And so, the fate of webOS has once again been switched hands. From its creator, Palm, which was absorbed by HP, which now has been sold off with the required engineers, patents, and software to LG. It turns out that LG already has a plan for webOS, and that is to power the operating systems of their next line of smart TVs. Skott Ahn, LG’s president and chief technology officer, pointed out that “It creates a new path for LG to offer an intuitive user experience and internet services across a range of consumer electronics devices.” The webOS team will set up base in LG’s new Silicon Valley facilities to start off.
An exact price on the deal has not been released, nor has a release date for any upcoming LG tech that would make use of webOS.
It’s official. Meg Whitmann has saved webOS by cutting the losses and making it open-source. New tablets could be produced, along with software upgrades, however smartphones are probably not in the cards. In an exclusive interview with The Verge, Meg Whittman stated, “The answer to that is yes but what I can’t tell you is whether that will be in 2012 or not,” and that “But we will use webOS in new hardware, but it’s just going to take us a little longer to reorganize the team in a quite different direction than we’ve been taking it in the past.” Is this good news? Yes. Was it expected? No. Do I label this as “FTW’?
Darn yes. Finally a corporate decision that makes sense by HP. Via: HP, The Verge
HP CEO Meg Whitman states that in the coming weeks they will decide whether or not to keep webOS, and that if they do it will be in a big way. But to give you a little excerpt from yesterday’s investor call, below you can see how much money HP lost on the webOS experiment — $3.3 billion when it failed to absorb its fall, and $1.2 billion to buy it in the first place. Ouch.
First, we took a total charge to operating income of $788 million. This was associated with the wind down of our webOS device business. This charge included a net revenue reduction of $142 million related to the sales incentive program, $548 million in costs of sales due to supplier-related obligations and inventory reserves, and $98 million in operating expenses and restructuring charges. Second, as a result of our decision to wind down webOS devices, we have taken an impairment expense of $885 million against the carrying value of goodwill and purchase intangible assets related to the acquisition of Palm.
First of all, the update contains a Camera for Touchpad app, the ability to answer calls from non-webOS phones, a “streamlined” Bluetooth experience (especially with keyboards), support for Ogg Vorbis music files, and online / offline messaging status support, and what HP calls “better performance” and “user interface improvements,” as well as a number of other enhancements and “more robust Skype video calling”. So, they basically made the Touchpad, much, much better. Via: Official HP Palm Blog
What you’re looking at above is the TouchPad Go — in other words, a 7-inch Touchpad. Since HP has killed off webOS for the meantime however, we will not know of this 7-inch webOS powerhouse. Purported specs included a 1.5GHz Snapdragon dual-core processor, a rear-facing camera with flash, front-facing cam, 16GB storage and a 4:3 aspect ratio for the 7-inch screen with a resolution of 1024×768, like the 9.7-inch Touchpad. However, what was going to be the most interesting about this little prototype is the NFC chip that is seemingly included. Oh well. Via: ZooPDA forums
Last week at this time I would have told you I would’t buy a Toucpad. I’d say it’s a pretty good tablet ith the times I’ve had hands-on with it, but actually wouldn’t buy one myself. Well, fast-forward and find that HP is stopping its software dedication to webOS, and thus will discontinue all webOS devices. The HP Touchpad got some pretty good reviews (especially post-update, where tons of bug fixes and speed increases showed up) before that, and now HP has send notices to all of its affiliates asking them to cut down the price to $99 for the 16GB model and $149 for the 32GB model. It is also important to note that the webOS App Catalog is still live, and even though a few devs are pulling their apps, there are always ways to sideload them much like you’d do with Android. Also since the HP Touchpad has incredibly capable specs (9.7-inch 1024×768 IPS screen, 1.2GHz Snapdragon dual-core processor, etc.) that it is perfect for web browsing (the browser rules) and simple note-taking, along with all of the other things you can come to expect of tablets. Also you can be sure modders will port Android to it, in an almost non-buggy state.
Turns out they are incredibly hard to find, but thanks to my vast number of “internet frandz”, I have found one (much like I did with the iPad 2).
So now are you buying a Touchpad? Via: PreCentral
It’s over. HP will be dropping its line of webOS tablets and phones. Keep in mind webOS wasn’t bad at all, but it never caught a true place in the market. HP also let it be known that they will “continue to explore options to optimize the value of webOS software going forward”, which still isn’t good news no matter how you look at it. Goodbye, webOS.
However on the flipside, HP might spin-off their PC business as well, which is another thing to keep a close eye on. And while I truly never liked webOS, I did find it to be visually appealing, and it’s a shame it won’t go anywhere, unless it is sold off to another company willing to handle it. Oh well.
It’s the coming of the credit card-sized smartphone, the HP Veer 4G, which requires an asterisk to mention because it in fact only supports up to basic HSPA, not HSPA+ (which is deemed as 4G to T-Mobile). The $100 on a 2-year agreement gets you a pretty basic package: 2.6-inch 320 x 400 display, an 800MHz Snapdragon processor, a slide-out QWERY keyboard, a 5 megapixel camera, 8GB of internal storage and, of course, HP (formerly Palm) webOS 2.1 as the operating system. Expect the Veer 4G to show up on May 15th. PR after the cut.
Via: HP Palm Official Blog
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So, at the HP Summit in San Francisco, HP CEO Leo Apotheker, publicly stated that the HP Touchpad launches in June, and a beta of webOS for PC will debut later this year, but will run in a browser window. Time for more waiting then.
This is the main problem with iPad competition. Manufacturers announce what seem to be promising devices, then launch them at a date after a rival’s debuts (read: iPad 2) and any chances of getting the head start is lost. Oh well, more tablets will come out later this year, and only then we shall see who has the edge.
Starting next year, all HP laptops will have Windows and webOS. Perhaps the webOS platform would act as “fast boot” operating system or something? Whatever HP is planning, it’s happening in 2012, which is far away. Via: SG