Earlier this week, HP and Compaq began trading as one on the NYSE. The stock symbol merger came with few answers to the fate of the multiple product lines for each company. Really what we care about, what s the deal with the Jornada and the iPAQ? Well, now we know. All the new PDA s will be HP iPAQ s. Well true, it doesn t exactly roll off of the tongue, but it seems to me that HP was smart to leverage the iPAQ branding.
“We’re not keeping both, we’re keeping one,” said Michael Capellas, former Compaq CEO and HP’s new president.
In the second quarter of this year, Compaq came in second in total market share and HP finished a lagging sixth. In an effort to maintain some level of continuity for existing owners of both units, they decided to merge the names, and theoretically, the best technologies of each. Compaq held a narrow lead over Handspring but with waning demand for the Treo and the power of the combined companies, HP should be firmly entrenched in that number two spot for quite some time.
This announcement also drastically impacts the new PDA announcements that have leaked out of the HP camp over the past few weeks. The 574/5 is currently being delayed a bit due in part to supply issues. The integrated 928 which was due in Europe this summer and the US in the fourth quarter is now being totally re-evaluated. I m sure they won t scrap the plan totally, I just think they want to be sure to get it right. There s very little room for error with PDA s, especially with newcomers like Toshiba, starting to produce very nice units.
As for discontinuing units, the following will meet their ends within the next six months:
HP will continue to sell the iPAQ 3800 series as-is and will also sell the HP 720, until the new unit is released.