With former HP CEO Leo Apotheker out of the picture, Meg Whitman is stepping up to the plate -- but the newly affirmed chief executive will follow Apotheker's lead on webOS and PCs. Whitman mentioned both by name during a call this afternoon, as part of a long list of businesses that she says HP will continue to invest in. That's not a reprieve for webOS or Windows consumer hardware, though, because she added that the Personal Systems Group is still likely going to go, with the board of directors scheduled to make a decision by the end of the quarter about how, precisely, it might be spun off or sold. So in other words, despite new management, we're looking at the status quo.
That's not to say that HP's new bosses doesn't have some notions of their own -- during a Q&A session following Whitman's announcement, she suggested that there might still be some wiggle room: "I am supportive of the actions announced on August 18th, but I am now deeply involved and will review the initiatives." Furthermore, it's looking strongly like a spin-off is the way PSG will go: AllThingsD spoke to Ray Lane, executive director of the board, who said "We will not sell." Later on the call, he said the decision process would be fairly simple: "If it can't be stronger on the outside then it stays inside. It'll be the easiest decision we ever made -- investors and customers will tell us."
Whatever happens, though, Whitman says we'll probably see it happen soon: "The best thing we can do is get to a decision on PSG as fast as possible. It's not fine wine, it doesn't get better with age. We've got to get to a decision and communicate it."