10 Worst Tech Industry Decisions Ever
#8 - HP
In 1994, believing that it was no longer cost-effective for HP to have its own microprocessor foundry, the company ceased production and development of PA-RISC systems and instead partnered with Intel to produce this new VLIW 64-bit enterprise chip, known as the IA-64.
It was released by Intel and HP by the name "Itanium" in 2001 after seven years of development and billions of dollars of R&D invested. Their performances were low and horribly slow as compared to less expensive, x86 chips.
HP is now the only company to sell Itanium-based servers under their Integrity brand, and Oracle recently announced that it would no longer be developing software for the chip.
#7 - HP, Compaq
While the Itanium partnership with Intel surely started HP down the road to hell, it was accelerated in 2001 when HP decided to merge with Compaq in a $25 billion dollar deal.
Many objected this because Compaq had many overlapping product lines and would get the company involved in the low-margin PC business considering that its main competitor, IBM, was already in the process of exiting.
The merged "New" HP lost half of its market value and the company incurred heavy job losses. The then CEO Carly Fiorina stepped down in 2005.
HP started losing money because of tremendous low-margin industry competition.