HP has unveiled a series of products designed to extend communication, collaboration, networking and storage capabilities for small to medium sized businesses (SMBs).
The main offering is HP and Microsoft Unified Communication and Collaboration, which the company claimed will allow businesses to reduce collaboration costs by combining servers, storage, networking and software in one system.
HP has also introduced a Virtual Rooms tool that provides an interactive workplace for remote collaboration on documents, and an online service called 48Upper that allows IT staff to manage processes from a single source, the firm said.
The StorageWorks X1000 Network Storage System, meanwhile, offers twice the number of drivers of previous products in an effort to improve storage capacity.
Finally, the V1410 Switch has eight-, 16- and 24-port gigabit options that HP said will simplify how networks are built, managed and deployed by providing " plug and play" connectivity among client PCs, servers and storage devices.
HP has also created more services for customer support. HP Download Store offers six different pay-as-you-go support services, while the PC Helpdesk and Windows 7 Onsite Upgrade Service provide technical installation and operating system migration support.
Hugh Gibbs, an analyst with small business specialist AMI, believes that HP has positioned the new products well to meet the demands and requirements of SMBs in the current economic climate.
"Many SMBs are still being affected by the downturn, and understand that they need to get the maximum return for their investments in new technologies, such as the need to update network infrastructures and improve storage systems," he said.
"Furthermore, with increasing numbers of mobile workers, the ability to collaborate on documents or communicate remotely is growing too. Research we undertook found that 57 per cent of firms are looking at web conferencing tools to cut travel costs this year."
The announcements follow the news that HP is to shed 9,000 jobs globally as part of a drive to automate more of its datacentre processes.
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