I’ve been a bit of an HP fanboy for a while.  I have an 8 year old HP laser printer that I love, a 4 year old HP pavilion that still runs great, an HP Media Smart Home Server, and this year I bought my wife an HP laptop, and a new colour laser jet printer…so I was pretty annoyed last week when they announced they were getting out of the consumer space to put their head in the clouds.

Then I read this: HP Touchpad to Return.  Basically, HP is going to do another run of touch pads.

I managed to snag one last week, and even at $150 (for the 32gig version) it may be over priced considering there are exactly 352 apps in the WebOS app store (and only about 10-20% of those are touchpad specific).  Plus the thing’s buggy as heck, and heavier than the 1st gen iPads.

Are consumers REALLY going to buy a product from a company that wants to exit a market so they can chase some cloud pipe dream?

Does HP realize that those consumers are also the people who work in enterprises?  The same people that HP wants to put their faith in massive enterprise cloud computing platforms that offer them major profits.

What happened to HP the family controlled company that slowly and steadily first became THE name in consumer printers, and is now the largest selling computer manufacturer?

They’ve become a company of dashed hopes and broken promises.  The company that bought Compaq, and shuttered my beloved iPaq line.  Who killed their Media Smart Windows Home Server line. Who ship printers with “e-print” ready stickers…which have notes inside the box saying a firmware upgrade will be available summer 2011 (I’m still waiting btw).  A company which all but killed WebOS last week, and this week resurrects it.

I was at Alliance/Atlantis in the early 2000’s when they went through 3 CEO’s in 2 years and it felt like this, no true direction, just a constant sprint towards the next big thing.  Internally it was demoralizing, and a good chunk of us left.

HP is a company without direction, and a company that anyone would be foolish to trust with hardware or software while they are so clueless.

HP is dead to me until some major corporate shake ups happen.

They don’t want me as a consumer?  Fair enough, but I’m sure as heck not going to recommend them as a cloud provider to my bosses when they can’t even commit to holding true to their word on exiting a business.

If HP bought Amazon’s S3 (which I passionately love), I would immediately start looking at alternatives, because recent track records indicate it’s only a matter of time before HP exits the market.