Google creeps up on Microsoft at HP: Now office apps

Hewlett-Packard announces its entry into the Google Apps Reseller program as it cozies up to Google in business.

HP's $330 Chromebook.
HP's $330 Chromebook. Hewlett-Packard

Hewlett-Packard is now a Google Apps reseller, as it continues to lean more on Google-related products and tries to make itself more relevant in the age of the mobile device.

Those mobile devices now include the Google-software-based HP SlateBook x2, HP Chromebook, and HP Slate 7.

Now add HP SMP IT in a Box to that mix, which HP defines it as its "entry into the Google Apps Reseller program."

The program will "leverage" HP hardware, including PCs and printers, with Google Apps for Business.

"More than 5 million businesses currently run on Google Apps for Business," HP said. Those apps include Gmail, Calendar, Drive, and Docs -- all running in the cloud.

In this case, Google's cloud not Microsoft's. "We couldn't be more excited to have HP join the Google Apps Reseller Program and bring their decades of experience to helping SMBs thrive in the cloud," Amit Singh, president of Google Enterprise, said in a statement.

Sales of PCs, which run mostly on Microsoft software, have been sputtering badly this year. Tablets and smartphones, which run mostly on Apple and Google software, continue to chip away at PC market share.

Market researcher Canalys' latest forecast has tablets accounting for 37 percent of the PC market this year (Canalys defines a tablet as a PC), a 7 increase from 2012.

"The great hope for Windows 8 was that it would unleash new PC form factors, combining the best of both PCs and tablets," Canalys said. But "these convertible products have disappointed so far. Convertibles are too heavy in tablet form and too expensive when compared with clamshell products."

Featured Video

Why do so many of us still buy cars with off-road abilities?

Cities are full of cars like the Subaru XV that can drive off-road but will never see any challenging terrain. What drives us to buy cars with these abilities when we don't really need them most of the time?

by Drew Stearne