‘One-Year Old’ HP Shows off New Products

With the one-year anniversary of its Compaq merger nearing, Hewlett-Packard is rolling out a spate of new products from its integrated tech house — all geared for small to medium-sized businesses.

HP has been phasing out some of its Compaq-branded products for the enterprise sector since the two tech giants concluded their merger last May 7th. In the commercial PC and notebook space, Compaq leads as HP’s chief brand. Today’s release of new Compaq-branded notebooks reflects a move by the systems vendor to expand its consumer lines to the small business market.

As part of the pitch to SMB’s HP said its Compaq nx9010 laptop comes with a variety of wireless features, such as dual-use wireless LAN cards that transmit data on networks based on the draft 802.11g specification (which promises higher speeds) and the existing 802.11b wireless networks. The card includes a 128-bit wired equivalent privacy encryption. The laptop is priced around $1,549.

HP is also targeting the small business market with its low cost HP Server tc2120 and HP ProLiantML300, touting them as inexpensive way (starting at $549) for SMBs to manage files, share printers, host a Web site or expand a database.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based HP’s new notebook contains Intel Pentium 4 and Intel Celeron processors, include large capacity 30-, 40-, 60- or 80-GB hard drives, and up to 1-GB 266-MHz DDR system memory.

Customers have a choice of 14.1-inch XGA or 15-inch XGA and SXGA+ displays, an integrated 10/100 LAN, 56K V.92 Mini PCI modem and optional 802.11b or 54g, an eight cell lithium-ion battery, fixed optical drive with CD, DVD, CD-RW or DVD/CD-RW, and one Type II PC Card slot.

The notebook also contains user programmable instant launch keys, intuitive scroll pad, touch pad with on/off button, one IEEE 1394 port, three USB 2.0 ports, S-Video connector, port replicator connector and a ATI Mobility Radeon graphics controller with 64-MB of DDR SDRAM.

HP is also upgrading its partner network, known as partnerONE. The program calls for a commitment on HP’s part to improve local support and customized solutions for medium-sized businesses.

The new products and services pitches reflect the business approach HP has pursued since its difficult merger was concluded last year, which includes looking hard at which overlapping product lines have stronger market share and phasing out the weaker product.