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  (Source: Gigaom)
Computer maker says no to progress, drops another shovel of dirt on webOS's grave

In a further blow to those hoping for a webOS revival Jon Rubinstein, the iconic Palm CEO who supervised the creation of the webOS-powered Pre, has been released from his executive post at Hewlett-Packard Comp. (HPQ).  

I. A Failure of Vision

HP has been on a mess roller coaster ride over the last year shuffling CEOs and even contemplating spinning off the heart of its company -- the consumer PC business.  The change in leadership has also led HP to effectively abandon its hope of being a viable player in the mobile tablet/smart phone space.

The company blew $1.2B USD to acquire Palm Inc. in April 2010, in what seemed like a promising move for both companies at the time.  Palm still had a legion of firm supporters, and while it was no longer the iPhone competitor it was once was (and which Android became) it still had a shot.

That shot was killed by HP's floundering board and hapless new executive leadership.  The webOS product line was officially discontinued in Aug. 2011.  Meanwhile HP seemed to be combing through its ranks removing all the one-time supporters [1][2][3] of webOS.

Seppuku wide
"I didn't know there was such a thing as corporate suicide, but now we know that there is.  It's just astonishing." -- Ex-HP Board Chairman Tom Perkins on the company's struggles
[Image Source: Euro-Synergies]

After HP became the second major company in two years to fire Léo Apotheker from its CEO spot for poor performace, new CEO Meg Whitman reported shopped around webOS to prospective buyers.  But her asking price of $1.2B USD -- what HP had paid for it before it desecrated the remains of Palm -- was reportedly considered laughable by serious buyer prospects like Samsung Electronics Comp., Ltd.'s (KS:005930).

Unsurprisingly no buyer was found.

II. Jon Rubinstein Departs to More Fertile Shores

Today HP has open sourced webOS, essentially giving away for free the product that months before it had hope to get a billion dollars for.

HP was quiet about the departure of Mr. Rubinstein.  They would only say, when reached for comment by The Verge, "Jon has fulfilled his commitment and we wish him well."

Jon Rubinstein
Jon Rubinstein, father of the iPod and Palm Pre [Image Source: CellPassion]

Ultimately this is likely a smart career move for Mr. Rubinstein, who originally gained fame as the creator of the iPod at Apple, Inc. (AAPL).  Mr. Rubinstein has put out solid products at companies who have ambition, companies who have the willingness to take risks in the mobile space -- attributes that are sorely lacking at HP.

Sadly for webOS fans, this is one more sign that the beloved platform is taking its final ride into the glow of the twilight.  As HP reassigns the remainder of the webOS skeleton crew who weren't laid off yet, Mr. Rubinstein's departure serves as perhaps the final reminder that once there was a company named Palm, a company with two decades of bold mobile vision, a company whose final spark of life was extinguished by HP.

(AllThingsDigitals reports that Mr. Rubinstein has been absent from the office for months, in silent protest of Mr. Apotheker's decision to kill webOS, and that HP only now got around to clarifying his status.)

Sources: The Verge, AllThingsD



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RE: sigh...
By Pirks on 1/30/2012 8:30:08 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I wouldnt say it lost. Both were released at $500, both had a fire sale to dump unsold inventory. The difference, Palm was already out of business
You never looked at difference between the products, hence you are blind. I don't care who went out of what, is Palm dead or not, doesn't matter to me. What matters though is that Playbook was killing HP tablet NOT BECAUSE PALM WENT OUT OF BUSINESS or whatever you think up here. It was just much better product overall, I compared web browsing on both and on HP it's often horrendosuly slow while Playbook's UI is as slick as Apple's and even better in some places (multitasking related). Hence RIM killed HP, 'cause if anyone had a quarter of brain - he or she wouold always pick Playbook or iPad over HP. You can say Apple and RIM killed HP tablet together, whatever. Say what you want but I compared both tablets and I know what I'm talking about. Unlike most clueless trolls and clowns like cheesy or sojar.
quote:
RIM has to convince people to BUY it first
Doh, for people like you who defince success as "sale LOTS even if it's an inferior product" this is important, but RIM is more bothered with killing competitors in quality department, which they successfully did in first iteration. They even killed Apple in multitasking and web browsing, two very important areas on any tablet.

What I'm saying is that now with the release of Playbook OS 2.0 they removed a few minor drawbacks the anti-RIM trolls were clinging to. Like native email client, and a few popular games like Plants vs Zombies etc. Now WITHOUT these drawbacks I wonder what the reviews will look like, will anti-RIM trolls AKA "reviewers" find some other drawback (THIS BUTTON IS WRONG SHAPE, SO THIS TABLET IS CRAP DON'T BUY IT!!!) or will RIM kick the last bit of crap out of them.

Hence my saying about things getting interesting now.

In order to sell more Playbooks RIM has to silence the trolls, this requires polishing the product to such a degree they can't troll and whine about wrong shaped buttons and sh1t like that anymore. Looks like RIM finally understood this, I'm intrigued what happens next, who wins, trolls again or RIM.


RE: sigh...
By retrospooty on 1/30/2012 9:05:12 PM , Rating: 2
There are many battles going on in your head that arent going on in reality. That's about all I can say.


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