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WebOS fate decided - open source but no hardware

Posted: , posted by Scott H.

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WebOS fate decided - open source but no hardware
After an all-hands-on-deck meeting, HP has decided the fate of WebOS. HP is going to open source the mobile operating system. HP also promised to be an active investor and participant in the new open source project, although no new hardware using the OS is scheduled at this time.

This is both an ending and a beginning for WebOS, which HP purchased as part of their acquisition of Palm a year and a half ago. HP has transitioned through three CEOs in that time period, and WebOS has seen varying levels of management support. Perhaps as a result of this on-again off-again interest, phones like the HP Pre3 never got traction in the market, and the TouchPad tablet failed to attract customers until HP held a fire sale to clear out inventory after announcing the end of their involvement in WebOS mobile devices.

It will be interesting to see if the open sourcing of WebOS attracts new interest from OEMs. HP had previously considered either licensing the OS or selling it off, but failed to garner enough interest to do so. HP could in theory pursue the same model as Google has with Android, although that requires a substantial investment in software development, and it’s not clear that a hardware company like HP has could leverage this business model the way Google has.

Any developers or WebOS fans out there that are hoping to tinker with the OS once it’s open sourced?

source: HP via Engadget

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