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HP CEO: ZOMG, Android to be closed after Motorola purchase!

HP CEO: ZOMG, Android to be closed after Motorola purchase!
HP’s latest CEO, Meg Whitman, has the unenviable task of trying to talk up WebOS after HP dumped it last year, tried and failed to sell it, then undumped it enough to open source the code. WebOS itself had some very nice things going for it, although some have questioned whether fundamental problems in the code base will always hold it back from Android and iOS style performance.

But the main problem is the spectacular string of failures it suffered in HPs hands. The delayed hardware, the under-performing phone sales, and the tablet that was yanked off the market just weeks after it launched.

Speaking at HP’s Global Partners Conference, how do you imagine Ms. Whitman solved this problem? Via an expert appeal to the intrinsic technical superiority of the code base? By some deft marketing of the platform to developers and OEMs? No…instead Whitman chose door number three: scaremongering about Android.

Her pitch is that once Google closes the deal on Motorola, it’s going to decide to close off the operating system to other manufacturers, choosing to pursue the Apple route of controlling everything. We’ve heard this claim before, of course; we heard it from Microsoft and Nokia last year when the Motorola deal was announced. The funny thing is the people you haven’t heard it from: Google or any of the Android vendors.

We don’t want to go too far with this – there’s no doubt that some Android vendors may be concerned about what the purchase of Motorola could mean long-term. But Google’s entire M.O. is to get Android in as many hands as possible. And it’s not just Android – their search business, ad revenue, and various services (like Docs and Gmail) are all predicated on the idea of broad horizontal distribution, not tight vertical integration.

So it seems unlikely that Google will try to cut out its partners. But that’s not the real issue here; the real issue is that WebOS desperately needs someone to talk up its good points – someone to evangelize for the platform and convince people that it’s still worth investing in, despite the string of unfortunate events that have befallen it. If the best thing that HP can say about it is that “the industry really needs another operating system” because Android might someday be closed…it seems unlikely that WebOS has much of a future.

source: channelbuzz via electronista

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