vote out the existing Board and install a new one.
post #21 of 130
HP and its PC competitors are in a race to the bottom trying to be cut throat on price and have no interest in their customers. Until PC companies figure out they are in business to make a profit, they will continue to litter the road with fail computer companies of the past.
post #22 of 130
On an aside, can someone explain to me why companies like HP and ATT have such utterly horrid support sites?

I mean, they are both massive tech companies. You're telling me that they can't manage to hire ANYONE who can make their web-support sites actually navigable? Jesus.

If they could get it to GeoCitites level, I would be happy.
post #23 of 130
The decline of HP started years ago with Carly.

The core of HP was innovation and quality. Now that is lost.

More recently HP has attempted to 'Market' its way to success, while relying on the rivers of golden ink to keep it afloat.

HP believed that innovation could be purchased. It outsourced design and development. It hollowed out the core of the original HP.

Not one HP product is a category leader (except ink). All the PC desktops, laptops, servers are very average and the corporate world knows this. They just ask HP. Dell, Acer and Lenovo in each couple of years and pick the most cost effective products for a period.

Now the juggernaut is in decline. How does HP stop the decline when it has 'cultured out' innovation.

Meanwhile the Executive Team rearranges the deck chairs to make the printer group part of the PC group so next time they need to report performance the shareholders won't need to be informed about bad things are getting.

Too bad. HP was once a great company - Now it is in the hands of the MBAs so unless something dramatic happens, IMHO, I think it is terminal.
post #24 of 130
When HP starts to innovate and actually deliver better products...NOT just cheap...they got a long way to catch up or Apple can start sinking like a ship with these rumors of smaller ipad or larger iphone.
post #25 of 130
Why isn't HP more like Apple? Hmmm, could it be because they keep hiring CEOs like Carly Fiorina and Meg Whitman? Or because they cater to the Wal-Marts of the world by providing low quality crap with the company name proudly plastered all over it? Bloated product line?
post #26 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fotoformat View Post

What a grim smile... are those her upper or lower teeth?

The proportions of her face are hurting my brain.
post #27 of 130
IMO In order to be a CEO at any Tech company they should take the candidate to the R & D labs, show him/her whatever they have and are working on, take a look at the patents the company holds and he/she should come up with an idea of a product that anyone who try it wants it. Doesn't matter if is not revolutionary or innovative (that would be a plus) but it has to be desirable, useful and of great quality.
HP has the resources to get back in track but lately it seems that their problems are caused by the lack of vision and creativity.
I doubt they will sink anytime soon but under a good management they would be much better.
post #28 of 130
HP died when they spun off Agilent. The heart and soul of HP went to Agilent. I wish the names had been reversed. HP staying the test & measurement company with some other name becoming the PC & printer company.

That being said, HP is still big enough to have some serious R&D chops. But I don't think they have the vision to turn the R&D into insanely great products.

- Jasen.
post #29 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Fix View Post

I remember once when HP made fun of Apple for giving tours of Jobs' garage. Now Apple is building a new campus on land that was once owned by HP.

Is that not ironic.
post #30 of 130
I personally think the answer is very simple.

HP CEO DOES NOT EQUAL STEVE JOBS (Or TIM COOK).
post #31 of 130
when HP spun off the equipment division... that was the beginning if the end of the apple-like HP... does HP sell anything that defines an era? ... HP made the first frequency generator... and the frequency counter with the classic nixie tubes (the vacuum tubes with the numbers the glow invdivually) mad scientist

Today their pro division is ok, but really why can't they produce a high-quantity printer that costs 200 dollars and can print 10000 pages on one ink cartiridge for a penny a page in ink cost.... (not laser)


or just increase the size of the cartridges by 4 and half the price of them...

or just make the cartridges refillable at home... or , or , or
they could remain as they are, and exist... one does not have the grow at the expense of crappy products.
post #32 of 130
Apple is Apple because of Steve Jobs, his Vision and his ability to hire great people. Nuff Said.
post #33 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sipadan View Post

Captain, isn't that an iceberg coming by starboard?

no, I think the question is "should we straighten up the deck chairs?"
post #34 of 130
HP is a Microsoft clone maker. There is no way to innovate; there is nothing to differentiate their products with. They do what all the other clone makers do, race to the bottom in pricing and create complicated and confusing product lines around spec sheets to try and squeeze out a few more pennies from confused customers.

HP had a shot with the Palm OS to actually be innovative and break free from the Microsoft cloner market. but they killed that. No cloner will ever be like Apple while they are a slave to Microsoft for the heart of the computers/phones/tablets.
post #35 of 130
(snipped)

"Meg couldn't lead a creative, highly driven engineering vision to fruition due to having none of these qualities in her."

The author here has hit the nail on the head. Technology leaders have disappeared to be replaced by Harvard MBA's and bean counters.
post #36 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by nicroma View Post

The proportions of her face are hurting my brain.

how 'bout you posting a pic of your puss?
post #37 of 130
because they keep putting people like her in charge...
post #38 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by bullhead View Post

HP is a Microsoft clone maker. There is no way to innovate; there is nothing to differentiate their products with. They do what all the other clone makers do, race to the bottom in pricing and create complicated and confusing product lines around spec sheets to try and squeeze out a few more pennies from confused customers.

HP had a shot with the Palm OS to actually be innovative and break free from the Microsoft cloner market. but they killed that. No cloner will ever be like Apple while they are a slave to Microsoft for the heart of the computers/phones/tablets.


Bingo! +1

It's the hardware/software combination that makes Apple so great. HP has no control over the software. They install whatever Microsoft supplies them with. They have no say in the matter other than to make sure their hardware runs Microsoft software without issues.

This brings up the recent reports about Android developers losing interest because of fragmentation. In this case you have both the hardware and software being modfied, tweaked, altered, customized and wind up with a jumbled mess. Apple absolutely made the right decision to demand total control of the hardware/software from the carriers.

Unless you have total control you can't really innovate. You are at the mercy of whomever your partner is.
post #39 of 130
This is too easy, HP isn't in love with their products.
Just say no to MacMall.  They don't honor their promotions and won't respond to customer inquiries.  There are better retailers out there.
Reply
Just say no to MacMall.  They don't honor their promotions and won't respond to customer inquiries.  There are better retailers out there.
Reply
post #40 of 130
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbtinc View Post

no, I think the question is "should we straighten up the deck chairs?"

They just announced some deck chair straightening a couple of days ago, didn't they? (Sorry, I meant business unit re-org.)

So they're not going to acquire disruptive technology (which Apple does do - from NeXT to iTunes to Siri...) AND they got rid of the in-house capability to develop things. Yep, what they really need is another shuffling of management/org charts, that should fix everything!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: General Discussion
AppleInsider › Forums › General › General Discussion › HP shareholders question why company isn't more like Apple