NDrive says farewell to webOS | webOS Nation
 
 

NDrive says farewell to webOS 25

by Ryan St. Andrie Sat, 16 Jun 2012 6:04 pm EDT

NDrive says farewell to webOS

A little over a year ago the popular on-device navigation app NDrive finally stepped out of the beta world and arrived in the webOS App Catalog. For many of us that were tired of janky carrier offerings this was a godsend. NDrive was awesome for the simple fact that it did not require a data connection to work as it was entirely on device and only needed the GPS radio on your device. Despite the high price tag - a whopping $50 - it was arguably the best turn-by-turn navigation app available for webOS.

Well, as of yesterday you can no longer buy NDrive for webOS. The developers have pulled the app. "Why have they done such a thing?" you ask. The answer can be found in the email they shot out to their beta testers yesterday. One of our forum users broncot was kind enough to post the full email he received from NDrive to give everyone the heads up. The email is as follows:

Dear Beta Tester,

As you all know, HP has cut development of webOS hardware like the Pre and TouchPad, effectively taking away the only home the mobile operating system has. With nothing else to run on and no other companies using it, the OS will linger on ice unless and until a buyer or licensee comes along. Killing each and every product that uses a particular OS isn't a literal death sentence and HP may want to license it out. But unless that happens, webOS will effectively be lying dormant, and an operating system can start to decompose real fast when it's sitting still, especially in such a viciously competitive market. Developers stop building apps, consumers stop paying attention, and the ones who bought devices before they were de-shelved get bitter because firmware improvements, bug fixes and new software stop coming.

NDrive, being a relatively small software house cannot focus on a dormant ecosystem and therefore we've decided to put on-hold any development and releases on webOS. Although we do believe Palm first, and HP after, have done a great job on differentiating this ecosystem from the leading Android and iOS, we cannot afford to loose resources, time and money on further developments until we have proofs the OS will be kept alive and flourish.

We do appreciate and thank you all your efforts and patience on testing our software and we do expect your understanding on this position.

Best Regards,
NDrive Team

Sad news to say the least, but it is far from unexpected. This unfortunate scenario has been quite common in recent months and will probably continue for the foreseeable future until webOS catches on again (assuming it does... we have to). This one may sting a little more than others for those who purchased it since it was so pricey. Our recommendation is if you did purchase this app try not to Doctor your device or delete the app unless it is absolutely necessary, as you may lose the app forever. All hope is not lost though as the awesome homebrew navigation app Navit is still alive and kicking!

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25 Comments

loose lol

English isn't their first language. Would you like it if people made fun of a grammatical error you made trying to speak in a foreign language?
 
Yeah, really cool there.

I don't know... but lastly all this departures from webOS have me thinking there might be something wrong happening with our platform... o_O
Man! All this is just non sense to me! If you'd ask me (and if -off course- I was billionaire)... I would spend every single dime into making a home for webOS! Is so great! And after -most likely- losing it all... I would be glad to have done it.
LONG LIVES webOS!!!

For the love of Christ would someone please learn the difference between lose and loose! While you're at it, look up effect and affect.

So I downloaded navit never new it existed. But having trouble downloading a map. It says downloading in progress but doesn't seem to be actually downloading. Maybe I'm just impatient and didn't wait long enough but anyone now if there is a problem with navit map downloaded running on the pre 3?

Never mind, did ful reboot while typing last post and it is now downloading.
So how good does this app work? Have Verizon pre 3 and refuse to pay $9 a month for turn by turn navigation. Hoping this will work just as good.

Just remember: every one of these letters that come, there's many, many more who just let apps and updates fall silent until a Twitter post, deleted website, or a news release casually says "we're not supporting webOS anymore". At least they have the good grace to inform us.

They have a valid reason. It's closing in on a year since hardware was manufactured and even if open source is released for the existing Touchpads, it's not enough to sustain the costs.

I had downloaded the beta and never even knew it made it to the app catalog...

This is the reason to make and support open source software.
I don't know what is wrong with webOS. On Maemo (Nokia N900) there are many great open navigation apps (Modrana, Marble, Mappero and others), some of them being updated almost every week, interact between each other by having the same map directory, etc... Now, when one member began his work on a clone of Siri, they even extended functionality in order to take advantage of this new app.
On webOS, there's just Navit. Period.

EDIT: And yes, if you ask, there was also high quality proprietary navigation software that ceased support for Maemo.

...you mean, like Sygic MM 9&10? ;) Otherwise, _yes_ to all.

I was a beta tester too, and got the same letter. Does this mean they are pulling the Pre2 compatible version from the App store?

I paid £50 for this when it came out - can't say I'm too happy about that. It does sum up why people would leave though - I have had to move back to a Nokia E7, as I needed reliable navigation, and this wasn't it.

If there isn't even the promise of new hardware very soon, then I think it's all over for webOS, I think it already is to be honest. No users>no devs> no updates. That's no good for anyone.

