HP TouchPad

HP has announced that it will “discontinue operations for webOS devices” including smartphones and the recently launched HP TouchPad tablet. The news isn’t a total shock, given the lukewarm reviews the TouchPad received and recent reports that it’s not selling very well. But it is still a rather dramatic move from a company that had recently been pushing webOS as a huge part of its future plans.

In other words, we probably won’t see webOS software for the PC, webOS netbooks, or other devices anytime soon.

HP is still seeking ways to use webOS though, since the company did spend $1.2 billion to acquire the software when it bought Palm last year. Perhaps that means HP will look to license webOS to other device makers — but if HP can’t make webOS devices popular, how will any third party companies that would license the operating system?

The news comes on the heels of reports that HP is in talks to acquire enterprise software maker Autonomy and spin off the PC division as a separate business. HP confirmed that it’s considering those options.

In other news, if you thought the TouchPad tablet was already getting cheap, just think how low the prices are likely to fall after HP cuts off all support for the platform. On the other hand, it looks like HP still plans to bring a new version of the TouchPad to market, at least in France. A 64GB model with a faster 1.5 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon dual core processor will ship in France in the coming weeks. The current model tops out at 32GB and has a 1.2 GHz dual core Qualcomm Snapdragon processor.

In a conference call today, HP said it will shut down its webOS hardware units in the fourth quarter of 2011.

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12 replies on “HP pulls the plug on webOS: Goodbye TouchPad, Pre”

  1. i have owned hp products since the 70’s with my hp 25c calculator, it was the king at the time.  Since, I have owned printers and pc’s.  I just bought a touchpad and this news is rather concerning about how hp conducts business, would I trust them for future products?  Don’t know but I would think twice, once burned twice shy.  It seems like hp has no clear direction, buy Palm launch webOS doesnt go as planned – kill it.  Now they are going to jump into the enterprise market – gee, if you are a large corporation would you trust that they will be in the business to support your newly purchased product or could they just say “oh well, that didn’t work…” and shut things down.  Strong corporations don’t lurch from one thing to another – to me that’s a sign that things are not very stable or good at hp.  Can you imagine how retailers feel who purchased the touchpads?  I have to assume there will be a huge price drop incentive coming.  And whats with shipping 64gig units to France?  Some weird things happening…..

  2. Hope that webOS can be released generally.  From what I have heard, it is competitive.

  3. I have a Touchpad and a Pre. I will use them till they wear out. I really like using both of them. I will use them till they no longer work (or a really good deal comes along to replace either or both).

    Perhaps they ‘spin off’ the phone and tablet products into a separate company and call it ‘Palm’? 🙂

    I think I will stay away from HP in the future.

  4. Hey HParsons you still think the numbers don’t ad up?

  5. As i said on an earlier story about the TouchPad, noone besides Apple has enough rabid fanboys to make me confident that a Smartphone/Tablet OS Platform can be sustainable with just 1 company making devices, no matter how much inovation and engineering went into it.

    Without at least a 2nd Company having products using the software SHIPPING, i will not buy “the next big thing in mobile computing”, because being dependet on a platform with just 1 vendor can be a dead end.

    And wouldn’t you know it, just a few weeks down the road, BAM it IS a dead end.

    Just another example why i don’t see any future for projects like FusionGarages 2nd attempt, the GridOS on the Grid10 and Grid4.

    1 devicemaker commited to the platform, and their logo isn’t a fruit with a bite taken out of it = the plafrom is not future proof enough.

  6. HTC might license or buy webOS as leverage and not be dependent on Android, especially now that Google bought Motorola.  

    But what concerns me most is the fate of HP PCs.  I usually end up purchasing HP laptops (latest is dm1) due to design and good value for the specs.  Hope it is spun off as its own entity instead of another company buying it.  

  7. I bought my touchpad based on the commitment by HP for Web Os support.  Do I have any legal grounds to recover $$$$?

    1. As an individual, I’m not sure that you do. But I wouldn’t be surprised if HP makes some sort of gesture soon to compensate TouchPad customers in some way… or if some lawyers start putting together a class action suit. 

  8. Aside from Bono & The Edge wasting over a hundred million on some Broadway farce — HP is the King of flushing money down the toilet.

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