Hewlett-Packard will divide its webOS arm into two separate units that will report to different areas of the company, according to two leaked memos that have made their way onto the Web.
HP acquired webOS as part of its takeover of Palm in 2010. The manufacturer originally had big plans for loading the operating system onto a variety of devices, including tablets, smartphones, desktops and laptops. Following anemic sales performance by the TouchPad tablet, however, HP made the radical decision to end its efforts in webOS hardware.
Now, HP's webOS software assets will find their way into the arms--however welcoming--of its Office of Strategy and Technology. The other parts of the webOS corporate infrastructure, presumably including its hardware interests, will continue as part of the Personal Systems Group, which manufactures HP's PCs, and which likely will be spun off into its own entity under the terms of the company s new strategy.
"We have decided that we ll be most effective in these efforts by having the teams in webOS software engineering, worldwide developer relations and webOS software product marketing join the Office of Strategy and Technology," Todd Bradley, executive vice president of HP's Personal Systems Group, wrote in an email circulated to the webOS developer team. "The remainder of the webOS team, under Stephen DeWitt, will continue to report into PSG."
That email was reprinted by the blog Precentral.net, which included a similar email from Shane Robison, HP's executive vice president and chief strategy and technology officer, outlining the same strategy.
This article was originally published on 09-07-2011