I am quite sure that many people are now aware of HP killing their mobile devices and are looking to sell their Personal /Systems Group. I have to admit that I was shocked, no not just surprised, shocked! By now many sites have posted the story and it can be found on This is my Next… and other Tech News Sites. I have spent the weekend thinking about what has happened and trying to wrap my head around this story. I have heard that Leo Apotheker is an “Enterprise” Guy … meaning that is what he specializes in and has been doing for most of his career. Personally, I don’t think he has any vision. No ability to see outside of his little world.
Mr. Apotheker, please don’t be offended, this is merely my opinion. Seriously, how could you take the 2nd best mobile OS [this is true and just for you Ryan] and put it on ice after weakly pitching it? How could you? do you not understand what is happening in the world with mobile computing?
I loved my Palm IIIc and m515. They were great devices … they had problems, but they were the only real handheld for years! They are still being used by some people because they work well and had a simple and easy to use interface. They did lack a decent ecosystem and that was changed with webOS. Palm made beautiful changes to the operating system and several of my friends got Pre’s and Pixi’s. I was waiting on my contract to end so that I could move to an iPhone, by this point in time we had moved to Mac’s. Yet, I was interested, and I grabbed my father-in-laws or friends phone when I had the chance to site down and play with it [that means I was interested in learning about the device because of the OS]. I was not impressed with the hardware. I to be honest still am not. The innovation of the pages concept and then the rumored and proven abilities of “tap to transfer”! Wow! I thought, how awesome that would be if it could be worked across different systems and then HP bought them and then they finished what Palm had started.
But they only finished what was started.
At this point I need to change directions. What I was expecting when HP bought Palm was a rebirth of computing at HP and a move to actually compete with Apple. I saw a future with webOS running on laptops and desktops and mobiles similar to the way OS X has moved into the mobile space [now let’s not argue the semantics]. I envisioned HP being able to dual boot Windows and webOS; and I was not the only person envisioning that happening. I believe, HP brought it up in the first place. I was starting to see a lightweight fast operating system that would be faster than Windows and as secure as the rest of them. I saw tablets, smartphones, touch handhelds [yes very similar to the iPod Touch]; and I saw an ecosystem being built or integrated, that would bring it to parity with Apple. I mean, the computers looked good and were well made [from my personal experience with them]. HP could have spent more time on design even though this doesn’t seem to be a strong point.
Many people know and understand that Apple claims to be a hardware company and they maintain a 30% margin on their hardware and give away the OS [remember that this is a company statement made by Apple]. So, why couldn’t HP start to move in that direction … is it because Mr. Apotheker has no vision? Yeah, and neither do those that work for him. I am so disappointed because Android as much as it is touted an competition to iOS; many technologists that I follow and read feel the same way that I do. Android was just a cheap, bad alternative. webOS was the real threat to iOS. It not only did things differently, but it also did them in a visually appealing way, similar to iOS.
So, my request, Mr. Apotheker, is to bring me on board and give me 3 years before you actually shutter this HALF A BILLION business. Let me have a chance to bring back a group that is failing. I know I have vision and I have a desire to see some really good competition.