Downfall of HP TouchPad shocks the social world

disruptive technologyWhen HP launched the TouchPad just over one month ago, headlines dubbed it as the iPad 2’s “new competitor.” Many were sure that HP had possibly came up with the latest disruptive technology. The TouchPad used WebOS 3 which allowed for easy multi-tasking. It also had Flash-enabled web browsing, which the iPad lacked. You could begin just about anything without starting an app, receive text messages and answer calls, print via wireless to compatible networked HP printers, use pre-installed software of Quickoffice and Google docs, and use the webcam to make video calls, among many other things.

When word came out recently that HP will discontinue all Web OS hardware, including all phones and the TouchPad, and sell off their PC business, comments, mostly of shock and ridicule, were all over the social web. What happened?

Why did the HP TouchPad fail?

Perhaps what equally shocked HP customers is that HP had the knowledge and the resources to predict the future. As a leader in the PC world, HP was very likely to produce the next disruptive technology.

In their research paper Predicting the Future with Social Media, HP Labs recognized the power of social media, and how online discourses between customers can lead to collective wisdom that can help companies predict outcomes. Social media monitoring is extremely useful when it comes to building the next disruptive technology, and HP clearly knew that.

So what exactly caused the HP TouchPad to be strangely short-lived? It could be because they released too quickly, before fully understanding the market’s needs. The Next Web reports that when HP tested webOS on an iPad, it worked twice as fast as on the Touchpad. Conceivably Tech writes: “We never liked the idea of the Touchpad, since it did not make any sense as a platform. It was foolish to throw an iPad rival on the market for the same price as the iPad, but without appropriate ecosystem support. We took quite some heat for chastising HP’s strategy lately, but we believe that we were right: A tablet without platform and ecosystem support is business suicide and we are just stunned how naïve HP was with its tablet opportunity.”

Avoiding disruptive technology failures with OneDesk

OneDesk strengthens the product development process by helping companies ensure that they understand what the market wants before developing the next innovative product. Businesses can use OneDesk’s built-in social media monitoring tool to find out what the market is talking about, and identify risk early-on. Through OneDesk, companies can collect feedback, issues, ideas and compliments through a multitude of channels, including a unique customer portal. Employees, customers and partners are in constant contact and can collaborate and communicate ideas and problems. Then, by bringing the feedback into the innovation and idea application (which is interconnected to many other applications), everyone can take action and produce customer-centric products

Try OneDesk and avoid disruptive technology failures. Learn more by reading the related blog posts and tutorials below.

We want to know: Were you surprised by HP’s decision to discontinue the TouchPad?

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