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Many traditional hardware resellers are frustrated in that they know about the cloud but not how to take advantage of it in their sales, Sinu's Velez said. That presents an opening for HP with Google Apps for Business.
However, dealing with Google requires a good mobile strategy, and mobile is a big boy's business, Velez said.
"HP will have to compete with Samsung, which is competing with Apple," he said. "I don't know if HP can compete in this space. And, HP has a lot of legacy infrastructure."
Even so, Velez said, the new HP-Google relationship could be the catalyst for Sinu to sign up as an HP partner as an alternative to its current Dell relationship.
"If HP hadn't shown signs of life like this, I might have considered another alternative like Lenovo," he said. "HP wouldn't have been on my list. But now things are different. [HP CEO] Meg Whitman came from eBay, and knows infrastructure-as-a-service. And she built eBay into a huge marketplace, making it part of the future of software-as-a-service and the cloud. It's encouraging to know she built eBay. And now HP is talking to Google, which, like eBay, is very disruptive."
Ken Presti and Steve Burke contributed to this article.