HP Palm WebOS Event Open Thread

HP palm webos tablet teaser HP Palm's WebOS event is going down today in San Francisco. Palm's website has now been replaced with the countdown timer.

The presentation kicks off at 10 AM Pacific (1 PM Eastern). Check back here for continuing coverage and updates.

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HP May Have Abandoned WebOS in Smartphones

Gekko @ 2/9/2011 6:04:15 AM # Q
HPQ: Caris Skeptical Of Palm OS Effort

Caris & Co. analyst Robert Cihra today reflects on Hewlett-Packard's (HPQ) upcoming event for media on February 9th, which is expected to be the unveiling of a new tablet computer based on the Palm operating system HP picked up with the acquisition of the company of the same name last year.
Cihra, who has an "Average" rating on HP shares, and a $52 price target, writes that he remains, "skeptical HPQ can convince consumers and developers that webOS is even relevant." Cihra notes Apple's (AAPL) iPad is hurtling toward a refresh in the coming months, and "Research in Motion's (RIMM) Playbook (launching March) can at least target is over 55 million BlackBerry subscriber base (e.g., insta-BES integration for security-focused enterprises.)"
Cihra expects HP will make a go of it in smartphones with Palm OS as well, but "we get the sense HPQ may already be conceding the smartphone market, except we can't see how a tablet platform can even hope to succeed without a large complementary smartphone base."
Cihra notes HP has a "poor track record" outside PCs and printers.
Cihra's overall view of the company is that its cyclical rebound, as he terms it, has now "peaked" across most business units. He sees year-over-year revenue growth "moderating, perhaps noticeably with PCs but also our expectation x86 server revenues decelerate meaningfully against much tougher unit and ASP comps" after a big bounce forms servers based on Intel's (INTC) Nahalem chip.
Cihra models HP making $132.4 billion in this fiscal year ending in October. That's less than the consensus $132.93 estimate on the Street.
HP shares today are off 4 cents at $47.29.


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My predictions for today's event:

hkklife @ 2/9/2011 8:47:20 AM # Q
-Verizon Pre 2 "re-confirmed", "available on Feb 24th" (give or take a week).
-One more WebOS smartphone announced, likely a 800x480 candybar all-touchscreen flagship device (likely breaking compatibility with most existing apps) OR a smaller, all-touchscreen Pixi replacement

-Topaz 9.7" tablet announced, "to be available in the coming months" but with one carrier exclusive version arriving much sooner "in the coming weeks". Wi-fi version's general retail availability will greatly lag the 3G versions, giving Apple more time to continue dominating the B&M tablet mass market.
-Smaller 7" "Opal" tablet announced, "to be available in the coming months".

-Vague references to WebOS 2.0 upgrades being rolled out "in the coming months" for legacy devices. Essentially pointing the finger at the various carriers for updates.
-Announcement of the full version (editing) of QuickOffice for WebOS 2.0 devices ONLY.
-Lots of huffing & puffing about integration with HP's Touchsmart PCs and various printers, cloud/music services etc. Possibly some kind of desktop sync component announced for WebOS (likely only for certain lines of "connected" HP PCs).

In short, expect to hear "in the coming months" a LOT today!
Pilot 1000->Pilot 5000->PalmPilot Pro->IIIe->Vx->m505->T|T->T|T2->T|C->T|T3->T|T5->Zodiac 2->TX->Verizon Treo 700P->Verizon Treo 755p->Verizon Moto Droid + Verizon Palm Centro-> Verizon Moto Droid X + Palm TX

RE: My predictions for today's event:
HyperScheduler @ 2/9/2011 9:12:07 AM # Q
Thank you very much.

Just wondering-- why doesn't HP immediately push out their 2.0 update immediately, to every single WebOS owner who wants it?

I realize that this question applies to Android, as well.

But in the big picture, why the delay?

Coming from the iPhone perspective, it seems odd that people need to wait to receive ANY sort of update at all.

Please share the reason if you happen to know.

