The giveaways continue! Google, Microsoft, now HP — apparently, the cool thing to do is to get your product in the hands of people who may or may not even want it. HP’s Todd Bradley and Jon Rubenstein just gave away Pres to everyone in the audience at Fortune’s Brainstorm Tech conference. I think it’s a great idea, personally. It’s important to Microsoft to do serious mass testing of its product before putting it out there, and it’s important to HP to keep webOS fresh in people’s minds. Keeping a few hundred webOS devices out in offices and homes across the nation will go a long way towards doing that.
I doubt they’re going to convert many (if any) of the audience, but let’s be honest, there are probably a lot of Pres sitting around so it’s a pretty microscopic gesture in terms of cost, while the benefit is a few hundred influential people have a hands-on experience with their flagship OS.