Alas poor Palm. I knew him Horatio. I was a Palm user from the very beginning. My first post on this blog was a picture taken and uploaded from a Palm Treo 600. I owned a Palm Pilot personal organizer (I and II) in the nineties when Palm created the category, and stuck with the platform right up until my Palm Pre, apparently sensing the end, committed suicide off of my terrace last month.
"HP, a storied brand that was instrumental in expanding the PC industry, announced that its board had authorized exploring "strategic alternatives" for its computer division. That's corporate speak for a sale or spin-off.The Palo Alto tech giant and the industry as a whole have seen a drop-off in laptop and desktop sales and margins, as consumers shift to tablets and smart phones.And yet ... HP also announced plans to discontinue the phones and tablets based on the operating system it acquired through its now clearly ill-fated $1.2 billion purchase of Palm last year. That means it's pulling the plug on its highly promoted TouchPad tablet, less than two months after it hit the market."
I've lost track of how many Palm devices I owned. No doubt I still have contacts in my phone that I entered into that first Palm Pilot that kept being transferred over the years - through the US Robotics takeover and spinout, the Handspring Treo, the Palm Treos 600, 700 and finally into the Pre. I have no recollection who these people are of course, but they are still in there. They have transitioned now through
I had hope that WebOS would survive when HP bought it. Not enough hope to buy another one after the Pre took it's final plunge, but hope nevertheless. It really is a great OS and in many ways superior to and more intuitive than Android. But better technology does not survive years of shitty management.
WebOS is now doomed to be known as the Betamax of mobile computing.
"HP has been hopelessly outmatched in smartphones and tablets despite its $1.8 billion acquisition last year of Palm, whose webOS software was the crown jewel of the deal.
The software powered the fledgling TouchPad tablet and HP-powered smartphones that are being discontinued in Thursday's announcement.The software was well-reviewed, but iPhones and iPads and smartphones running Google's Android operating system—made possible after Apple paved the way—have dominated the fastest-growing parts of the consumer technology market. HP was left in the margins. WebOS smartphones had a worldwide market share of less than 1 percent, according to Gartner.
HP will try to find ways to keep webOS alive, which could include using it in other devices such as PCs and printers or licensing it to handset makers, Apotheker said in an interview. He said he was disappointed with the designs of HP's mobile devices and believed the business would have required too much money to turn around."
Rest In Peace Palm... you had a good run.
BTW - the picture at the top of this post featuring my last three Palm devices, and was taken with my HTC EVO, edited in phone to apply the antique effect before transmitting directly to the blog.
Oh - and to anyone over the last few years who selected a Palm device based on my recommendation... sorry about that.