About ten years ago I discovered that I couldn’t use more than one HP product on my computer at a time. I had an HP printer and I’d bought an HP scanner. But the driver software couldn’t co-exist on the same computer. At least, HP declared they couldn’t, and they didn’t care.
They still don’t care about customers, except as a revenue stream. This is again clearly highlighted by their plan to send spam to newer HP printers (Computerworld). They’ve outfitted the new printers with Internet connections, presumably to provide automatic support and updates. They’re also planning to use the link to automatically print advertisements on these printers.
As noted in Slashdot, they send the ads, collect the income, and we pay for the paper and ink.
Some commentators suspect that HP’s plan will run afoul with Federal Trade Commission rules against unsolicited fax transmissions. Maybe, or maybe they’ll say it’s a form of email, and that the email (advertisements) are part of an existing business relationship.
HP wasn’t always that way.
When the industry was young, people prized the products of Hewlett-Packard. They managed to field some of the best equipment in the industry. I fondly remember their high speed oscilloscopes and digital logic monitors. Alex likes to gleefully show his friends his ancient Laserjet, which still works, never jams, and uses $30 toner cartridges.
Then came Carly Florina. She became CEO in the late ’90s. She ejected everything that had made HP great and systematically drove the company into the ground in her quest for “shareholder value.”
I expect a similar degree of sensitivity and acumen if California is foolish enough to elect her Senator.