WebOS alternatives

HP webOS is a mobile operating system based on a Linux kernel, initially developed by Palm, which was later acquired by Hewlett-Packard and open-sourced. WebOS uses multi-touch gestures to navigate on the touchscreen. The interface uses "cards" to manage multitasking and represent apps.
WebOS alternatives are:
iOS, Android, Windows Phone
Here are the latest news about WebOS:

2013 HP sold WebOS to LG, launches Android-tablet

HP realized that innovation - is not for it. HP never earned on innovations. HP has become the world's largest PC manufacturer thanks to the excellent logistics and good value for money. A couple of years ago, it tried to be innovative: bought (for big money) mobile platform WebOS and produced the own tablet TouchPad. But it didn't succeed and the production of TouchPad was quickly stopped. And today they are selling WebOS to LG. (BTW LG needs it not for smartphones or tablets, but for TVs). Now HP is returning to what it does best of all - launching an ordinary 7-inch Android tablet - HP Slate 7, that costs just $169. It's no better and no worse than other similar tablets from Asus or Lenovo. But on the back side it has the HP logo - and that still matters. In general, this tablet - is a "can't fail" project, except ...

Except spoiled relations with Microsoft. But it's just business. Producing Windows-tablets now - is more risky affair. Besides, HP's didn't borrow money from Microsoft, like Dell.

By the way, HP has already launched Windows 8 tablet. ElitePad 900 sales started in January. This is a super powerful 10-inch tablet and it costs appropriately - $649.

2011 HP will keep the PC business and produce Windows 8 tablets

HP Windows 8 tablet
As you know, two months ago (already former) head of HP Léo Apotheker announced that the company suspends production of WebOS-based TouchPad tablets and wants to sell its computer business. This idea didn't excited neither company shareholders no stock traders, that immediately dropped HP shares on NASDAQ. Because, perhaps this was a right decision, but if you want to sell your computer business, do not scream that you want to sell it. So, Leo was fired and replaced by the former eBay CEO - Meg Whitman. And she had been thinking for couple of weeks and last friday announced, that HP will not sell its PC business. As for the TouchPad tablet, its production is stopped, but instead, the company will develop tablets for the new Windows 8. Thus, Microsoft has got another old-new friend on the mobile front.

Microsoft recently showed its comeback to the smartphone market having introduced new Windows Phone devices together with Nokia. Now the world's largest computer maker is going to produce the Windows 8 tablets. So, it is likely that the wide variety of mobile operating systems will eventually be reduced to the big three: Android, iOS and Windows.

2011 HP kills TouchPad, WebOS. May spin off PC business

HP TouchPad
Having read this news title you may think that HP has big problems. But probably, it doesn't. On the contrary, these HP steps seem to be very reasonable and impressively radical (for such a big company). So, yesterday, HP hit the information space with several loud news. After the announcement of the 3 quarter financial results (which were higher than last year's), the HP head Leo Apotheker informed that the company stops production of TouchPad tablets and WebOS smartphones. "Sales of the TouchPad are not meeting our expectations" - he said. Indeed, during 49 days since TouchPad launch HP twice reduced its price, but the retailers couldn't get rid of it.

TouchPad vs iPad
HP hoped to create the second iPad - an optimized tablet with own hardware and own operation system - WebOS. But it haven't succeed in creating an ecosystem of developers and apps that could compete with Android, iOS and even Windows Phone. So HP management quickly realized their mistake.

It's more profitable to sell patents than hardware.

It's interesting that HP decided to kill TouchPad immediately after Google's Motorola acquisition. First, it became clear that Android won't die under the patent pressure. Secondly, it became clear that now it's much more profitable to sell patents, than mobile devices.

HP acquired Palm (the developer of WebOS) for $ 1.2 billion last year. With Palm it bought more than 1,500 mobile technology patents. Now, when the Patent Wars started, these Palm patents can be sold for 2 times higher price. Samsung, HTC, LG need them. But the most probable buyer is Amazon, which also plans to create its own tablet. In addition, John Rubinstein, the former Palm CEO, now sits on Amazon’s board

Computers should be produced in China

iPad sales
iPad not only killed HP TouchPad before its birth. It also made a huge impact on the laptop businesses. HP is the world's largest laptop manufacturer, but it already sells less laptops than Apple sells iPads. Remember the chart?

But this doesn't mean that Apple will own the computer market. And this doesn't mean that tablets will kill laptops. This means that Apple competitors (Asus, Acer, Lenovo ...) will cut prices either for laptops or for tablets. And it seems that Apple won't win in this race with Chinese manufacturers.

Manufacturing computers is not profitable any more - said Leo Apotheker. The IBM realized this long ago and sold their computer business to Chinese Lenovo. And apparently, HP will do the same soon.

HP bought Autonomy for $ 10 billion

Leo Apotheker
And now let's remember who is Leo Apotheker. He is the former SAP CEO, who came to HP at the end of last year. And he knows exactly what is more profitable to sell the computers or enterprise software & services. Apparently, the answer to this question is so obvious to Leo that he managed to change the strategy of such a big company so radically.

Following the news about WebOS and TouchPad, HP officially announced the acquisition of Autonomy for $10 billion. Autonomy is the leading enterprise content management and big data management software provider. In particular, Autonomy has 31 petabytes of customer data under management, making it one of the biggest private cloud storage companies in the world.

So HP is not going to compete with Apple, Google and the Chinese manufacturers. HP is going to compete with IBM and Oracle in the enterprise software and cloud computing markets.

2011 Will HP TouchPad become an iPad-for-business?

In April Blackberry Playbook hit the stores. It was the first attempt to wedge in the struggle between the iPad and Android Honeycomb. And it failed. Though Blackberry owns the loyal customer base, the Blackberry Playbook sales were so weak that many experts have started talking about the death of Blackberry. And on Friday, another contender - HP started selling the own tablet - HP TouchPad. And like the Blackberry Playbook, it is focused primarily on business users. So, what result can be expected? HP - is the world's largest computer equipment manufacturer. It has a lot of enterprise customers. It has direct access to all major retailers in the world. HP could easily secure a worthy place in the tablet market, producing tablets on Android or Windows 8 (which comes next year). But the company decided to go with its own mobile operating system - WebOS (developed by Palm).

Yes, this is very good operating system with a lot of positive feedback. Maybe it is more usable and safer than Android. But the problem is that it has the lack of apps in the app store (by the way, that's also the main problem of Blackberry). And that can cause the failure.

In the rest, the HP TouchPad is quite a competitive product with attractive design, bright display, slick interface and, of course, the high-quality hardware (do not forget who is the producer). It has a webcam and video chat via Skype. The prices are comparable to iPad: $ 499 for the 16GB model, $ 599 - for 32 GB (currently only Wi-Fi models are available, 3G will come later).

And of course, HP is focusing on the tablet readiness fo Enterprise: Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync support, password management, remote data wipe, support for secure Wi-Fi authentication, two VPN clients IPSEC VPN and Cisco Any Connect VPN, remote management client MobileIron. Of course, in terms of security and administration, HP exceeds iPad and Android-tablets.