On Monday, Hewlett-Packard CEO Leo Apotheker outlined the future plans for his company, which involve three main priorities: public/private hybrid cloud computing, connected devices of all types, and finally, management, security, and analytics software.
In Apotheker's presentation on Monday, he delved further into his earlier remarks, and said HP is capable of delivering 100 million webOS-enabled devices into the marketplace per year. He went on to illustrate this point by saying that HP sells two printers and two PCs every second of every day. This, Apotheker said, will be the guideline for WebOS' scale.
According to the figures presented by Apotheker, HP could conceivably sell 240 WebOS products a minute. It's not implausable, as HP is the largest technology company in the world in terms of revenue, and last year, Gartner Research estimated that HP shipped 62.7 million PCs.
If every one of those PCs came with WebOS, HP would only have to sell 37 million smartphones, tablets, and printer/printer interfaces per year to reach its 100 million goal.
Of course, this's only what HP is "capable of," and not necessarily the reality it'll deliver.
It's unclear how many WebOS devices are in circulation at present, but the number is undoubtedly quite low. Nielsen's tally of mobile operating system market share (Q4'09-Q4'10) put WebOS in the "other" category with Windows Phone and Symbian, which combined made up only 18% of the market, while BlackBerry, iOS, and Android all ran about neck and neck.
If WebOS sells at a level anywhere near what HP is capable of, WebOS' market growth will look like a vertical line on next year's graphs.