HP PC chief Todd Bradley calls post-PC era claims "just wrong" [irony alert] | webOS Nation

HP PC chief Todd Bradley calls post-PC era claims "just wrong" [irony alert] 27

by Derek Kessler Thu, 20 Sep 2012 6:14 pm EDT

HP PC chief Todd Bradley calls post-PC era claims

If you were to turn back the calendar eighteen months, you would find yourself in March 2011. It was a heady time for the webOS community. The Pre3, Veer, and TouchPad had been announced just a month earlier, but none of the three were yet available to the public. So while we waited, the head honchos of HP were out in full force, touting the upcoming webOS tablet (and occasionally mentioning the smartphones too). HP recognized that they needed a tablet, a 'post-PC' device, if you will, not just to compete with Apple's iPad, but to have something ready for when HP's computer business wasn't what people wanted anymore.'

One of those HP honchos was none other than Todd Bradley, then the Executive Vice President in charge of the computer-making and webOS Global Business Unit-containing Personal Systems Group. Bradley had experience in mobile, having been CEO of PalmOne back in the day. As such, his word carried weight, and at least publicly he was all-in on webOS. Said Bradley at one point, "We're totally focused on the tablet market; totally focused on enabling that with webOS".

But if you were to replay that quote for Mr. Bradley today (now head of the merged Printing and Personal Systems division), he'd likely scoff. In an interview with PCWorld this week, Bradley responded to a question about technology being in the 'post-PC era' as such: "Look, it’s just wrong. Just think of the decision when your child is going off to college. What’s a requirement? A PC. Or you run a business and need your employees to be productive. You need a PC. The size of the global PC business is huge, and I think some people are trying to be dramatic. That said, there is a growing role for tablets, and we will absolutely be a significant force in that space."

With all that tablets are capable of these days, it's actually perfectly conceivable for somebody to replace their personal computer with a tablet. It's not for everybody, at least not yet, but more and more people are making that switch. A generation is growing up today where tablets will be considered by and large the only computer that they need when they hit the age where they can buy their own computing devices. The 'post-PC era' doesn't completely obviate the PC, but it is on a downward trend, and HP was right to buy Palm to help set themselves up for the future. You know, a future where HP stays committed to their multi-billion investment and doesn't dump it when things don't go as awesomely as you'd hoped.

As for HP's position in the "growing role for tablets", they've got their new Mobility Global Business Unit and an upcoming Windows 8 tablet. Oh, and Open webOS too, not that you'd know it if you talked to anybody outside of the webOS GBU.

Source: PCWorld; Via: The Verge



You go into some of these suburbs in Silicon Valley, and like a lot of small towns in California, the computers have been trending down for years and they have nothing to replace them. And it's not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to desktops or printers or antipathy to devices that aren't like theirs or anti-mobile sentiment or anti-tablet sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.

I live in the suburbs in Silicon Valley, have for 6 years now. I haven't seen any kind of decline in PCs. Maybe at the cafes you see people using a tablet instead of a laptop. That's simply because it's more portable. If you ask the person if they own a laptop or desktop, I bet 99 out of 100 say, "Yes I do." Some of them probably have multiples.

I have five PCs (one desktop, one an HTPC for Windows Media Center, and two full-size laptops, and a netbook). I also have a pair of TouchPads (my phone is Pre 3). I think the point that Bradley is making is that PCs aren't going away, people still need them.

Maybe people don't need to upgrade them as often which would be a cause for the downtrend in sales. Also, a down economy may be a cause for people to push upgrades to the future. Let's face it, tablets and smartphones are new and cool and can be seen as fashion accessories in some cases, so people are probably focusing more of their budgets there.

"Maybe people don't need to upgrade them as often which would be a cause for the downtrend in sales."


People cling to desktops and printers because sometimes you need a large, full, tactile keyboard to type. Sometimes you gotta have a hard copy of a document. I don't think it's because of some kind of rebellious attitude towards mobile.

Mobile is convenient, nothing more. It's revolutionized how I connect when I'm not at home. First thing that happens when I get home- my mobile gets dropped on the charger and I boot up my PC. Mobiles will supplant PCs when they become as capable. And that's the day when mobile devices will simply become PCs.

Might mobile devices take over marketshare from traditional PCs? Sure. Should we call that the "Post-PC era?" Well, sure. It doesn't really matter. Bradley, Apple, MobileNations, and everyone else in this debate are just bickering over semantics. Mobile's not going away. PCs aren't going away.

Love the technopolitico humor Derek! 

Derek, how dare you call me a bitter clinger. Where's your certification? I bet you aren't even Microsoft certified, which would disqualify you from writing about PCs! Don't tread on my increasingly outmoded technology! You'll have my desktop when you pry it from my cold, dead hands! Er, desk! YOU KNOW WHAT I MEAN!

PCs won't be replaced in households, but their role will change. People will be using them more as servers because cloud computing is limited by data transfer costs more than anything.

Besides, taking into account price/performance, laptops are still a better deal than tablets at the moment


HP can also make em' double the ram to 512. And EVEN if it DOUBLES the price, $50 is WAYYYYYYYY more less than what they built the TouchPad for!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!



EDIT: Obviously it'll need an SD card too, but with OEM pricing, even without it. 16gb is as cheap as idk ONE picture on original Time-Zero film ? no, it's cheaper.

hey man, stop shouting


c'mon! Derek! If i write an article about that, will you CONSIDER publishing it????

Probably not if it's saturated with capital letters and extraneous punctuation marks.

