HP isn't quitting the PC business, it's only thinking about it, a top UK executive has said.
Last week, HP surprised many with a trio of big announcements, saying it would drop its WebOS TouchPad, buy Autonomy for $11.7bn, and spin off its PC arm, called Personal Systems Group (PSG).
Now, the head of PSG in the UK has stressed that spinning off or selling the PC business is just one idea HP has - and it may yet decide to keep making PCs.
"Let me be absolutely clear in saying that at no stage has HP said it is quitting the PC business," Paul Hunter said in an emailed statement. "Three options are being investigated, and whether the company is spun off, sold or kept in the HP portfolio, the team in the UK remains committed to creating and supporting great products and services."
And, indeed he's technically correct: last week's statement from the board merely said it was considering "the exploration of the separation of its PC business into a separate company through a spin-off or other transaction" - while laying out the benefits of such a plan.
“We believe exploring alternatives for PSG could enhance its performance, allow it to more effectively compete and provide greater value for HP shareholders,” said CEO Leo Apotheker. It's unclear how "exploring alternatives" would achieve any of those goals, but spinning off or selling the company certainly could.
“We believe there are alternatives that could afford PSG more autonomy and flexibility to make strategic investment decisions to better position the business for its customers, partners and employees," he added at the time.
Hunter also said "all WebOS products will be supported and HP fully intends to support the future development of the WebOS platform, though again how that will be managed is still under discussion".
That echoed other statements from HP execs this week, who have stressed the platform will turn up on other products, possibly printers.
He apologised for being "slow to answer" questions around what's happening to WebOS. "The sheer scale of interest in the discounted products took us a little by surprise," Hunter said, referencing the fire sale on the TouchPad that saw the device sell out across the US, Australia and the UK.
"We are now working on ensuring everyone that owns a WebOS device has a positive experience," he added.
This article originally appeared at pcpro.co.uk