Microsoft took a big risk with Windows 8 and it’s backfiring

“Hewlett-Packard now sees Microsoft as a competitor,” Sam Mattera writes for The Motley Fool. “For years, Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft had a strong partnership — but evidently, those days are over.”

“The widespread backlash to Windows 8, combined with Microsoft’s decision to release its own, competing hardware, has alienated Hewlett-Packard,” Mattera writes. “And while Microsoft looks to be on the verge of losing one of its longtime partners, Google is gaining one — Hewlett-Packard has eagerly embraced both of Google’s operating systems”

“But more important than the Windows redesign was Microsoft’s decision to start making its own devices,” Mattera writes. “Although HP has to compete against other Android manufacturers, most notably Samsung, it doesn’t have to compete with the company that actually makes the operating system — besides its Nexus devices (which are actually made by other companies) and its overpowered Chromebook Pixel, Google is not a major player in the hardware space… Research firm Gartner predicts that, by 2017, Google’s Android will have effectively replaced Windows. With Microsoft’s former partners switching sides, that prediction seems destined to come true.”

Read more in the full article here.

43 Comments

    1. You are so wise and well spoken, I LOVE the way you use caps to get your point across. You know what? YOU should set up your own BLOG, because what you have to say is SOOO important I’m sure EVERYONE on the interweb is going to want to sit at your virtual feet and listen awestruck to your every WORD. PLEASE enlighten us some more.

  1. I’m confused. How does HP supposedly have to worry about Microsoft, but not Google? Microsoft isn’t selling their hardware very well at all and just took a $900M write-down on unsold units), but that’s a strained relationship. Yet, somehow HP isn’t worried about Google, who is selling the crap out of their hardware in the mobile and tablet space and competing with their OEMs?

    Sorry, these investment sites are just as clueless and/or full of crap when they write about Microsoft or Google as they are when they write about Apple.

    1. Google isn’t selling much hardware either; Google’s hardware is made by others anyway. HP’s hardware competitors are the same as they were before. Where it did have a partner, though (MS), it now has another competitor, which is what sent them into Google’s arms. Google as a hardware competitor to HP has been pretty much off the radar (the few Nexus phones / tablets, and a few awkward Chromebooks are insignificant competition). This hasn’t changed and is unlikely to change (Google has no incentive to aggressively push their own hardware, especially if they get a hardware partner such as HP). For HP, the equation is simpler with Google as a partner.

      MS isn’t done selling hardware. Unless the next CEO completely changes direction, MS will continue to burn money on future Surfaces until they get X-box type results from it. This is what HP doesn’t like in this relationship, and that’s why they prefer Google.

          1. And neither of those are Motorola Mobility devices, such as the Droid RAZR MAXX or the Moto-X. Yes, Google Nexus devices are produced by others, but Motorola Mobility devices are produced by a company that is owned by Google.

        1. HP is not making cellphones. It is not (yet) in the mobile phone market, so Motorola Mobility is not a competitor. HP makes desktop computers (among other things), and it is there that MS started competing with their hardware products (Surface).

          1. I’m comparing like things. The article states that Google is not in competition with the people who make the devices that run its Operating Systems (ChromeOS and Android). That is untrue, because Google is in direct competition with the handset makers that use its Android operating system, because it produces its own hardware under Motorola Mobility.

            Just because Google farms out its Chromebook production to other companies does NOT mean you can’t compare Google in regards to Android and Windows in regards to Windows 8 and Windows RT.

      1. There is only one thing that made the X-Box popular, the Kinect. I haven’t heard much about this lately. Unless the Surface has a “Kinect” add-on that makes it a must have device then it’s never going to be competition for anyone.

        With HP making Chrome and Android devices they are just throwing mud at the walls to see what sticks. HP is not going to stop making Windows desktops/laptops any time soon.

        What will happen to the X-Box when LG releases its game controller adapter for the iPhone and Apple releases new Apple TV with an A7 and 64 bit games? I’m hearing a low rumple in the game console market.

      2. Well one could say that Microsofts phones are made by Nokia even if they have recently bought the operation while Motorola is a potential big builder for Google. There is nothing to say that Google wont make as many of its own devices as Microsoft certainly outside of desktops, they certainly do have the impetus to do so when you consider Samsungs’ stranglehold on Android.
        Also how is Google going to replace MS for HP outside of mobile there is no chance in the forseeble future that Google will replace Windows on the desktop so this all seems rather confusing statements from Gartner.
        For HP this is more of between a rock and a hard place and they are trying to play in both sides court. After all they tried to escape MS before cosying up to Apple and then buying their own OS but blew both. They are simply trying to work out a future on the hoof but as their business is so wrapped up in Windows especially the heavy end I am not sure that they have much of a future jumping on the Android front. Perhaps Chrome might give them an opportunity but not sure anyone can predict the future of that manoeuvre as yet. To paraphrase Stevie B ‘I don’t like their future, I don’t like it a lot’.

  2. This may be a great time for MS start thinking to go at it Mac style in the way it sells computers, getting rid of OEMs. I mean since they are already started copying them when it comes to mobile..

  3. “Although HP has to compete against other Android manufacturers, most notably Samsung, it doesn’t have to compete with the company that actually makes the operating system ”

    Oh really? First of all, Google owns Motorola’s phone division. So if HP were ever thinking of making smart phones, they would be competing DIRECTLY with Google (not to mention the Nexus).

    Second, is HP SERIOUSLY thinking about abandoning Windows to sell PCs with the Chrome OS? Really? That will go down well….. NOT!

    None this makes ANY sense. Maybe it’s just hype by HP to get a better deal with Micro$oft. After all, MS doesn’t really sell any full desktop or laptop computers (only tablets) which don’t (at least yet) seem to be hurting HP all that much…

      1. Yes, it’s a completely ridiculous comparison. Windows 8 fundamentally changed some basic methods of interaction with the OS and frustrated many users. iOS 7 is primarily a visual refresh, it’s been met with almost universally positive reviews. Only a very vocal minority of whiners dislike it, and they seem to act like iOS 7 was somehow perfect.

  4. Very interesting. Microsoft understands that to compete you have to control the entire stack, wondering why HP can’t understand that? Certainly Linux, reskinned by HP, could work. Getting into bed with Google will only leave HP feeling the same the morning after Google as it did the morning after Microsoft.

    1. HP already had the perfect opportunity to find its place in the new marketplace with WebOS, yet spectacularly blew it. All they have now is steadily declining corporate mindshare and their mainstay business, printing.

      1. Totally. If they had kept WebOS on phones, added it to their printers, and whipped up a WebOS office suite, they’d be an enterprise hybrid of Microsoft & Google today.

  5. In terms of desktop environment computing, if you’re not a Mac user, and not one of the minority using Linux/Chrome/etc and are thus willing to write off all MS products, then the only option is Windows. People migrating from Windows to Mac doesn’t help them, and the few people happy to use alternatives are probably going to buy some custom model, niche manufacturer, or chrome machine. Ultimately, windows users are HP’s only market. They’ve thrown in their lot with MS and now their fate is directly linked to whatever success or failure MS has. MS has the advantage in that adding hardware is possible for them, adding an OS with software is nigh on impossible for HP or anyone else – at least not for a number of years and spending a lot of money. Apple had the advantage with OS X of having existing Mac users and an overlap with the classic environment.

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