But it's an interesting idea. I'm not sure how well the Raspberry Pi board fits with a tablet form factor -- probably not very well. Also, I imagine the most expensive (and arguably most important) part of a tablet is the screen, so the cost savings would not be as dramatic as simply original cost - (cost of Raspberry Pi + cost of SD card). Heck, it would almost certainly have to include the cost of at least a WiFi radio ...

If you, or anyone were to write an article about building a low-cost tablet, the best place to start is here: http://www.isuppli.com/Teardowns/News/pages/Low-End-Google-Nexus-7-Carries-$157-BOM-Teardown-Reveals.aspx

This shows that the original Amazon Fire (which has worse specs than the TouchPad) would cost $140 to manufacture as of July: http://www.isuppli.com/Teardowns/News/pages/Low-End-Google-Nexus-7-Carries-$157-BOM-Teardown-Reveals.aspx

At $160, they could make Nexus 7-type hardware for a webOS Tablet.

If you want to write an article about a cheap tablet, the Raspberry Pi shouldn't be the basis.

Been a palm user since 2005! ;) the original palm zire. ahhh the good ol' days of palmos.

The stories here are becoming sadder and sadder...

I think that Bradley has a decent point. If I were HP I would be marketing on that. Ipads and Touchpads are nice but when I really need to get work done I go to my PC or laptop.

Hmmm...As the owner of a pc repair company, I have actually had a spike lately for repairs and new desktop systems. I tell people, tablets are cool and have their place, but are you going to do your homework and bills or photo editing while holding a 10' tablet? Why would you want to go to a smaller screen when you can have a comfy desk with a nice big screen? Pc's are not going away any time soon.

PC's have become appliances. Hardware evolution is slow and less important. Phones, tablets and TV's will slowly cut into the PC roles. The focus now is content. O/S upgrades, applications, internet service speed....this is where money and development is focused. PC's will likely get an extended lease on life as gaming consoles are set to become irrelevant as the next generation is set for release.

i read your post after posting mine. I could have saved some time and said " what Predog said" :)

I am an avid PC gamer.
PC hardware is at a turning point right now. Just waiting for the next-gen gaming consoles to come out. Then we will see some new hardware for PC's and a little bump in sales, but this could be the last line of traditional gaming consoles, with mobile gaming popularity, the future of gaming consoles will evolve into a more robust mobile platform. Microsoft knows they cannot tie you to your living room TV, or PC monitor for much longer.
I love PC hardware, but without software/games to push us forward, we are becoming dinosaurs in the home environment.

Listen up HP and Microsoft. Team up and upgrade the touchpad with dual core processor and Windows8. Sell it for 400 bucks and it will sell like hotcakes. Offer the upgrade to existing TP owners and everyone will be happy.

The touchpad already has a dual core proc

well I'm tossed up....there was a day when the laptop was the mobile device and when you got home and needed more power you booted up the desktop....now in days my laptop doesn't leave my desk helped by the fact that the battery died on me but never less history shows a trend from Room top...to Desktop....to laptop....and so on

to me my tablet is my mobile home device and my pre2 handles everything else when I'm on the go

that's my opinion

I haven't fired up a laptop (other than at work) in FOREVER. I use two desktops at home (one HTPC and one office computer with dual monitors), carry my TP daily and use it at least a lil bit every day. I don't see not owning a desktop any time soon.

Until we rely on something other than a keyboard for primary input, laptop is about a small as they get, with smaller just bein a compromise. Even linking keyboards to tablets and phones isn't really catching on. Everyone has varied needs. My #1 preference is a desktop with quad monitors. I carry a powerful phone, but if I want to do more than a quick social surf, out comes my 12.5" ultrabook, turning the phone into a hotspot. We've spent thirty years trying to eliminate typing from the routine, despite Nuance and Swype, it's still sitting tall in the saddle as the favored way to express one's self.

Maybe he's smokin' the same stuff as Leo....

tech geeks tend to think of a "post pc era" only in terms of whether they individually can, will, or may ever ditch their full computers for a tablet. They, however, tend to ignore the enormous enterprise market that does not have the same needs or standards for a computing device.

For a company in a highrise office buildings it's not always a positive to pay twice as much for a device and to have to risk the expense of replacing a devices that's going to suffer damage because unlike a desktop it's getting moved all over the place. For jobs with lots of writing you need the keyboard and all the desktop publishing software that is not as robust. For example, you go to a big law firm and they haven't replaced their computers with tablets because they need to write professionally. Not sure places that use computers as cash registers like my grocery stores want tablets for someone to steal or move. if you're in medical research labs like my father was i can't see how a tablet is needed in the lab. i'm not saying there's no benefit but not over the a pc. The pc has specials software. Someone would have to remake the software. My old company made a special software to do a specific computing task in windows vista. you can't just switch to a tablet without rewriting software and buying tablets for hundreds of people. Why? to do a job they can already do pretty cheaply with current devices.

A huge portion of the pc market is NOT some guy watching netflix or using twitter. I just think the idea that pcs are gonna go the way of 8-track tapes is premature and illogical.

SnotBoogie, thanks for redefining "tech geek".

15 years ago, people called me a tech geek, because I worked in the computer industry, gained a lot of knowledge and I liked what I was doing. Today, it's just "Oh, hey, look! The guy has a whateverpad and a smartphone. He must be one of those tech geeks..."

The truth is, not even 10 percent of those people know what's behind and in fact they don't even care. It's all about buying apps, do twitter, facebook and that's all what it takes to be a tech geek, today.

I like my webOS stuff, really. But when it comes to programming, writing letters, doing simple graphics or html stuff, even my Touchpad with the bluetooth keyboard connected is pretty useless. And that's why I will go on using "old-fashioned" computers with big screens, keyboard and mouse until my death.