|Re: you guys are wrong ... same as HP MBA bozo's|
Message #12 Posted by Mike Sebastian on 23 Aug 2003, 10:44 a.m.,
in response to message #9 by Norm
You guys are wrong because you keep saying that HP has to compete against the $2.00 calculators at Wal-Mart.
No, we are not saying that at all. Producing an absurdly cheap calculator, IMHO, only cheapens the reputation of that manufacturer. HP really cheapened their reputation when they put the 6S on sale. TI's functional equivalent at that time, the TI-34, cost twice as much.
After I first posted this response, it dawned on me that TI doesn't compete on price. TI competes on features. Although, they do target specific price points, and the price point to some degree does dictate the features that will be offered. In any category, I doubt you will find that TI has the cheapest calculators. HP and Casio each offer cheaper graphing calculators. Sharp seems to have the lowest price "name brand" scientifc calculators, but this price advantage comes with a cost - cheaper materials (e.g. phenolic PCBs) and shorter lifespan (e.g. higher failure rate of the heat seal - the ribbon-cable-like connector between the PCB and LCD).
I can see HP wanting to compete with TI in the lucrative educational market. The 38G was clearly designed for the educational market. The HP-30S was clearly an attempt to compete with the TI-30 series of low-end scientific calculators. The 39/40G and now the 9G are more recent educational offerings. But, HP still really isn't a viable competitor in the educational market. HP is now only offering "me too" scientific and graphing calculators. TI provides a lot of supporting materials for educators, which HP isn't doing. And now, teachers have built lesson plans around specific TI calculators (I've been told that is why the TI-82 is still in production), so it is going to take a product that is significantly better (e.g. something radical like the Xpander with lots of supporting educator materials) to get teachers to switch.
Meanwhile, HP still seems to be producing calulators for the MBAs, which is why the 12C is still in production and why HP still has a wide selection of high-priced financial calculators. (This suggests to me that HP could still produce high-priced calculators for technical professionals.)
Edited: 23 Aug 2003, 11:42 a.m.