Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) has announced a thin client interface for casual browsing and media consumption targeted at hospitality and educational businesses. The target audience is likely to be hotels, Internet cafes and other public spaces such as libraries and airports where users only want to check email and consume media such as information and photos. HP is already the leader in hardware sales and this will extend its dominance in the segment. 
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Named the ‘Passport 1912nm Internet Monitor’, it is an all-in-one desktop running a Linux based OS costing $259. It is meant for casual usage and end users and so there is no need to install software making it malware resistant which is likely to enhance user experience as performance will not degrade on heavy usage.
It comes with an 18.5″ screen and shows only 5 large icons for music, photos, video, settings and the web. A card reader and several USB ports allow users to connect media via SSD cards and thumb drives. It will also run a stripped down version of Firefox to improve speed. It is aimed at casual usage, where most of the computing is done online and is likely to gain traction with tourism, education and hospitality.
Potential Upside For HP
The thin client architecture for hotel Internet monitors solve a lot of problems for hotels as it makes the system highly resistant to degradation in performance and malware, thus reducing maintenance costs for the clients. If the Passport 1912nm Internet Monitor improves HP market share in global desktops sold from our current estimate of ~20% to ~25% by the end of our forecast period, we can expect an upside of upto 5% on our current price estimates.
We currently have a $32 Trefis price estimate for HP, which is around 50% above of the current market price.Notes:
- HP Passport 1912nm internet monitor: coming to hotel lobbies and airports near you, www.engadget.com, 21 June 2012 [↩]