In case you're wondering: Why Windows 10 Phone, HP?

This isn't going to be a long read. The simple answer, and this is a guess, is that HP sees three things. 

  1. Windows 10 development is reportedly significantly easier than for 8/8.1. That should induce some developers to prep versions that run on all Windows 10 systems.
  2. Microsoft may have dumped Project Astoria, a dev kit to help Android app devs port to Windows 10, but Project Islandwood, a similar dev kit for iOS apps, is still on the workbench, and the iOS app ecosystem is significantly more cultured than Google's.
  3. HP has a very old relationship with corporate culture. HP can see the writing on the wall, and it's screaming CONVERGENCE = LOWER COSTS. 

It should come as any surprise that companies would prefer to adopt an ecosystem that gives them the most control, the most integration, and the most efficient workforce for the lowest possible outlay. That's exactly what the HP Elite X3 is all about, and HP sees the potential quite clearly. They don't even care if they sell fewer traditional enterprise-grade desktops. Those are loss leaders. If they can get in on the ground floor, nay, BE the ground floor of this hot new segment, they can cement their dominance and exert control over the formation of the new segment. 

Word from MWC last week was that an Elite X3 kit with optional laptop "dumb terminal" will cost much less than a smartphone and laptop, and the buyer gets both in one purchase. The dock comes with the handset, so just add a Monitor/Keyboard/Mouse combo kit for a few hundred more and you've completely outfitted one employee at a lower cost, reduced the time IT works on that employee significantly, cut down on the potential for shadow IT, and don't have to adopt any kind of lame BYOD policy. Sure, some people will complain, but I'm sure they'll pick their paycheck over their smartphone. 

For the coup de grâce (if you think I'm misspelling it, look it up), HP has developed Workspace, something of an app store for virtualized desktop applications to run over a network to the device, though real details aren't yet available. I do know that HP Workspace requires a subscription fee, so it's unlikely that any consumers who are able to get a hold of one of these magnificent* devices will be able to afford to use it. All that will remain to be seen later this year when HP starts rolling them out. 

* early reports from presser hands-on periods have suggested it's marvelous, but time always tells the truth when it comes to smartphones.