Goodbye webOS. It was nice knowing you.

by Volker Weber


About a week ago I gave back my last webOS device. And I saw something really interesting: the HP Touchpad running Android. It wasn't really working well. Very early alpha. But it was fast. And webOS was never fast on that machine.

webOS fans will keep on reminding us that many features in current mobiles once originated in webOS. Whether it's Android ICS or PlayBook OS, they all borrow from webOS. But for all intents and purposes, webOS is dead.


Yes, really sad story.

I can remember the we're driving to the munich flagship store of o2, for the release party. To see an old Sonja Kirchberger (it was hard to remind us at the times of the film "venusfalle). And to buy an creepy Palm Pre-.

Last year I went to San Francisco, we went to the MoMa and have to wait until the opening in the morning. So we got a cup of coffee and standing in the line, I saw two people using a Pre 3. I talked to them, and they were HP Web OS software engineers, they didn't know what will happen the next time when they will return in their offices. Another sad story.

But that's all gone, all the possible great future of web OS. It was a really good piece of software, running on creepy hardware.

and now the times, they are a-changing.....

Karl Heindel, 2012-06-25 22:58

My Pre- is still creeping and it serves my daily needs, hm, well. I am not sure about what to buy next...

Christian Tennigkeit, 2012-06-26 00:31

My Touchpad is still serving as a mail and web-slave for my parents (138 years together). They like it. Have to say I am pretty proud of them :)

Hubert Stettner, 2012-06-26 08:32

I'm looking forward to Open webOS on my Pre2. I'm pretty sure, it will happen...

Martin Borho, 2012-06-26 09:23

Since the Touchpad Android version moved to the cyanogenmod mainpage it is getting better every week.
Android ICS is working very well on this Hardware.

But from time to time i boot up the very nice WebOS which is still on the machine... it was so promising ... Rest in Peace WebOS...

Christoph Jung, 2012-06-26 10:07

WebOS/2 ...

Heiko Jabusch, 2012-06-26 14:44

Strangely, I think webOS is far faster than Android at most comparable things, other than boot time. It's a little hitchier in some places, but for the most part, webOS does what it does well, it's missing out on doing a lot of things though. Things that you can sort of do in Android. Maybe. If your Android system functions. The TouchPad runs Android just as well as any other comparable device -- which is to say, that Android pretty much is kind of crappy across all devices.

And to say "comparable device" you're still talking in the $300+ tablet market, even considering the drastic price drops that have happened now that Apple is poised to take over the entire tablet market from anyone who isn't willing to sell their tablets for $100 or less.

Hello, webOS Community Edition. Hello, Open webOS.

Eric Blade, 2012-06-30 04:51

Android 4.0's browser smokes webOS at every major function, from speed and HTML5 standards compliance, to its feature set. Nobody can realistically say otherwise without getting laughed at. Go run Sunspider benchmarks between CM9 and webOS 3.0.5 on the same unit. Then head over to The HTML5 Test. Go ahead, post your results, even.

Now tell me which browser's better.

Comparing other tablets to the Touchpad based on price is like telling people you got a great deal back in 1982 when you bought E.T. for the 2600 back in 1982 brand-new for $0.50...just before Atari liquidated and destroyed the remaining copies because they couldn't sell them. Point being, nobody really cares how great a deal you got. Nobody cares about the tablet pricing model, either, because it's utterly irrelevant when it comes to the Touchpad. It's still outdated hardware (prone to substantial cracking, no less) on a dead platform (to everyone but hardcore users and hobbyists) that ages ever more with every new device and technology that hits the market.

The Touchpad was so-so spec-wise with typically substandard build quality when it came out, and webOS has always been a buggy and slow mess since 2.x. Its own engineers have admitted it multiple times, yet many remaining webOS users continue to plug their ears and anecdotally claim the opposite without so much as a shred of actual evidence to back it up.

I really don't get that, and especially when those same users like to jump on these sorts of well thought-out "Goodbye, webOS" blog posts to knock down other platforms. In Eric's case, he's knocking the very platform most webOS Engineers that formed the heart and soul of webOS in the beginning left to, which is, ironically, Android.

Jonathan Eskind, 2012-06-30 07:35

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