And HP's strong results also suggest that the company may be the cause of at least some of Dell's recent troubles.
HP reported blow-out quarterly results after the close on Thursday, showing none of the weakness that has plagued rivals in recent months.
HP's pro forma earnings of 51 cents a share after backing out restructuring costs came in a nickel ahead of estimates, and sales of $22.91 billion topped $22.76 billion forecasts. The IT giant's January quarter guidance of 46 to 48 cents a share was ahead of analysts' forecast of 44-cent earnings, but sales guidance of $22.3-$22.6 billion was at the low end of $22.61 billion estimates.
"HP delivered another strong quarterly performance, with balanced revenue growth, good cost discipline, improved margins in key businesses and strong cash flow," HP CEO Mark Hurd said in a statement. "We are pleased with our progress to date, but there is more work ahead of us."
The results were led by 9% growth in Personal Systems, a 12% increase in server sales, a 17% jump in storage sales, and 11% growth in software. Services were up 6%, and imaging and printing 4%. Within Personal Systems, desktop revenue rose 1%, notebook sales grew 23%, and workstations sales climbed 8%. Overall sales increased 7%.