Tag: HP

HP gathers legal Lynch Mob

The lynch-mob-21war of words between HP and the former owner of Autonomy, Michael Lynch has ended up in a court battle in the UK.

The maker of expensive printer ink has lodged a claim in London against Lynch and a former colleague for damages of about $5.1 billion over their management of Autonomy, the company it bought in 2011.

Lynch will counter sue, seeking $149 million for loss and damage caused by HP’s accusations.
Autonomy was supposed to be the $11.1 billion centrepiece of a move to becoming a more SAP style software organisation. But a year later HP wrote off three-quarters of the British company’s value, accusing Lynch and his colleagues of financial mismanagement.

HP filed a claim against Lynch, the co-founder of Autonomy, and Autonomy’s former finance director Sushovan Hussain in the Chancery Division of London’s High Court on Monday, alleging they engaged in fraudulent activities while executives at Autonomy.

“The lawsuit seeks damages from them of approximately $5.1 billion,” the spokeswoman added.
Lynch, speaking on behalf of Autonomy’s former management, has consistently denied any impropriety, saying the loss in value of the company was down to HP’s mismanagement.

HP’s case might have been weakened by the fact that Britain’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) said there was not enough evidence to secure a conviction of Autonomy’s former executives.

Former HP boss “90 percent sure” of presidential bid

carlyfiorinaFormer HP boss the winsome (and lose some) Carly Fiorina said the chances she would run for the US presidency in 2016 were “higher than 90 percent” and that she would announce her plans in late April to early May.

Fiorina said she could not yet announce the bid because she was working to establish her team and put together what she described as “the right support” and financial resources.

Fiorina was seen as a divisive figure at HP. Her wielding of the corporate axe made staff scared of losing their jobs. It is also not clear if HP ever did that well from her massive buy out of Compaq which left HP as the world’s largest hardware maker just in time for the economic rut which gutted PC sales.

In 2005, Fiorina was forced to resign as chief executive officer and chair of HP following “differences with the board of directors about how to execute HP’s strategy.”She has frequently been ranked as one of the worst tech CEOs of all time, although we would suspect that at least one of those who followed her into the HP chair were a lot more apocalyptic [surely Apothelkayptic. Ed].

Potential Republican presidential candidates including former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, Florida Senator Marco Rubio, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.

Texas Senator Ted Cruz became the first major figure from either political party to formally announce his 2016 presidential bid.

Among Democrats, Hillary Clinton is expected to be the front-runner for the nomination, although she has yet to formally announce her plans.

 

HP goes Bang. And Olufsen

HPHewlett Packard has decided to strike a deal with Bang & Olufsen to bring its sound systems to its PCs, to its tablets, and to its accessories.

Under the deal, HP said it will custom tune every notebook, desktop and tablet it sells for “precise sound”. Bang & Olufsen kit won’t be in all of the machines it sells, however.

The company said it will create what it describes as a “dedicated audio island” which isolates the sound system from other signals on motherboards. The headphone jack also has a limited amount of metal parts to cut down ground noise.

HP will provide an audio control pane to let people either choose from optimised presets or manually tune the sound.

The first systems with the B&O tech will be available in spring on its Spectre, Omen, Envy and other PCs. The B&O Play brand will be incorporated into HP Pavilion PCs, tablets and some audio accessories.

Dell hits the high spot

Dell logoEven though terminal clients are in an inexorable decline, thin clients performed quite well in 2014, with growth up 4.6 percent compared to the year before.

And there may be brighter news ahead for thin clients, according to a report from market research company IDC – enterprises are expected to resume projects in 2015 that were delayed by the worldwide slump.

The biggest beneficiary of client devices was Dell, which in the fourth quarter of last year had a 27.2 percent share.

HP took second place, with 25.5 percent of the market, followed by Centerm (10.8%), Igel (5.2%) and NComputing (5.1%).

The total number of units shipped in the quarter amounted to 1,418,402 units, a decline of 12.5 percent from the same period in 2013 – and the decline was due to terminal clients being rather old hat.

Dell did well because it won some key sales in the financial sector, IDC said.

NComputing saw its position in the pecking order drop to the number five positionm for the quarter.

Back up kit worth over a billion

emcboxThe market for customised backup appliances reached $1 billion worldwide in the fourth quarter of last year.

This market represents standalone disk products that use software, disk arrays, server engines, and more specifically data coming from backup software.

IDC said that the market for this kind of kit rose by four percent in 2014 and generated revenues of $3.26 billion.

Annual capacity in 2014 rose by 42.8 percent compared to 2013 to a staggering 2.68 exabytes.

Liz Conner, a research manager at IDC, said reasons for the rise in revenues included better software, data tiering, file sharing, data analytics and more investment in integrated systems.

