HP in collaboration with Taiwanese manufacturers of electronic components cooperate on the development of smartphones, according to DigiTimes. Stories of HP's return to production pf smartphones are circulating for some time, and plans were also indicted by company's director Meg Whitman in an interview with Fox Business Network in September last year.
According to Digitimes, HP in collaboration with U.S. chain store Wallmart intends to issue 7 inch tablet, which should be in stores before the start of the new school year, and will be sold at a price of only $99.
August 31st marked beta release of HP's open source webOS, as it was scheduled. More than 450,000 lines of code under Apache 2.0 license and 54 webOS components were packed in this beta release. On the webOS official blog HP said “Eight months ago we announced our ambitious plan to make webOS available under an open source license and bring the innovation of the webOS platform to the open source community. We are proud to have hit another milestone with today's beta release.” In this release there will be two new features, Gestures and Card Stack Tabs.
It has not even been a month since the announcement of HP’s decision to kill off the mobile operating system it bought from Palm WebOS. Now we hear that HTC could be considering buying this operating system from HP and starting its own mobile OS. If they do this it would put them in competition with a few companies that they have a long standing relationship with. I am also pretty sure that Google and Microsoft might think twice about stepping in to help (well ok help more) them in their ongoing (never ending) patent battle with Apple if they suddenly found themselves cut out of some of the business they get from HTC.
We also hate to say this but WebOS was not that much of a hit on the market. It had an impact at a time when Android was in its infancy, iOS sill did not have copy and paste and Windows Mobile OS 6… well we all remember WinMobile 6. We also think that now is not the time for HTC to be diving into this as they have quite a few fish in the pan already. The financial impact of buying WebOS, then developing it into something that is marketable and then pushing these products onto a market that is split into roughly two houses (Google and Apple) could end up being too much for the embattled company.
We really hope this is nothing more than a rumor and that HTC remains dedicated to making hardware and does not try to branch out and become its own channel.
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It looks like the cheapest Android Tablet on the market is now the HP TouchPad. Ever since HP announced the death of the WebOS division (the moved into another department) the rapidly changing company has been trying to unload all of the hardware they have sitting around. To accomplish this they dropped the prices on the TouchPad from $499 (16GB) and $599 (32GB) to $99 and $149 respectively. This price has caused something of a rush on them and most of the stores that carried them are all sold out. Now while many are snapping these up, there are some that are not interested in a product that will have an OS that is not going to truly be supported anymore.
Well, have no fear. The gang known as Team-Touchdroid has found a way to get Android running on this hardware complete with full multitouch capability. Team-Touchdroid in combination with the group CyanogenMod (the ones that are responsible for most of the Rooted Android ROMs) have been working hard to make your new inexpensive investment pay off in a big way. Their progress has been amazing; the pair have already gotten 2.3.5 running on the device and now have added the full ten finger multitouch to the party. We are sure it will not be long before they achieve their goal of porting HoneyComb to these now very cheap but hard to find tablets. Check out the video below
Less than a year ago HP bought Palm for their WebOS and Mobile business. At the time HP made the claim that they were going to move forward with Palm and maintain the mobile side of things. Now they want to shut down the WebOS business and (if the announcement is to be believed) either spin off or close down their PC business. Reading the announcement from HP it sounds like they are cutting some dead weight and cleaning up after some disappointing losses. However, if you dig a little deeper you will find that HP is looking to make a business shift. It is no secret that the consumer market (at least the PC and software market) is something of a loss-leader. This means that you expect to lose a little money on your PC systems while making it back in service, and support costs. The problem is that companies like HP are losing their support money to people like Best Buy, Staples, and others who now have their own service departments that they make money off of.
This leaves companies like HP (who bought up Compaq thinking that would help sales) out of touch and losing more money than they should on their PCs. So what do you do when this happens? Well you take a leaf from IBM’s book. You sell off your PC business and shift back to the Enterprise. Here you can sell a support contract for $3-4,000 per unit (and more in some cases). Corporations that purchase servers and server accessories demand these and pay for them willingly. So HPs announcements today are nothing more than a way of saying to the community at large “Hey, wanna buy our PC and Mobile divisions? We do not want them anymore”. I would not be surprised to hear about offers for both departments soon.
Now the question is; can HP really compete with IBM and Dell? If a recent shift in enterprise purchases is any indication HP is in for a rough year.
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