Compaq disappearing for good into HP's shadow

"Compaq... Now that's a name I haven't heard in a long time..."

"Compaq... Now that's a name I haven't heard in a long time..."

The name Compaq may soon be a thing of the past. Just one year after completing its acquisition of Compaq, HP is downplaying the Compaq name in its business products, arguing it is easier to sell one brand to corporate customers. Alex Gruzen, the head of the company's notebook and handheld computer unit, said: "Over time, all of your business products will become HP. Gruzen said it will be easier for HP's corporate sales force if all its enterprise products carry the same primary brand name. The move represents a significant shift for HP, which had kept the Compaq name on in many of its business products, noting the brand's better adoption and reputation among IT managers when it came to laptops and desktops. In the commercial notebook market, for example, Gruzen said that Compaq machines outsold HP counterparts by a ratio of three to one. But in a crop of business-targeted portable computers announced this week, the Compaq name will show up only in a small line of type near the model number. The first model in the line, the HP Compaq NC4000 - a thin and light notebook based on Intel's Pentium-M processor--does this and emphasizes the HP name instead. In addition, the tech giant's next tablet PC, which is in the works, will feature the HP brand, rather than the Compaq name that adorns the current model, Gruzen said. "What makes sense going forward is one HP brand," he added. The company said in March that it would do away with the Evo name, one of Compaq's best-known subsidiary brands. With the move, the Compaq name becomes more of a model name, filling the role that Evo had played. HP has already dropped the Compaq brand from many products, renaming the company's popular iPaq handhelds and ProLiant servers as the HP iPaq and the HP ProLiant, respectively. The Compaq corporate name all but disappeared as soon as the merger was closed, with one of the only concessions being the change of HP's stock ticker symbol from "HWP" to "HPQ". Ina Fried writes for News.com