HPs bet on touchscreens–forgot to tell us why a customer will care

I saw this article in the WSJ, talking about HP‘s bet on touchscreen technology to review PC sales.  They are apparently getting these things solds in to things like airports and luxury boxes, etc., and that’s great.   We will need this technology to be mainstream and everywhere, so I’m thrilled that HP’s doing this work.  We will all want this stuff someday– I want my bathroom mirror or my desk surface to someday be a touchscreen PC that can let me scroll through email, tracking key news or whatever.  Seems a reasonable and easy thing to foresee.

The thing that this article didn’t have and what I think is limiting this technology today is  this: a scenario that a user would care about.  This was a miss in the article, from a PR point, or whatever, it’s notable that there’s not a single mention of what a customer might actually care about using the technology for.  Lesson for any marketer here–make sure taht you are pitching very hard this statement whenever you’re gettin gan article written: “here’s why a customer will care…”

It’s an interesting contrast to look at the side project that TechCrunch has been putting together on their little touchscreen web appliance thingy.  They ooze passion about the user scenario they care about–I’m sitting on a sofa and I want to surf the web with a screen.  Easy to grok, clear why customers would want it.  I’d argue strongly that this is a more approporiate use of the opportunity for press than the HP WSJ article.

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