Google taps HP to sell Google Apps, hardware bundle

Google taps HP to sell Google Apps, hardware bundle

On Wednesday, Hewlett-Packard and Google debuted an IT solution for
small- and medium-size businesses that are looking to eliminate
complexity and cut costs. The new offering bundles HP’s PC hardware with
Google’s Google Apps services.
It’s so simple, the companies said, that HP is calling it “HP SMB IT
in a Box,” combining PCs and printers with the Google Apps suite of
productivity services. It’s all tied up with a thin layer of HP
management software, designed to virtually eliminate oversight, and help
keep setup to a minimum. The new program will roll out in July via HP’s
reseller network, HP said.
HP announced the new program as part of its Discover conference in
Las Vegas, aimed at businesses from SMBs up through the enterprise.
“What this venture is designed to do,” said HP chief executive Meg
Whitman, “is to help simplify the customer’s IT environment,” for those
small-to-medium sized businesses that adopt Google Apps, Computerworld reported.

Extending reach

Strategically, the partnership broadens HP’s relationships with
Google. Although HP has long been a partner of Microsoft, HP has
apparently felt that it’s worth hedging its bets. While HP supported Windows 8 with a bevy of laptops,
it’s also announced a pair of Chromebooks, the laptops that run
Google’s Chrome OS and provide direct links to Google services. HP announced its first Chromebook
this past spring for $330, but also followed it up recently with the
Pavilion 14, a $299 version that reinforces the company’s commitment to
Google’s services.
Google, for its part, can tap into HP’s extensive relationships with
businesses of all stripes, pushing ahead in its bid to oust Microsoft’s
Office suite from the enterprise. HP is now a Google Apps for Business
reseller. More than 5 million businesses currently run on Google Apps
for Business, according to Google; Google Apps services include Gmail,
IM, Calendar, Drive, Docs
Over time, IT In a Box will include integrated consoles for
resellers, IT administrators and end users, allowing easy access to the
entire solution including Google Apps for Business, HP said.
“HP recognizes the constantly evolving needs of SMB customers in
today’s dynamic business environment,” said Ron Coughlin, senior vice
president and general manager of  Consumer PCs and Solutions for HP, in a
statement. “Together with HP’s channel partners, we will offer our
customers an incredible bundle of PCs, printers and Google Apps for
Business, enabling business owners to focus on their customers instead
of worrying about IT.” 
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