Hewlett-Packard: the Flight of the Kittyhawk Essay

873 Words Aug 19th, 2008 4 Pages
In 1992, Hewlett Packard made the decision to produce 1.3 inch disk drives, leapfrogging over the 1.8 inch format to position themselves as market leaders for the smaller drive. Prior to this time, HP prided itself on its leadership position within this industry and its ability to innovate more quickly than its competitors. However, the Disk Memory Division (DMD) was lagging behind the company standard, comprising only 3.2% of total HP revenues in 1992. HP was trying to use the Kittyhawk project to propel the company into a higher profile position within the disk drive market.
Potential uses for the drive included game equipment, PDA's, notebook and sub-notebook computers, handheld pen technologies and digital film cartridges. If
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The Kittyhawk did launch within 12 months, and was expected to be sold primarily to PDA manufacturers and internally to the HP notebook division. The original strategy dictated that after achieving success in the mobile computing area, the Kittyhawk would then migrate into lower cost applications such as gaming and other low-cost initiatives.
But in actuality, Kittyhawk only sold 165,000 units (as opposed to projected 500,000 units) and produced much less revenue than originally anticipated. With all of the success in the technological execution, one might wonder what led to the failure of the Kittyhawk in the marketplace. Many of the reasons for the failure include incorrect assumptions about the nature of the marketplace and the primary customers: ASSUMPTIN --- REALITY
1 . PDA market would develop quickly.--- Consumer marketplace was not ready to adopt PDAs; HP did not realize that the complementary technologies did not yet exist in the PDA market.
2. There were several customers that HP assumed would buy the product (including Corvallis division of HP.)--- Kittyhawk would not meet the storage needs of Corvallis; product was not meeting demands of a

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