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Hewlett-Packard's Big Opportunity In High-End Computers

Apple’s decision to never release a Mac/iPad hybrid product says HP could continue to compete with pricey MacBooks/Macs.

Not every enterprise client will be able to afford the Surface Book/Surface Pro 4.

HP’s cheaper 2-in-1 tablet/notebooks are good alternatives to the Microsoft Surface laptops.

A focus on high-margin PCs is better than HP going toe-to-toe with Lenovo’s entry-level computer products.

Tim Cook himself made it very clear that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) will never create/sell a converged Mac/iPad computer product. This decision should help HP (NYSE:HPQ) further improve its sales of high-end laptops to enterprise users and creative professionals.

Investors should care that Cook's dismissive attitude toward touchscreen-friendly computers creates a big opportunity for HP's latest 2-in-1 tablet/notebook products. The recalcitrant policy of Apple to only sell MacBooks with no touchscreen displays means the $800 HP Spectre 2 could render the MacBook Air less attractive among business users.

Source: HP

The affordable price tag of the Spectre 2 ($800 comes with free detachable keyboard and LTE wireless connectivity) makes it a perfect threat to the 13-inch $1,000 MacBook Air 2015. Unlike Apple's latest Ultrabook, the Spectre 2 has a touchscreen display and it could also be used as standalone tablet.

Cook was also wrong to claim that the iPad Pro could replace Windows PCs. Various hands-on reviews already proved that the current ARM-based iPad Pro is not yet a legit laptop replacement. The iPad Pro's lack of compatibility with industry standard x86-only software means it is an inferior product that enterprise users will likely ignore.

Enterprise Users Have Limited Budgets

The previous popularity of the MacBook Air helped Apple become the top seller of Ultrabook or smaller-screen laptops. However, the need to buy a separate MacBook and an iPad Pro to match the versatility of a Windows...