History has shown that when it comes to technology, the fastest method to hamper consumer adoption is to have FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt). In my limited lifespan, this dates back to the VHS-Betamax duel back in the 80s, and continues today in the BluRay-HD battles. Nobody wants to buy the wrong thing, and consumers will often sit around and wait for a victor to emerge.
HP, a company I’ve liked over the years (and one where I have a lot of friends), decided that they wanted to get involved and, for lack of a more perfect phrase, screw with the HDTV industry by using the term “HDTV 2.0″. Shame on you, HP, for such an ill-timed, inappropriate, and unnecessary move.
Consumers today have enough trouble differentiating between 720p, 1080i, and 1080p when they try to buy a set (answer: the first two are effectively the same, 1080p is the ‘better one’ that you should be looking for if you are spending more than about $1500 on a set).
They have enough issues trying to figure out if they should buy an upscaling DVD player or an actual high-definition player (answer: unless you have a very good set, you probably won’t really notice the difference, plus I wouldn’t buy until the format is settled).
They have to figure out if they should buy DVI or HDMI or component cables (answer: it’s gotta be HDMI, no debate here), and once they’ve picked, have to then assess how much to spend on those cables (answer: now that I’ve learned a bit more about the cabling and the future of HD, if you are looking at a long-term investment in your HD setup, buy the expensive cables, there will be a difference).
Shame on you, HP. It’s not like a debate on what Web 2.0 (or 3.0) really is, where end-users can happily ignore the topic and just enjoy trying out cool new Web sites/services as they launch. For a marketing organization to intentionally go out and cause additional FUD in an already confusing space is pure and simple a bad move. Your job is to answer questions, not create them, and your job is to grow the overall pie, not try to cut out some small piece with such short-term thinking.
Shame on you, HP!