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Adam Shaffer, senior vice president of marketing for PCM, formerly PC Mall, a $1.5 billion IT solutions and services company headquartered in El Segundo, Calif., said he is "bullish" on the HP personal systems business with big enterprise customers doing significant Windows XP upgrades.
"It is refresh time for XP," he said. "We see this as a great opportunity to make that call to our customers. Their PCs are 'x' years old and it is time for a refresh. And the systems are more powerful, faster and energy efficient than ever."
HP has evolved its personal systems business with sleek new multi-OS hybrid devices, said Shaffer. "HP has been creating great products and it's a great moment in time to refresh PCs," he said. "What is brilliant about HP is they are not backing any one horse. They are playing the Android game, the Windows 8 game, the Chromebook game. In a world of bring your own devices to work, we need to be able to support them all."
Shaffer said HP has not gotten enough credit for its sleek and "sexy" new devices. "People always talk about Apple's stuff being sexy, but HP's stuff is now very sexy. People say the PC is dead. I have an iPad, but I don't use it. I use my PC all the time. And now I have tablet-notebook hybrid."
Shaffer, who recently attended an HP partner advisory board meeting, credited HP's Whitman with driving a new level of entrepreneurial spirit in businesses like HP's printing and personal systems unit. "The HP teams are more energized than ever," he said. "They are playing offense and that wasn't the case before Meg came on board. She has really brought HP together."
Dennis Wang, COO of Golden Star Technology (GST), a large HP partner based in Cerritos, Calif., with a significant HP business, said he expects his HP personal systems business to show double-digit sales growth this year as it has for the last three consecutive years.
GST's commercial and government customers are moving ahead with significant desktop upgrades, said Wang. For example, he said, GST recently won a $2.7 million, 2,500 unit desktop upgrade deal.
"There is an exaggeration on the decline of PCs," he said. "The flip side is there is too much hype around bring your own device and tablets. We still see a very big need for workstations, PCs and laptops. Customers still love their personal systems. Many of them are not ready for tablets or bring your own device. Customers still need reliable PCs and laptops that are secure and work well in commercial IT environments."