When Innovation Like Android Steps In To Shake Things Up

Tablet-HP-Slate-AIn a rare admission by the former eBay CEO, Hewlett-Packard President and CEO Meg Whitman attributes the ability to enter a new segment of the tablet market to Google's operating system, Android. "Frankly, having Android products here helps a lot," she said during the company's fiscal Q2 2013 earnings call. "This $169 Slate helps [HP] cover a segment of the market that we didn't have before."

Yes -- HP's Whitman attributes market opportunity to Google Android, but the latest entry HP level tablet, Slate 7, met with bleak reviews as it goes head-to-head in competition with Nexus 7. Whitman holds high hopes for mobile and a positive turnaround for the company with help from the software that sits in the company's hardware. Following the rollout of its first Chromebook in February, HP launched the new Slate 7 in the second quarter. It's called innovating.

One thing is for sure -- many advertising execs and search marketers don't pay enough attention to innovators and innovations that might not change their job descriptions today, but influence how they optimize, serve or buy media in the future. The hype around some technologies and the immediate need to improve margins and profits sometimes overshadows or overwhelms people. They finally catch up and scramble to understand how the technology affects their business or how they can use it to build better services and processes.

The surprising behavior initially caught me off guard because of the edginess of online marketing and the technologies that many companies tap to find success in everything from ad targeting to building relationships.

Accenture tells us in a recent survey that 64% of company execs surveyed admit to being focused on product line extensions rather than big ideas. The survey of 519 companies across more than 12 industry sectors in France, the U.K. and the U.S. reveals that 46% of executives said their company had become more risk-averse when considering new ideas. The study also found that companies with a formal system in place for innovation are 75% more likely to define their strategy as delivering a competitive advantage.

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