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HP CEO Leo Apotheker, continuing his “HP is cool” tour, spoke to some 4,500 employees at HP Bangalore offices in India where he told employees to “watch out for new products from the US on Feb. 9th.

Apotheker seems to be making good on his earlier pledge to up HP’s mindshare and value by telling a better story.  During his interaction with Bangalore employees Apotheker asked, “Those who think Apple is cool, raise your hands.”  With a majority of the 4,500 employees raising their hands, Apotheker replied, “Get ready to get rid of your iPhones and iPads.”  He then added that there would be real, near-term introductions, “as the hardware is ready.”

"... get rid of your iPhones and iPads."  Did he just say that?  He did.  And to that we say:  Finally!  We finally appear to have a metaphorical team-leading QB who looks like he may actually know how to throw the ball often and long.  You know, run an exciting offense, with a team that not only wants to win but expects to win.  In just four months as HP CEO Apotheker has actually used/held a webOS device, called it cool, correctly said it is the only true multitasking smartphone and called out Apple when it comes to cool.  Needless to say this is a departure from former CEO Mark Hurd’s approach when talking about the future of webOS and devices.   

Bangalore is the first stop of Apothaker’s three day “listening tour” which will also include stops in Mumbai and Delhi where the chief executive is reportedly there to interact with HP employees and hear them out on various issues.  The visit marks the first in ten years from an HP senior manager to India.  

The February 9th, Think Beyond event is shaping up to be quite the day for webOS and gadget fans alike.   The hardware is apparently not only “cool” but also ready and so are we.