In the fourth quarter, top of the storage pile was EMC with 63.8 percent market share, dwarfing the other players Symantec (11.5%), IBM (6.7%), HP (4%) and Quantum (2.3%).

 

Apple buys into white box servers

novità-apple-2013Cupertino based Apple Inc has decided to ditch HP and Dell to supply its servers and instead is looking to Taiwanese firms to supply its data centre needs.

That’s according to Taiwan wire Digitimes which said some of the local white box server manufacturers have already received orders from Apple for boxes.

One of the major manufacturers of servers is Quanta, which used to specialise almost wholly in making notebooks for big vendors but has diversified its business over the last two years.

It offers servers at a price that undercuts Dell and HP and will customise the machines for customers which already include giants like Microsoft, Google, Facebook and Amazon.

Apple said recently it will open data centres in Ireland and in Denmark and it’s also spending billions on building up data centres in the USA.

The company is also cuddling up to IBM and wants to release tablet machines that will appeal to enterprises rather than the home users it has depended on in the past.

HP resolves Autonomy case with shareholders

INDUSTRY HP 1Maker of expensive printer ink HP has finally won court approval of its settlement with shareholders over its botched Autonomy deal.

US District Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco granted preliminary approval to the accord Friday, saying that unlike the last proposal it doesn’t provide officers and directors with broad protection against possible lawsuits that have nothing to do with the Autonomy acquisition.

The settlement releases HP from investor claims related to Autonomy in exchange for a set of corporate governance reforms and no money damages.

Executives at HP and Autonomy have been spatting over who’s responsible for the $8.8 billion writedown related to the $10 billion 2011 takeover of the UK software company. HP blamed much of the writedown on inaccurate financial statements, said it was the victim of fraud by Autonomy’s managers. Former Autonomy executives say HP missed it all up.

They argued, HP should be forced to litigate the shareholder suit, because then it would have to reveal documents that the Autonomy bosses believe will exonerate them of any wrongdoing. That doesn’t seem likely to happen.

The governance reforms apply to both entities to be formed when HP splits into two companies.

The reforms include the creation of a senior executive-led risk management committee, modifications to board-level oversight of mergers and acquisitions and a new due diligence policy for mergers.

Notebook sales fell in February

notebooksA report said there were large falls in shipments of notebooks in January and February.

Digitise Research said that shipments for the five multinational brands and the top three manufacturers – original design manufacturers – fell by 13 percent and 18 percent in February.

One major reason, the analysts say is because there are high levels of stocks of models intended for home use left over from last year. Fluctuations in exchange rates also caused a decline in sale.

However, it appears that Hewlett Packard managed to buck the trend and in February its notebook shipments rose by 30 percent. It had managed to make adjustments to its overstock and also made significant sales of units for the educational market to India.

Lenovo fell behind HP in the top five, but it was Acer and Asustek which really took a hit, with falls in shipments of as much as 40 percent, Digitimes Research said.

The ODMs, who make notebooks to be rebranded by others, also saw their shipments fall during the period.

 

HP creates cloud server line

Every silver has a cloudy liningThe maker of expensive printer ink, HP said that it is creating a server family for cloud providers.

The project is being done as a joint venture with Foxconn, a partnership announced last year to create cloud-optimised servers. HP has been building servers from Foxconn for a year, but is now giving a name to its server line: Cloudline.

According to HP, its systems are based on standards-based principles and use rack scale computing.

With rack scale systems, functions that were previous located in the server, such as cooling and power, may be part of the rack. The systems will likely be deployed in multi-vendor environments, although users want uniformity in controls.

HP will use the Intelligent Platform Management Interface (IPMI), an open management platform, and other systems that help provide a uniform way of managing hardware.

The hyperscale x86 server market has been growing fast, and this has led to increasing numbers of original design manufacturers (ODM), such as Taiwan’s Quanta entering the game.

HP is announcing these OpenStack systems at the Open Compute Summit and will begin taking orders on some of the systems at the end of this month. The systems use Intel Xeon E5 v3 processors and come in five configurations, including a two-socket (2P) server sled configuration and 1U configurations. No word on pricing yet.

Hyper scale data centres give storage boost

emcboxIDC said that the storage market ended well. In the last quarter, worldwide enterprise storage systems revenue grew 7.2 percent year on year to amount to close to $10.6 billion.

And capacity shipments rose by 43.7 percent compared to the same quarter the previous year to represent 99.2 exabytes.

Eric Sheppard, a research director at IDC, said spending on enterprise storage grew in most markets worldwide with factors including demand for midrange systems using flash memory and systems designed for hyper scale data centres.

EMC was the top dog in fourth quarter, with a 22.2 percent market share. That company was followed by HP (13.8%), Dell (9%), IBM (9%) and Netapp (7.2%).