RE: My predictions for today's event:
hkklife @ 2/9/2011 10:05:21 AM # Q
1. HP wants to leave behind the old, underpowered WebOS 1.x devices

2. HP wants to leave behind the old Palm-branded devices

3. HP has to deal with the various carrier certifications for OS updates

4. The amount of unbranded, non-carrier-tied unlocked WebOS devices worldwide is relatively small...I would not at all be surprised to see these devices get left out of the OS upgrade process entirely.

5. If they drag it out long enough, all of the original WebOS device owners will have totally expired 2yr contracts or be at the 12-18month annivesary of their 2yr contract signing and be eligible for a subsidized upgrade. They will of course then try to get all of those people to just buy a new device entirely.

6. The original Pre and Pre Plus were so shoddily made (from a hardware standpoint) that these devices are probably all in various states of decrepitide with many units failing daily. If tHP can drag out the process long enough, there will be hardly any WebOS 1.x devices LEFT in the field to warrant a costly upgrade development/testing/rollout process.
Also, the Pixi's weak hardware might make WebOS 2.x just unfeasible from a performance standpoint, and a lot of those users have probably gotten frustrated with the lack of wi-fi, under-sized RAM and weak CPU/screen.

For a similar example, just look at the huge numbers of Android devices that are still launching with OS versions that are several generations behind and will never see an update from the manufacturer. Apple's iOS update schedule for their iPhones & iPod Touches is quite solid---you pretty much are guaranteed exactly 2years (or a bit more or a bit less, depending on generation) of solid updates from when your particular model was launched and then they immediately EOL that line. HP/Palm could gain a lot of goodwill by committing to getting every single old WebOS device onto 2.x in some way, shape, or form.
Pilot 1000->Pilot 5000->PalmPilot Pro->IIIe->Vx->m505->T|T->T|T2->T|C->T|T3->T|T5->Zodiac 2->TX->Verizon Treo 700P->Verizon Treo 755p->Verizon Moto Droid + Verizon Palm Centro-> Verizon Moto Droid X + Palm TX

RE: My predictions for today's event:
Gekko @ 2/9/2011 1:11:13 PM # Q

so you got -

1. an iPad wannabe.
2. a warmed over Pre.
3. a warmed over mini-Pre.

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3 Devies: Veer, Pre 3, HP TouchPad

mikecane @ 2/9/2011 9:05:20 AM # Q
Dig it! HP's ineptness leaked it all!

webOS in all Sizes! (New Devices!)

RE: 3 Devies: Veer, Pre 3, HP TouchPad
palmato @ 2/9/2011 11:18:00 AM # Q
Touchpad available only this summer... can't believe it!
Hey Admin: Why do we have to keep two profiles?
RE: 3 Devies: Veer, Pre 3, HP TouchPad
LiveFaith @ 2/9/2011 11:22:20 AM # Q
Pat Horne
RE: 3 Devies: Veer, Pre 3, HP TouchPad
hkklife @ 2/9/2011 11:41:39 AM # Q
A bit underwhelming on the specs, especially on the smartphone side, but basicaly as anticipated.

But not available until the summer? FAIL, FAIl, FAIL in every aspect. Today's announcement is not only to give a a total Osborne effect to the feeble lineup of existing WebOS devices, but basically just ceded the tablet & smartphone market to Apple.

From CES '11 through today, I cannot recall a period of time when so many facepalming, head-shaking disappointments occured from so many different companies.

I am now UTTERLY convinced that the leadership of Google, HP, and all of the various hardware & software partners are all colluding to let Apple own the entire mobile industry.
Pilot 1000->Pilot 5000->PalmPilot Pro->IIIe->Vx->m505->T|T->T|T2->T|C->T|T3->T|T5->Zodiac 2->TX->Verizon Treo 700P->Verizon Treo 755p->Verizon Moto Droid + Verizon Palm Centro-> Verizon Moto Droid X + Palm TX

RE: 3 Devies: Veer, Pre 3, HP TouchPad
mikecane @ 2/9/2011 4:58:03 PM # Q
It's clear that webOS 3.0 is not finished. Just like webOS 1.0 wasn't.

Maybe they felt they had to take the shot to have the lead time to woo developers.

But after what Apotheker said the other week, I really expected the TouchPad to be in stores *next month*.

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Gekko @ 2/9/2011 12:57:41 PM # Q

they'll sell dozens!!!

