HP on the up as PC segment boosts earnings

Share price in HP is up 2% during overnight trading as increased sales in its ‘Personal Systems’ unit push revenues beyond analyst expectations.

With the final quarter of the year returning increased growth for the business, full-year revenues were recorded at $58.8 billion, up 0.5% from 2018. Net earnings for the business were down year-on-year, though this will be partly down to the acquisition of acquisition of Bromium, enabling the business to venture into security services.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this earnings call is the success of the ‘Personal Systems’ unit, which includes the sales of laptops and desktop PCs. This segment has been a difficult one for many companies to swallow in recent years, though 4% year-on-year increase in revenues to $10.43 billion shows there is still life left in the party.

“We continued to outperform the PC market with broad-based growth across all regions and product category,” CEO Enrique Lores said during the earnings call. “In calendar Q3, we grew faster than our competitors gaining 1.2 points of shares. While we are proud of these results, share gain continues to be an outcome, not an objective.”

The next quarter is likely to see sales decrease for laptops and desktop PCs, though this is partly down to seasonal demands and constraints on CPU supply. This is largely unavoidable, but this is also a segment which could see some interesting developments over the mid-term future.

One area which is yet to make any meaningful impact on the technology landscape is embedded connectivity in laptops. This might not surge the price of laptops north, but it perhaps will force enterprise organisations into a refreshment cycle of inventory.

With more companies encouraging mobile workforces, embedded connectivity is becoming more important. It is easy to tether laptops to smartphones currently, but why would you when standalone connectivity is an option, especially if the bill can be sent directly to your boss.

The personal computing segment is not the most exciting or innovative aspect of the technology world, though with connectivity being promised everywhere and anywhere possible, there is still something to talk about.

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