HP chairman found not dogfooding own PCs
HP executive chairman Ray Lane provided unintentional irony for his company on Monday after a profile showed that he doesn't use his company's own products. The Reuters look showed that, at home, the board member uses a MacBook Air, not a Folio 13, ProBook, or other HP-made system. No mention was made of the apparent self-contradiction in the talk, which instead focused on the HP board's decision to fire Leo Apotheker as CEO in favor of Meg Whitman.Lane did say he was focused on software and services, where Whitman was focused on hardware. He helped lead to the reversal of Apotheker's decision to phase out the PC group.
The executive reached HP's board just over a year ago, on November 1, and he expects to shift more of his time away from HP towards venture capitalism at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and his role as chairman in hybrid car maker Fisker Automotive. As such, he's not as tied to the company as Whitman, other executives, and the board, some of whom have been with HP for years.
His choice of a Mac, while possibly non-exclusive, is nonetheless symbolic as it shows one of the key directors behind the company using a key competitor's hardware. HP is still successful in PCs, but a lack of "dogfooding," or using the products of one's own company, isn't likely to help shake the company's reputation for focusing on budget PCs over premium hardware.