There's a nice Homebrew mapping app for WebOS. It's actively being developed.

http://www.webosnation.com/google-maps-72ka

Sounds good.

Quick question. Does it or will it in the future do turn-by-turn GPS satellite navigation without having to rely on a network signal (eg 3G or GPRS etc) like Navit?

I give up! After evangelizing WebOS since 6-6-09 I am retiring my Pre 3 tomorrow for a Lumia. This has been torture, I tried to hold on. Like those Apple believers did in the mid 90's. Except WebOS is no Apple, Meg Whitman is no Steve Jobs. And I must say it truly truly makes me sad! I will hang on to my Touchpad until the Windows 8 tablets start rolling out. But each time I need to swipe a card to the side to use a different app and can't I will rue the day Leo Asspecker was born. Good bye to WebOS Nation and all the great people that have made hanging on this long even possible. Good bye multi tasking, good bye Palm. I hate it when the good guy doesn't win.

It's hard to understand why people blame the CEO for dismal sales. It seems as he maybe could have hung on and took a few hundred thousand units back and tossed all the units being built in the factories in the ocean, but to what end?

Whitman could have easily kept the program in tact and sat on hundreds of thousands of unsold inventory but she didn't do that either.

Another way to look at it is that HP spent a TON of money so people didn't have to buy Coby tablets.

Everyone that bought a $99 Touchpad should be thanking HP, not cursing them.

The Touchpad was priced lower that the competition even at full price. It was a top of the line device with it's own OS. Many people now have pretty much free Touchpads and should be thanking their lucky stars.

Go look up $99 or $150 tablets and see what is offered.

He wasn't blaming the CEO for dismal sales. But Apotheker decided (without consulting the board) to not stick at it with webOS to make it fly like Hurd would have. That is the work of an ignorant, first class jerk.

I wonder if the Ndrive company would be kind enough to "donate" or share the "maintenance and development" of WebOS Ndrive with the WebOS homebrew community?

At the moment WebOS is in a transition until openWebOS gets implemented later this year.

In my view during this period it would be nice if webOS and nDrive users had the reassurance of being able to restore their nDrive/Beta 6 software and maps they paid for, in the event of their Pre 3 being hard reset or WebOS doctored.

I have a Pre 3 and am based in the UK. I use both nDrive Beta 6 and Navit, alternately, since the former's GPS doesn't work properly around GMT, basically north and south of London. Navit is nice but I understand currently it doesn't have post (zip) code and traffic information features.

(Also would the nDrive company maybe consider giving a credit voucher to those no longer able to use nDrive on webOS they paid for to buy a version on a different platform eg android?)

I think they should make some recompense - I paid a lot of money for the app on my Pre2, it never fully worked, received no updates of merit, and cost a mint.

We have no mission though. Just another reason to move on I'm afraid.

"kind enough"? Just because HP couldn't turn a profit with webOS and they decided to make webOS open source doesn't mean that is what everyone should do.

They have other products on other platforms, if they "donated" this, their competitors would have access to their source code and their IP. A silly thing to do in my, and obviously their, opinion.

Hi,

I think the new google maps app is amazing - better than the original! It does require a data connection though.

I use Navit - it's sometimes slow to get going (finding satellites?) the interface is terrible and it vanishes on occasion so I have to restart it (with apparently no harm done). This is on a Pre2.

It works in London OK for me. I downloaded a map - all of Europe I think. So it works without data and the map also has some landmarks like restaurants, cinema's etc.

Address search works, but not with postcodes. I did download an extra that integrates the app with Just Type and will translate postcodes to a destination for Navit. That bit needs an internet connection, but once done, you can proceed without. I also downloaded the voice service.

When scrolling or zooming the map, it will tend to snap back to my current location, which can be annoying.

I think it's great for free. If someone with more ability than me could redesign the interface for clarity and ease of use, it would be very good. Adjusting of settings - what there are and even showing if you have successfully set them are what's mainly letting it down. Very unintuitive.

What or where can I download the "extra that integrates the Navit app with Just Type" in respect of converting post codes?
It sounds quite useful.

The Extra is called Navit maps. Looking at it again, it seems to be primarily an aid to downloading maps, but I've never actually used that function - only the 'Just Type' feature.

It can be found be searching for Navit in Preware. Oh, here is a list of what I have installed:

Navit Maps 0.0.5-2
Speech Dispatcher 0.7.1-10.2
Locale Support Infrastructure 7.3.0-2
Navit - Car Navigation System 0.5.04787

YMMV...

wow, cool, it works, can type a post code into Just Type and after pressing Navit it launches with post code location set as destination.

cheers!
ps After installing the extra Navit Maps app from Preware, I had to type something (ie anything) into Just Type, then go to bottom of pull-down menu list, click Preferences and then add Navit as a "Just Type" launcher app.