Wednesday, May 06, 2009

More on HP's (NYSE HPQ) CloudPrint

Business Week writer Aaron Ricadela has an interesting background piece ("HP's CloudPrint Heads into BlackBerrys") on the Monday HP (NYSE HPQ) announcement with Research in Motion (CSE RIM). It's a very upbeat account of the development of the CloudPrint service, which I've covered here since its initial announcement several years ago, and mentioned in a May 4th post covering the HP/RIM deal. (See "HP (NYSE HPQ), RIM announce alliance -- includes CloudPrint for BlackBerry".)

Ricadela's account focuses on the revamped HP Labs (HPL) and uses CloudPrint as a proof point that the legendary HPL has the ongoing ability to come up with big, important innovations. Actually, at least in CloudPrint's case, maybe not so much on the "big", at least for now, but certainly the value of in-house innovation can't be understated. The passage quoting Shaw Wu of Kaufman Brothers gets to the heart of it:

Shaw Wu, a senior analyst at Kaufman Brothers , notes that while licensing revenue from products like CloudPrint is a drop in the bucket for a company with $118 billion in annual sales, technologies that emerge from HP Labs can give the company advantages in PCs, printing, and other key markets. "If they're able to out-engineer Dell (DELL) and Acer, not only does it drive out costs, but they can change their strategy," he says.

Looking at the power of the story, my Google News Search index for "CloudPrint BlackBerry" is coming up with about 800 hits this afternoon (May 6th, two days after the initial release), which is a great number for a printing story. And it proves the lesson -- team up with something sexy, like Mobile Phones, to get the buzz back in printing. And Tweets? They are aplenty! A Twitter search yields NUMEROUS tweets referring to the announcement, but aside from a few valuable links, what can really be said in 140 characters?

And back to the Business Week story? Just one little bone to pick. Hey it's HP -- did you really have to pull a printer out of the trash for the demo?

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