CANALYS CHANNELS FORUM, PERTH, AUSTRALIA: HP’s president of APAC talked up the societal benefits of digital inclusion in areas including education, but cautioned the technology industry must stay on top of growing security concerns.

Richard Bailey (pictured) pointed to HP’s work to improve access to education in India, where the high school dropout rate is 68 per cent. The company launched 48 mobile learning labs in rural areas as part of a goal to connect 6,400 villages (covering some 15 million people) in the next six years.

“Technology brought inside the villages opens opportunities beyond. Every point of contact with technology becomes a path to a better life” for villagers, he said: “So let’s continue to partner together to create shared value, enable our customers to digitally transform and move to more flexible service models.”

A crossover in technologies developed for specific industries holds the potential to open up huge new avenues for growth. Bailey cited the development of VR and augmented reality (AR) for the gaming industry as an example, noting such technologies can be applied to areas including training, retail and design.

However, he cautioned the industry must remain vigilant on security to reap the benefits of technology crossover. As the world becomes more digital and increasingly interconnected, the number of threats will grow and take on new forms, he stated.

The executive also revealed China and India will be the main growth drivers for HP in Asia Pacific, though he noted Japan is also a strong market for the company and Australia is doing well: “There’s growth everywhere, and more in Asia than anywhere else.”