Apotheker sees webOS as no threat to Microsoft, complimentary to Windows [video] | webOS Nation

Apotheker sees webOS as no threat to Microsoft, complimentary to Windows [video]

by Riz Parvez Mon, 25 Apr 2011 10:34 pm EDT

Earlier today, Fortune Magazine Editor-At-Large Adam Lashinsky published an extensive interview with HP CEO Leo Apotheker where they discussed everything from Apotheker’s take on the recent management shake-ups at HP to his perspective on webOS competing with Android and iOS in both consumer and enterprise. One of the major topics Lashinsky focused on during his interview was the strength of the relationship with Microsoft, and how HP’s decision to enter the mobile competition with webOS may impact that. Read on for Apotheker's take on the situation (with video) after the break

Apotheker didn’t mince words in his assessment of the situation, “It's not a threat at all... Microsoft doesn't view it as a threat, and we don't intend it to be a threat. Future PCs will be running Windows, whatever version, and they will also be running WebOS--it's not a threat, it's complimentary. Microsoft knows about WebOS, we know what they want to do. It's a great partnership and I look forward to continuing that partnership in the future.”

Lashinsky smartly followed-up on that response by noting that if the future of computing was mobile, and that mobile vision for HP was webOS rather than a Microsoft, that could be seen as a threat to them.

Interestingly, Apotheker’s response was to note that his view of the future of computing was one of heterogeneous connectivity, where end users wouldn’t have to be tied entirely into one system or the other. He went on to imagine a world where the cloud might have Microsoft software on it and webOS devices accessed it, or vice-versa. One can only speculate as to what this vice-versa scenario might be, but it certainly suggests that HP is continuing to think big with it’s new OS. He added that, “People want choice, people are living in the heterogeneous world, and we want to support that, and WebOS will support heterogeneity.”

Apotheker also spoke about the the complementary role webOS could play in enhancing the Windows PC experience, including adopting the webOS UI, accessing the App Catalog, and using Synergy for updating across calendars and devices at once. Apotheker also hinted that there was more to come with additional features being added to webOS in the future, though it was “a little bit too early,” for him to elaborate on that any further of course.

Finally, in a rather telling exchange, Apotheker was asked why not just have webOS a complement to Windows on the TouchPad as well. Apotheker noted, “At the end of the day, a tablet is still not a PC, so there's only so much you can cram into a tablet.”

Perhaps this was a lesson HP learned firsthand with the Slate led them to webOS in the first place.

All told, this interview not only speaks to HP’s ideas on innovating in the mobile space, but also to the multifaceted nature of their business and how far the ripple effect of their purchase of Palm last year has the potential to go.

Source: Fortune; Thanks, Casey!