Hewlett Packardâ€™s exit from the tablet market was quite a jolt even though a lot of people already predicted that it was inevitable. One of the fallouts of HPâ€™s move was that the operating system that they bought from Palm for $1.2 billion, WebOS, was suddenly placed in limbo. HP finally addressed the issue when it announced that it has decided to release WebOS as an open source software.
HPâ€™s decision to turn WebOS to the public was a bit of a shock. Most people were speculating that the company will just sell it to recoup some of its investment. Others thought that HP will just totally mothball the OS. HPâ€™s decision leaves many to conclude that it still believes in WebOS and that it will benefit from open source development.
In a statement that it released last week, HP reiterated that it will continue to be an active â€œparticipant and investorâ€ in WebOS and will help keep it alive. HP CEO Meg Whitman even hinted that the company may even revisit WebOS next year and could probably produce hardware for it, possibly another tablet. But she has firmly stressed that people should not expect a smartphone from HP because that aspect of the companyâ€™s business is totally over.
Various analysts have opined that WebOS, despite havingÂ its development kickstarted by the open source community, will never become a huge threat to the current king of the hill â€“ Appleâ€™s iOS. At the very most, they said, WebOS will appeal to generic tablet manufacturers and will likely be used on a number of HP devices.