HP, the world's largest PC maker, believes that despite the dominance of Apple and Samsung smartphones are too important to the future of computing to ignore.
HP bought Palm and with it the WebOS operating system in 2010 in order to offer its own smartphones and software platform. However, the devices failed to catch on. HP stopped making smartphones in 2011 but looks keen to get back in the game.
Speaking to the Press Trust of India, Yam Su Yin, senior director of the Asia Pacific division of HP's Personal Systems Group said: "The answer is yes, but I cannot give a timetable. It would be silly if we say no. HP has to be in the game," when asked if HP was developing a new smartphone handset.
HP was once somewhat of an innovator in the mobile computing space. It was one of the first companies to start to successfully blur the lines between the PDA and the mobile phone with its rather bulky but rather good Jordana range of products but when the smartphone market started to develop, it lost its way and by 2011 had pulled out.
Back in September HP stated that the smartphone market was too big and too important to ignore. As mobile devices become more and more powerful and more and more affordable, for many consumers -- particularly in emerging markets -- the smartphone could well be the only computer they ever own and their go-to device for all computing and communication needs.
This is one of the reasons the rumors surrounding a low-cost Apple iPhone are growing and growing in intensity. However, at all price points the market is already pretty difficult to crack; for proof, look no further than BlackBerry and Microsoft, whose platforms and devices have so far failed to dent Android's and Apple's sales figures.
"Being late you have to create a different set of propositions. There are still things that can be done. It's not late. When HP has a smartphone, it will give a differentiated experience," said Yam.
And, as the gaps between portable computers like notebooks and truly mobile devices such as tablets, phablets and smartphones continues to close in terms of performance, usability and productivity, the expertise that comes from being the world's biggest computer manufacturer could help catapult HP devices into the limelight and could even help redefine the device category for the second time. Still, expect competition and innovation from Apple, Google and Samsung to be fierce.