In 2008, HP-branded digital cameras will still be on the market, but they won’t be designed, manufactured, or distributed by HP.
With its so-called Print 2.0 initiative at the center of its digital-imaging strategy, HP evidently believes digital cameras are of secondary importance to the whole business of retail photo finishing, home photo printing, and various online photo services. Margins, no doubt, are pretty thin on HP’s digital cameras, at least relative to other HP products and services, so this move makes sense. HP still needs a branded digital camera, at least for now, but it doesn’t have to design, manufacture, and distribute that camera.
As a result of its new camera business strategy, HP will take a pre-tax charge of approximately $30 million in the fourth fiscal quarter ending Oct. 31, 2007.