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So they killed the Palm brand name?

Gekko @ 2/9/2011 1:01:15 PM # Q

"Let the name of Palm be stricken from every book and tablet. Stricken from every pylon and obelisk of Egypt. Let the name of Palm be unheard and unspoken, erased from the memory of man, for all time."

RE: So they killed the Palm brand name?
HyperScheduler @ 2/9/2011 1:21:26 PM # Q
This is the ULTIMATE question.

My fellow Palm-ers (former and present), is this the true death-knell of Palm?

By the way, I wish WebOS and HP extreme success. I am just focusing on Palm for a moment.

Is Gekko correct to employ such spiritual language? If this date--February 9, 2011--marks the absolute elimination of Palm, then the metaphysical language utilized by Gekko must be, well, correct. . .

RE: So they killed the Palm brand name?
mikecane @ 2/9/2011 4:56:33 PM # Q
Yes, the Palm name has been erased. Progress is cruel.
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so i guess this is it?

Gekko @ 2/10/2011 7:33:13 AM # Q
RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/10/2011 8:29:26 AM # Q

"For Palm Pilot owners, the standard applications, called To Do List, Expense, and Date Book, are magic shields that hold back the evil forces of chaos, forgetfulness, and midweek senility." - Steve Casimiro Fortune

"Ok a little perspective here. For quite a few years now these little devices have been with me everywhere I go. They've saved my bacon on more than one occasion and have the outline of my life. My contacts contain my associates and friends, my calendar shows the outline of days gone by and days to come, my notes contain simple thoughts to grand ideas, and it even holds pictures that tell thousands of stories. These little devices have been indispensable for some and almost like a friend to others. Though it is simply an electronics device devoid of thought and personality it has over the years been the bearer of so much information about who we are and who we want to be. With the above thoughts in mind it is no wonder we've become attached to the way we view this information. Many of us feel a loyalty to Palm and expect a certain amount of mutual respect and trust when it comes to our devices design. I have a feeling many of us feel they have betrayed and feel that trust has been abused. This is why many of us are so vocal. Perspective is a necessary vision and change is always good, but can be unpleasant at times, but this is only an electronics device. We'll still be the same people with the same plans, associates, and friends whether this device is a dud or not." - superdork

"I've got about 450 (Contacts). I could probably delete 50 without much thought. But one of the advantages of keeping this kind of data in a database is the historical perspective. Just because I don't contact someone today, doesn't mean I won't want to look them up next month, or next year. The ability to answer questions like "Who was that guy I talked to about the wireless security software last year?" or "What was the number of that good looking soccer mom from my son's team last spring?" can be invaluable, even if I haven't talked to the person recently." - meyerweb

RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/13/2011 5:28:24 PM # Q

This week saw significant and contrasting twists for the legacies of two operating systems that had their roots in the heyday of the PDA. HP revealed that it is killing off the Palm brand, and Nokia announced that -- while it would continue to "harvest" less capable versions of the Symbian operating system on its basic handsets -- it would shift away from the operating system in its smartphones in favor of Windows Phone 7. In some ways, the demise of the Palm brand and the loss of Symbian's last major supporter at Microsoft's hands represent the end of an era.

Palm's salad days included the creation of Graffiti, the category-defining Pilot, and the sleek and popular Palm V. However, it suffered under many troubled owners and strategies, including the separation of and failed reunion with the Palm operating system. At the start of the company's final chapter, CEO Jon Rubinstein pointed to the company's focus on mobile as its main differentiator, but mobile wasn't enough to keep the company afloat.

Now, with its software and handsets inside HP, the group formerly known as the Palm Global Business Unit is working hard to bring webOS to products that include PCs and printers. That's a long way from today's mobile handset so long that one may question whether apps developed for such devices will have much relevance for a smartphone but the operating system that was once laser-focused on pocketable products is living on through devices that are anything but.


RE: so i guess this is it?
AdamaDBrown @ 2/16/2011 10:48:53 AM # Q
Nokia's making a big mistake going with Windows Phone 7. Nokia has produced good hardware, but Microsoft has made some crucial fumbles on their platform over the last 2 years or so, the biggest being breaking compatibility for Windows Mobile. With iOS and Android dominating buzz the way they are, I have a hard time seeing any set of moves that brings Microsoft back into major competition.

