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HP Still Deciding About webOS

David Gilbert by

HP CEO Meg Whitman

New HP CEO, Meg Whitman called a meeting of HP and Palm employees to tell them the fate of the webOS mobile platform – and then decided not to.

Back in August, HP shocked the world by killing the TouchPad and Pre smartphones which ran the software. HP acquired webOS when it purchased Palm in April 2010.

Whitman, who took over from Léo Apotheker in September, was believed to be ready to reveal the fate of webOS last night, but put the decision off, reportedly telling the meeting: "It's really important to me to make the right decision, not the fast decision,"

According to The Verge, she went on to say: "If HP decides [to keep webOS], we're going to do it in a very significant way over a multi-year period,” adding that "it's a very expensive proposition, but HP can make that bet."

HP is currently in turmoil and only ten days ago revealed that it would be keeping its PC division rather than the initial plan of selling it off. A decision on webOS is expected in three to four weeks, with the decision dependant on what direction the company will go with the PC business and what it will do with the newly-acquired Autonomy.

According to the sources at the meeting, Whitman was speaking about webOS on tablets rather than on smartphones, because "things get more complicated if you add in phones."

So no firm decision has been made by HP regarding webOS, or indeed about its PC business and Autonomy, and the next three to fours weeks could be the most important in the company’s long and distinguished history.

Source: The Verge

Go to comments


November 9, 2011, 11:30 pm

WebOS is the most user friendly, logical & well designed OS that I have ever used. I would go so far to say that it is the only OS that can take the competition to Android and iOS...and beat them.

Killing it of has to rank up there with one of the most ill advised CEO decisions since Nokia's HR called Stephen Elop. Meg Whitman, if you have any sense you'll pull it from the ashes and back it with your bottom dollar then give it the long term press and backing it will need to prosper.


November 10, 2011, 3:22 pm

The problem with WebOS was more a matter of sales and distribution.

When the first Palm Pre was released in the UK, Palm made the completely and utterly ridiculous decision to release exclusively through O2, who were also the exclusive carrier for the iPhone. Conflict of interest much? This meant that the Pre didn't get any advertising because O2 were focussed solely on the iPhone

Fast forward to the Touchpad and you have another wasted opportunity by it taking so bloody long to be released! I can clearly remember reading that the Touchpad was on sale and thinking "I thought that was released months ago?"

HP either needs to take WebOS seriously and put some grunt behind it, or they need to just sell it off to someone who knows what the hell they are doing!

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