Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

HP Earnings Today: Will Léo Apotheker Speak?

Hewlett-Packard CEO Léo Apotheker has been on the job since Nov. 1, making today’s quarterly earnings call his first as the CEO of the world’s largest technology company.

Analysts are feeling generally positive about HP’s prospects. IT spending has continued to recover, and Chris Whitmore, an analyst with Deutsche Bank, said he expects sales of servers, corporate PCs and software at HP should offset relatively weaker results in the printing and consumer PC business. The consensus estimate calls for HP to report per-share earnings of $1.29 on sales of $32.95 billion.

But unless they are disappointing in some way, the results will take a back seat to what details, if any, emerge about the vision Apotheker is laying out for the future of HP. Last month, HP shook up its board of directors in apparent hope of exorcising lingering demons after the surprise resignation of former CEO Mark Hurd in August.

There have been hints that HP will focus anew on software, yet those hints are coming amid a renewed push in the tablet business. Then again, Apotheker is probably saving up his plans for March 14, when HP holds a big event in Palo Alto for the press and media. That of course won’t stop the tea-leaf reading that’s been under way about HP for some time.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work