Android has taken over the market strategy that originally allowed Microsoft to unseat Palm as the leader in smartphones: offering a broad variety of available hardware for almost every taste, in order to out-compete a "one size fits all whether you like it or not" design.

In essence, the Apple versus Google fight is a new and updated version of the old Palm versus Microsoft fight. You have the "in" device, whose manufacturer has very stiff and stubborn ideas on how to design and sell, versus the massive cloud of less popular devices, but ones that can fill every niche.

Of course the analogy breaks down because Apple is about a dozen times better at market-savvy than Palm ever was. Of course, Android is a much better platform on the whole than Windows Mobile was, particularly the touchscreen versions.

But whatever way you slice it, I'm not sure how Microsoft expects to break back into the market. First, they're starting with the problems of a completely new platform, in an already saturated and cut-throat environment. What advantages does WP7 offer against Android or iPhone?

Second, with the platform break they effectively told their entire installed base and all their developers--who might have held with them long enough for Microsoft to catch up to the other two platforms--to go take a flying leap.

Last but not least, as much as they gradually evolved and tweaked their way into the top spot a few years ago, Microsoft has a habit of missing what could be golden opportunities. The value of a fast, easy way to download and install applications from a mobile device has been obvious since way back when PocketPCs having WiFi was a big deal. I remember wishing for just such a thing back as early as 2003-2004, and it should have been even more evident around 2005-2006 when devices started getting more untethered via cellular.

Being the first to have a wireless app library could have put Microsoft in the driver's seat earlier, and considerably blunted the impact of the iPhone on their market. But they missed that one. And I have a feeling they'll miss the next one too, unless they get their thinking considerably more outside the box than they have.

RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/16/2011 11:37:32 AM # Q

ADB - did you get your Droid yet?

RE: so i guess this is it?
gmayhak @ 2/16/2011 1:36:01 PM # Q
This could be a big boost for android app distribution...

Tech Center Labs

RE: so i guess this is it?
hkklife @ 2/16/2011 2:06:56 PM # Q
No, it will just end up being yet another fragmented bit of the mini-disaster that is the Android market.

Since its promising roots, I am starting to see a lot of the "same old sh!t" shenanigans on the Android market as we had in the bad old days of PRCs and whatnot.

We have developers like Gameloft & EA who "launch" a title on the Android market (or run a big 99 cent sale to boost sales) and then surreptitiously change the app title or publisher name and essentially lock out that from ever being re-downloaded again. Gameloft did it a while back with Asphalt 5 (I think). EA recently did it with a ton of games they had on sale at Christmas. I have discovered this the hard way after a hard reset when a number of titles could not be redownloaded. Google support is, unsurprisingly, unresponsive and the support email address for EA just gives you canned junk.

I have also encountered the nasty old Palm OS-style "only this device can be registered" and "if you forget to unregister your old device you cannot reinstall this app" stuff that I thought Apple's App Store model did away with.

Furthermore, with Google narrowing the return window from 24hours to 15 minutes, the whole point of refunds became essentially null and void. I honestly only requested one or two refunds ever and that was after finding out that a certain title was incompatible with my device.

But by far the biggest hurdle in Android app distribution is that it's simply too hard to find anything on the market! It's like going to the world's largest thrift shop and having to dig through piles upon piles of stuff to find anything decent. Google's braindead policy of excluding non-phone devices (ie Froyo tablets) from the market isn't helping matters either.

P.S. Nearly a year in, I am now REALLY bummed that Nokia didn't buy Palm. If nothing else, we wouldn't have a bunch of cheap, glossy, thin plasticky devices heading our way.
Pilot 1000->Pilot 5000->PalmPilot Pro->IIIe->Vx->m505->T|T->T|T2->T|C->T|T3->T|T5->Zodiac 2->TX->Verizon Treo 700P->Verizon Treo 755p->Verizon Moto Droid + Verizon Palm Centro-> Verizon Moto Droid X + Palm TX

RE: so i guess this is it?
AdamaDBrown @ 2/16/2011 6:20:44 PM # Q
Gekko, unfortunately not. I'm delaying gratification until money is a little less tight, since I'll have to be boosting my monthly cost by at least $15 to account for the difference between my 200 MB AT&T data plan, and the $30 Verizon one. My next monthly bill is up in about 3 weeks, so I'm going to see if it's feasible then.

