HP/COMPAQ: HP unveils product road map

Compaq's Tru64 Unix operating system and Hewlett-Packard's Netserver IA-32 servers, Jornada handhelds and Omnibook notebooks are among the products being phased out as a result of HP's acquisition of Compaq, the companies said Tuesday as they unveiled the product road map of the new HP.

"Where there's a tough call, we do what our customers would want us to do," HP Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Carly Fiorina said during a press conference in Cupertino, California.

Joined onstage by HP executives including President Michael Capellas, Fiorina reiterated the merger's rationales and goals. HP is now the largest consumer IT company in the world, and the largest IT provider for small and medium businesses, she said.

While the new HP promptly unveiled its product roadmap, details about the 15,000 positions it plans to cut are still pending. HP aims to make the bulk of the cuts within the next six to nine months, Fiorina said. She noted that the company will also be increasing its headcount in some areas, citing imaging and printing, and professional services as two units in which HP may be hiring.

Bob Wayman, chief financial officer at HP, said the company plans to stick to its previously announced projection of 15,000 layoffs.

HP will now be the master brand for all of the merged companies' products, but the Compaq brand will be kept alive in the PC portfolio.

All of HP's professional desktop and notebook products will migrate to the Compaq brand in the next nine to 12 months, HP said. The HP Vectra line will be phased out, as will HP's Omnibook products. HP's e-pc products will survive and continue being sold under the HP name, the company said.

Compaq's Presario and HP's Pavilion line of consumer PCs will compete side by side in countries in which both are strong, HP said, although only one line will be offered in some regions. HP plans to focus on the two brands' individual strengths, touting Compaq's wireless and home networking features and HP's digital imaging tools.

Compaq's popular iPaq Pocket PC will be renamed the HP iPaq Pocket PC, while HP's own Jornada handheld line will be phased out. The Compaq iPaq Blackberry will be retained, under the HP name.

Compaq's Tru64 Unix operating system will be eliminated in favor of HP's HP-UX, which will incorporate some Tru64 features. HP-UX's larger installed base and broader ISV (independent software vendor) network led to the decision, HP said.

Fiorina maintained her sense of humor throughout the press conference, ending with a quip on the future of Compaq-sponsored sports arenas in San Jose, California and Houston.

"It's not going to be called the Fiorina," she said of San Jose's Compaq Center. "It is going to be the HP Pavilion." Fiorina said Houston's Compaq Center will also likely be named the Pavilion - also a brand of HP's PC line.

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