Rumors have swirled for the better part of the past six months of LG's interest in WebOS. Currently, LG offers a line of Android/Google TV-based Smart LED HDTVs as well as lower-end line of proprietary NetCast SmartTVs with the usual assortment of Netflix and other streaming apps baked into the sets' firmware.
The Palm brand is set for a comeback in 2018 according to a new report. Palm smartphones and potentially other devices are expected to debut next year from China based multinational electronics firm TCL.
The news comes from an interview with a TCL marketing manager with the Dutch site Android Planet. The TCL rep did not get into specifics but is quoted as stating that Palm products would be announced in early 2018 and hinted that it would include smartphones.
The piece, which includes quotes and commentary from a number of former Palm employees and engineers, primarily focuses on the efforts of building and launching webOS and the ensuing struggle to market.
History has proven that tossing out a familiar platform that prints money for your business and starting anew isn't easy: just ask Apple and Microsoft, whose next-generation desktop operating systems in the 1990s (codenamed "Copland" and "Cairo," respectively) floundered aimlessly for years before being replaced with other initiatives. The politics of a mobile platform are no different. The entire process can quickly devolve into a holy war, it turns out, never mind the risk of alienating your users and third-party developers — the very people by whom any platform is ultimately made or broken.
On slide # 10 of the multi-page spread, Whitman firmly states that HP "(has) to have a tablet offering. We will be back in that business. We're coming back into the market with a Windows 8 tablet, first on an x86 chip and then maybe on an ARM chip. We'll see."
Slide #13 and #14 discuss HP's message to the remaining people on the WebOS team and the rest of high-profile departures, some of which we have recently covered. Whitman says that "This has been a very rocky period for the former Palm team/WebOS team that we built. And this was not a happy set of occurrences over the last six to eight months. So we have lost some people." She surprisingly even states that "Between August and November, there was no plan."
Long-time PIC readers may recall the story of former Palm CEO Ed Colligan plucking Rubinstein out of his semi-retirement poolside in Mexico (illustrated in this article from 2007) and it's to this tranquil destination that Ruby has returned for "some time off". The "Podfather" is still using his HP Veer and expressed no desire to head north and try to rectify the problems at RIM.
The All Things D article goes on to state that Rubinstein has "no immediate plans" and the departure comes on the heels of his fulfillment of a 12-24 month commitment to stay onboard with HP in the aftermath of the Palm acquisition in 2010.
The article concludes with report that Rubinstein's departure is no great surprise, as he had not been seen on HP grounds after last summer's groundbreaking decision by ex-CEO Leo Apotheker to discontinue HP's WebOS hardware products.
In addition, the company has released version 2.0 of the Enyo developer tool. Enyo 2.0 enables developers to write a single application that works across mobile devices and desktop web browsers, from the webOS, iOS and Android platforms to the Internet Explorer and Firefox browsers – and more. The source code for Enyo is available today, giving the open source community immediate access to the application framework for webOS.
TouchPad users will be receiving webOS 3.0.5. This TouchPad update offers users faster switching in Calendar views, IM presence indicators and faster scrolling in Email, support for HTTP Live Streaming, the ability to easily toggle auto-correction on or off, and an option you can set so that a period will be inserted when you press the space bar twice. Further details can be found here.
Unlocked Pre 2 and AT&T, Verizon, and unlocked Pre 3 phones will receive an update to. For Pre 2, this update brings improvements in Skype voice calling and messaging, and MAP for Bluetooth. For all devices, you'll find Messaging, Calendar, and Contacts enhancements.
The Verge conducted a sit-down interview in with Whitman and Andreessen earlier today about the future of WebOS, both as an ongoing open-sourced project and as the possible basis for future HP Tablet hardware.
For the time being, only a few excerpts from the full interview have been posted. In short, Whitman stated that yes, HP would indeed be revisiting WebOS tablet hardware but stopped short of committing to it in 2012 or later. She went on to state that the team is going to be reorganized in "a quite different direction than we've been taking it in the past". Presumably this will be a much sleeker, highly-competitive piece of hardware compared to HP's mediocre TouchPad that was seemingly launched as a barely-updated response to the 18 month-old first-generation iPad.
HP says they will make the underlying code of webOS available under an open source license. Their desire is for developers, partners, HP engineers and other hardware manufacturers to work on the project to deliver ongoing enhancements and new versions. HP also will contribute ENYO, the application framework for webOS, to the community in the near future along with a plan for the remaining components of the user space.
"webOS is the only platform designed from the ground up to be mobile, cloud-connected and scalable," said Meg Whitman, HP president and chief executive officer. "By contributing this innovation, HP unleashes the creativity of the open source community to advance a new generation of applications and devices."
First off, WebOSInternals has tweeted the news that select Pre 2 owners are reporting WebOS 2.2.4 is starting to trickle out. Skype support for non-VZW Pre 2 handsets is the main focus of this update, along with Bluetooth MAP support and sync improvements to the core PIM apps.
Last week, Whitman told a French newspaper that a decision would be reached within the "next two weeks", though few expected an announcement this soon. Prior to this event, it was exactly one month ago at another all hands on meeting when HP decided to do take more time to determine the fate of the platform.
- HP to Open Source WebOS (9)
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- RE: Anyone else still on Palm...??!? -Tuckermaclain
- RE: Anyone else still on Palm...??!? -Tuckermaclain
- RE: Palm brand will return in 2018, with devices built by TCL -gfunkmagic
- and now... LG opensources WebOS -Poopie
- RE: Anyone else still on Palm...??!? -richf
- RE: The iPhone X reveals why Tim Cook was so mad about Palm -richf
- RE: Anyone else still on Palm...??!? -tl47
- Anyone else still on Palm...??!? -tl47
- RE: Picking up a Pre 3 -tl47
- RE: Palm brand will return in 2018, with devices built by TCL -dagwud
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- HP Veer 4G Initial Impressions
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