It's annoying, because I really miss the Droid Pro.

hkk, I definitely agree with you that the Marketplace needs to be cleaned up more. What's most desperately needed is sub-categories and filtering options. Something to let you ignore the fluff like live wallpapers, ringtones, etcetera.

Yes, there's those who game the system, but frankly that happened at places like Handango and PocketGear too.

RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/17/2011 6:03:33 AM # Q

why not go Sprint? best value bar none IMO.

RE: so i guess this is it?
AdamaDBrown @ 2/17/2011 9:43:39 AM # Q
Unfortunately, out here in the boonies the only natively owned networks are Verizon Wireless and AT&T. If I were to run on Sprint, I'd be roaming on Verizon almost all the time. I personally wouldn't care that much, but as I recall it's still Sprint policy to cancel accounts that spend more than half their time roaming.
RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/17/2011 10:06:27 AM # Q

i've never heard of such a thing. not sure where you live but Sprint coverage is very expansive these days. i would call them and ask. it's worth an inquiry IMO. maybe also it for the free 30 days.

RE: so i guess this is it?
AdamaDBrown @ 2/17/2011 10:16:50 PM # Q
Here's an article on it.


There's no native Sprint coverage within 10 miles of me, according to their maps.

Besides which, the Droid Pro appeals more to me than most of the models I've seen available on Sprint, and far more than anything that AT&T has.

RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/18/2011 4:24:58 AM # Q

that article is 4 years old. the world has changed. call them and save money.

RE: so i guess this is it?
AdamaDBrown @ 2/18/2011 2:33:26 PM # Q
I was still hearing reports of them canceling excessive roamers as of a few months ago. If I'm wrong, I'd be happy to hear it for sure, since Sprint does offer some definite advantages. I wouldn't be able to get the Droid Pro, but the Samsung Epic has definite pluses, like coming with a 16 GB MicroSD card bundled, and a larger, better S-AMOLED screen.
RE: so i guess this is it?
hkklife @ 2/18/2011 6:23:59 PM # M Q

The Epic is a VERY nice phone and I would honestly probably take it over the Evo now on Sprint, especially now that Fro is FINALLY coming to the Epic.

That said, if you have to go with Verizon, the Droid Pro is a solid little unit but web browsing will be quite coarse on that small, low-res screen. How about the Droid 2 Global? 1.2Ghz CPU and a bigger 854x480 screen...and a vastly improved keyboard over the original Droid 1.

RE: so i guess this is it?
AdamaDBrown @ 2/18/2011 8:38:51 PM # Q
Coming off a 320 x 240 screen, I didn't have many complaints using the Droid Pro. I would definitely take the added resolution if I can get it, but I'm not sure that I'd automatically step up to the Droid 2 Global. I'd need to have my hands on it for awhile before I made a definite decision.

Part of the reason I'm fond of the Droid Pro is the single-piece design--I require a keyboard, but I find that I tend to be fickle about sliding keyboards. The only one that I ever found to be a real joy to use was the Samsung i760. Some of the others I've dealt with have been acceptable, but flavorless.

The Droid Pro also has nice touches that I'm not sure if they're replicated on some of the other models, like the lighted USB port.

Something that the Epic has which the Droid Pro didn't, and something I really like, is the availability of directional buttons. Without them it would be hard to do some things requiring precision.

The Droid 2 Global looks interesting, and between the internal memory and my existing cards I wouldn't be any worse off for storage than with the Epic, but the keyboard would make or break it.

RE: so i guess this is it?
Gekko @ 2/18/2011 11:30:19 PM # Q

ADB - just call them and ask. i doubt that Sprint wants to cancel subscribers at this time. today it's all about subscriber retention and growth. you'd have to be a real biitch to get canceled - probably by not paying your bill for months. try it for the free 30 days.
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