HP is making a major push for the mobile market, the company has revealed in an exclusive interview with vnunet.com.
David Wright, vice president of HP's Personal Systems Group, explained that the company would be launching mobile products and services in the coming months that will strengthen its mobile offerings. These include 10 newly developed laptops for the enterprise market.
Wright also promised a GPS-enabled iPaq, and partnerships with mobile companies including Nokia.
"HP isn't just about the PC element; we can cover the front and back end as well," he said. "Mobility is happening now. In the past, security worries and other factors have slowed uptake but these are no longer holding things back."
Of the 10 new laptops, seven are for the UK market. They are built around Intel's Sonoma platform and are the first to be designed by the company since its integration with Compaq was completed back in 2001.
By the third quarter of this year all HP laptops will be based on the Sonoma chipset, which is the successor to Intel's popular Centrino platform.
Common features through the range include shock resistant hard drives, partitioned back-up areas for data recovery, and an add-on battery that fits every model and allows more than four hours of extra life.
The units will also ship with light sensors built into the fascia that raise and lower the screen brightness to suit ambient conditions.
"We're the first ones to have this," said Wright. "Other manufacturers use function keys to adjust brightness, as do we, but the automatic system should add more battery life without the user needing to think about it."
UK companies will be unable to buy HP's tc4200 tablet PC, due out in the US in April. Wright explained that, while certain global customers in Europe could make special orders, low demand meant that HP's existing tablet, the tc1100, will be the company's only European model until the second half of 2006.
HP said it will unveil the iPaq Messenger at the 3GSM World Congress later this month, which will integrate Edge mobile data technology and a GPS navigation system into an iPaq body. The device will also have a built-in keyboard and will be integrated with Microsoft Outlook and Exchange.
Finally HP will be forming alliances to integrate its products with those of other vendors. The GPS maps for the iPaq come from TomTom, the back-up system comes in part from Altiris, and a 60-day version of Norton antivirus in bundled with all models.
A deal with Nokia will see the two companies researching form automation. The plan is to adapt paper forms for cross-platform mobile use for markets like healthcare or finance.
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