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Server market grew in Q4 2014

HP-MicroServerFigures supplied by market analyst company Gartner showed that the worldwide server market grew 4.8 percent in shipments for the fourth quarter of 2014.

And revenues grew 2.2 percent in that quarter, compared to the fourth quarter of 2013.

Jeffrey Hewitt a VP at Gartner, described server market for the whole of 2014 as showing strong growth. Growth for the whole year was 2.2 percent.

“Hyper scale data centre deployments as well as service provider installations drove the X86 market upwards,” he said. “Enterprises had less unit growth impact because of the ongoing presence of physical server consolidation through X86 server virtualisation. This overall market growth developed despite declines in both mainframe and Unix platforms.”

HP was the leader server vendor in the quarter in terms of revenues, but only grew 1.5 percent in the whole year. Its market share is 27.9 percent worldwide. IBM showed a decline of 50.6 percent, and Lenovo had extraordinary growth of 743.4 percent. This is because IBM sold its X86 server business to Lenovo in the fourth quarter.

Dell is the second biggest vendor with 17.3 percent in terms of revenues, IBM third, Lenovo fourth and Cisco fifth. “Others” had a market share of 28.6 percent.
HP also led the pack in terms of shipments, pushing out 642,007 units in the fourth quarter.

Former HP executive chairman red-faced in dock

HPFormer senior suit at the maker of expensive printer ink, Ray Lane, has admitted to a sex discrimination trial that he made a mistake in judgment involving the harassment of a female venture capitalist .

Lane, who previously served as executive chairman of HP and president of Oracle told the court, in the case connected to his former employer, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, he stuffed up completely.

He should have informed others that Trae Vassallo told him about unwanted advances by her colleague, Ajit Nazre, during a 2011 business trip.

“I made a mistake. It was my mistake. I cared more about her feelings than anything else. I thought it should be her choice whether to tell others at the firm and start an investigation, he said.

Eventually, he would have taken action, but at the time, he suggested to Vassallo that she think it over and discuss it with her husband, in part because he “feared somewhat for her safety”.

The firm did start an investigation after Vassallo told more partners.

Vassallo had complained that Nazre tried to enter her hotel room at night, wearing a bathrobe and, Lane said, holding a glass of wine.

Lane told the court he worried Nazre “could have pushed his way in” and the situation “could have gone in a different direction”.

In the suit, Pao alleges she suffered discrimination and retaliation after Nazre pressured her into an affair in 2006 that she soon ended. The discriminatory conduct eventually spread to other partners, leading her to miss out on a key promotion, she alleges.

After Pao told Lane about the affair in 2007, Lane told her to consider marriage to Nazre, she said in her suit. Lane denied telling Pao to marry Nazre.

Lane said Nazre’s bonus was cut that year as punishment for the affair.

Vassallo, who testified in the case last week, said Lane had told her to be “flattered” by Nazre’s advances.

Lane denied saying that, but an independent investigator hired to look into Nazre’s actions testified that Vassallo had told him Lane did say that, but she believed he was joking.

HP joins the Internet of Things bandwagon

HPMajor vendors have convinced themselves that the Internet of Things (IoT) is the next big thing, and the latest to join the band is Hewlett Packard.

HP said its own version of IoT will allow organisations to manage different sets of IoT sensors, analyse data and use vertical applications on machine to machine devices.

It also claimed to have introduced the first vertical application called the HP Energy Management Pack.

The packages are aimed at communications service providers (CSPs) and is essentially remote management to discover devices, configure the devices and control IoT traffic.

The HP Energy Management Pack is intended to allow the CSPs to give secure home automation and energy control to people, to industries and to councils.

For example, Oxford City Council might want to remotely manage public lights based on profiles, emergencies and on weather conditions. And the pack might let “smart cities” manage parking using sensors.

 

Hardcopy peripherals value grew

HPA report from IDC said that values of hardcopy peripherals worldwide increased in the fourth quarter by 1.7 percent, bringing in revenues of $15.2 billion.

But although the value figure was up, unit shipments fell by 2.6 percent during the quarter, amounting to 30.8 million inits.

The laser segment grew for the whole year by 0.8 percent, and colour laser shipments grew, at the expense of monochrome lasers, where shipments fell.

Canon was number one during the fourth quarter, with most of its shipment growth coming from the US, Canada, Japan and Western Europe.

HP also saw shipments grow in the Canadian and Western European regions.

When the market is divided out, the fourth quarter shows that inkjet printers fell by 3.9 percent, while laser shipments increased by 0.2 percent.

A4 printers remain the dominant type with 78.4 percent unit share, compared to A3 printers with 21.6 percent unit share.