The consumerization of IT

STILL TALKING - Enrico Miguel T. Subido -

A frequently used phrase at the recently concluded “2012 HP Global Influencer Summit” in Shanghai, China was the “consumerization of IT.” This trend explains that information technology (IT) is becoming heavily influenced by consumers, affecting the way technology enters the marketplace. In the past, these new forms of technology would flow down from large businesses first, then to the consumer. The consumerization of IT reverses this model where, nowadays, the consumer market often gets hold of said technology before it even enters the enterprise.

“We see high level executives wanting thin, light, and stylish designs. Typically those things don’t snap into an enterprise environment very well. They’re challenged by things like security, ‘is your data protected,’ ‘can you manage that product,’ ‘what kind of connectivity do I have?’ We’re taking that input and if there’s customer desire for those attributes, what can we do to the product?”

James Mouton, senior vice president of HP’s Desktop Organization, Personal Systems Group had this to say about the most significant change in the way HP is going to run its business. Now paying more attention to the needs of the customers, HP is living up to its motto for 2012: “Making Technology Work for You.”

The “Global Influencer Summit” was not only informative as far as the HP’s new directives are concerned, but also a way to showcase the new products in the HP stable. The two-day affair involved more than 80 products from HP’s printers and personal systems (PPS) division, with items from both consumer and business segments. These included the HP Envy Spectre XT together with new HP Envy Ultrabooks in 14 and 15.6-inch form factor, as well as the Photosmart 5520 E-All-in-One printer. The OfficeJet 150 Mobile All-in-One Printer, Elitebook Folio 9470m Ultrabook, EliteBook 2170p and LaserJet Pro M425 Multi-Function Printer — all targeted for business market, also made debuts at the Summit.

Anya Ayoung-Chee fashion designer, Miss Trinidad and Tobago Universe 2009, winner of Project Runway Season 9, and user of HP solutions poses with designs from her latest collection.

But aside from just showcasing the thin, light, and shiny gadgets, participants were also given the chance to get a better understanding of the HP philosophy and how this translates into their products. By means of grouped “breakout sessions,” members were given the chance to get up close and personal with the HP brand. Different themed stations such as “Style Meets Function,” “Tools of the Trade,” “Thin And Light,” “All In One,” “Quality and Reliability,” and “Print Relevance” all made understanding the brand that much simpler.

I enjoyed “Quality and Reliability,” a space was set up to look like Qs lab from a James Bond flick. Here, laptops were tested in extreme heat, cold, and were opened and closed by a machine hundreds of thousands of times just to demonstrate that the products were of the highest build quality. Another one I found cool was the “Print Relevance” section. Here, the presenters explained that a social experiment was conducted in the USA, India, and Singapore, where all things that were printed (from printed clothes to medicine labels) were completely removed in a given space for a week — just to illustrate how print is still significant and that, indeed, print is not dead.

The Summit received a special visit from HP president and CEO Meg Whitman, who gave a speech about HP continuing to innovate in the areas of servers and networking, cloud computing, software investment, and security and information management. She also touched on streamlining and restructuring the HP Personal Systems Group (PSG) and HP Imaging and Printing Group (IPG.)

James Mouton, senior vice president of HP’s Desktop Organization, Personal Systems Group

It’s good that Whitman feels confident in her new position. She truly believes in the brand, in the products, and in the skilled individuals who make up the company. In her keynote speech, Whitman said: “One of the joys that I have found about coming to HP is that commitment to fantastic product engineering is still very much alive at HP. And I think you’ve seen that from the show today and from some of the speakers.”

She also added what sounded like a canned spiel, something that’s written on the palms of all company presidents and CEOs when they have to give such speeches: “We are committed to bringing the most innovative, highest quality products, services, and solutions to all of our customers. And we are fully committed to our PC and printing businesses.” After the great expo, the product demos, the speeches, presentations, all the inside looks, and all the controversial questions asked, somehow that statement doesn’t sound all that scripted.

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For more information about HP and their products visit www.hp.com

If you are interested in the social experiment that I mentioned in the article, watch out for the documentary “7 Days Without Print.” It premieres at the Guggenheim Museum on June 14, and should be available somewhere on the Net soon after that.

Ryan Friedlinghaus, CEO of The World Famous West Coast Customs, explains to Jim Zafarana of HP’s Commercial Solutions how this HP printer makes his job easier.

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Email me at [email protected]

The Glass Museum in Shanghai, where various objets d’art all made of glass are displayed, and the venue for the culmination dinner and closing presentation.






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