A sign is posted in front of the 3PAR company headquarters in Fremont, Calif.
A sign is posted in front of the 3PAR company headquarters in Fremont, Calif. - 
Listen To The Story


STEVE CHIOTAKIS: The two computer companies vying for
data storage manager 3PAR keep throwing down offers back and forth. The latest? Hewlett-Packard today offered 3PAR $1.8 billion, topping an earlier offer from Dell.

Marketplace's Amy Scott now on how it's a game of ping pong to one, get in a specific type of tech game. And to, two, to keep the other behind.

AMY SCOTT: Getting dizzy yet? First Dell scored a point when 3PAR accepted its bid for just over a billion dollars. Hewlett-Packard came back with a sweetened offer. Dell matched it. And now HP has upped the stakes again with a counter-bid for $1.8 billion.

ROB ENDERLE: And now we have a straight-on, bare-knuckles fight.

And there goes my analogy. Tech analyst Rob Enderle says both companies are desperate to build their business -- storing data and delivering software over the Internet, so-called cloud computing.

But Enderle says the companies are equally interested in depriving each other of that advantage.

ENDERLE: This is both an acquire and a deny for both companies. Both of them want this technology relatively desperately, but both of them also don't want the other company to get it.

Enderle says victory could also give the winner an edge against other competitors. He expects Dell to volley before long.

I'm Amy Scott for Marketpalce.