The ecosystem that Microsoft has built up around its Windows
operating system is showing signs of strain. In one of several
recent moves by partners that sell or support the company’s
software, Hewlett-Packard, the world’s No. 1 PC maker, has quietly
assembled a group of engineers to develop software that will let
customers bypass certain features of Vista, the latest version of
Windows. Employees on a separate skunk works team are even angling
to replace Windows with an HP-assembled operating system, say
three sources close to the company.
It’d be a big bite to chew, but if there’s any company in the world that could do it, it might be HP. I hope it’s true.