*NEWS*THE END USER:HP SHIFTS STRATEGIES !

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*NEWS*THE END USER:HP SHIFTS STRATEGIES !

 user 2007-10-22 at 11:18:00 am Views: 43
  • #18983

    The End User: Hewlett-Packard shifts strategy on printers
     October , 2007 PARIS: When we think about printing, we normally call to mind printers. Vyomesh Joshi, on the other hand, has a vision for Version 2.0 of printing that has more to do with lifestyle than beige boxes.
    Joshi, known widely in the industry as VJ, is executive vice president of Hewlett-Packard’s printing and imaging division, a $26 billion business that accounts for 27 percent of HP’s sales and 40 percent of its profit – a ratio that comes as no surprise for us consumers of high-priced inkjet cartridges.

    As the global market leader in both inkjet printers and laserjets, HP’s shifts in strategy bear watching.For the past two months, HP has been pushing the idea that there is not only a Web 2.0, but a Print 2.0 to go along with it.This is Joshi’s effort to ally HP with the blog-video-social scene that today’s teenage surfers have made of the Internet.Think about all the photos and videos that populate YouTube, DailyMotion and the millions of personal pages on Facebook and MySpace. Joshi sees them all as future printouts.Another way to look at the difference between Print 1.0 and 2.0 is this: The 60 million printers HP is selling this year account for about 46 percent of the total market, but those printers account for only 1.6 percent of pages printed.”There are billions of photos being shared,” Joshi said in a recent interview from London. “But there’s not a simple way to print them.”Joshi wants to take Hewlett-Packard’s Web-based printing company, Snapfish, and extend its model of online services to all of its other print markets, like businesses, signs and professional publications, as well as Internet community sites.”We want to integrate printing into social networking behavior,” he said.
    HP last month agreed to a deal with Flickr, Yahoo’s photo-sharing site, to be the underlying printing service there, and it has been talking to MySpace and Facebook about similar partnerships, Joshi said.HP also has developed a small application, or “widget,” that would highlight and print key information from Web sites, and it plans to make that widely available to software and Internet-site developers.The goal is a kind of “yearbook” printing utility.Joshi sees a print icon on every shared Web page or blog that would give a user what he called a “template-based experience.”"You could, say, put all the pictures of this person in one collage, or take all the pictures of me and this friend and put them in another,” he said.”My two daughters go to the University of California at Berkeley. If they could print out all the friends they had during the year, all of the parties they went to, that could be a very powerful way to document and chronicle their social connections during their year at Berkeley.”Likewise, HP is creating widgets for blog sites so that you don’t have to print 150 pages of people’s entries and comments when all you want is one. The company has started working with the blog BoingBoing.But despite its dominance in printers, HP is coming from behind on the Internet. Snapfish, by some estimates, is No. 3 in the market and is just now entering the Asia-Pacific region. Shutterfly and Kodak’s Easyshare Gallery are ahead.Joshi sees high value in exposing today’s teen surfers to the HP brand and trying to capture their loyalty and keep it well into their business years.That’s why he wants to spread the HP widgetry widely across the Web and drive page-printing growth.What about Print 3.0? There, Joshi sees three-dimensional printing, printers that can “print” actual objects rather than pushing paper.He also sees an increasing role for HP as a service provider between the advertiser and retailer, “the link between the virtual and physical worlds.”But Hewlett-Packard will continue to rely on its roots in Print 1.0.”Don’t underestimate the power of paper,” Joshi said. “It’s the cheapest kind of storage you can find.”