Poll: HP open sourcing webOS, your reaction | webOS Nation

Poll: HP open sourcing webOS, your reaction 46

by Derek Kessler Fri, 09 Dec 2011 3:01 pm EST

So HP intends to fully open source webOS. We’re excited and jittery at the same time, because while we finally have a direction to be pointed, we don’t know what lies ahead. Is it a future of flourishing open source development, or is a slow and painful death?


I'm afraid it's all over unless at least one manufacturer takes interest publicly. That may not even be a handset maker. If one does, it's a hole new ball game.

The thing with opensource software is that it never really dies. At worst, it'll hunker down somewhere in a dim corner oooooooof the Internet becoming a ghostly shade of its once former glory. The chances of this happening is slim, though, and historically is inversely proportional to the quality of the software. It all depends on who cares to capitalize on the software and if they will take other people along with them for the ride.

Since it's about to be Open now, HTC could release some brand new device running it.

Now is there any way to get WebOS on an Android device?

That might be pretty cool! Do any Android phones have a real keyboard?

Who needs a keyboard, just slap on webOS 3.0+!

HTC EVO Shift and Samsung Epic on Sprint. I've been looking at them for awhile. Been on my original Pre since 2 weeks after they came out.

FWIW, I went from my Sprint Pre- to an Epic 4G and hardly used the keyboard (I actually like Swype and try to "swype" on my TouchPad) and just upgraded to the Epic 4G Touch with has no physical keyboard. I think I would have really liked the Pre 3. I got to hold one and it was very light and solid.

What's going to be missing from this platform is any sense of urgency. Since nobody is really that invested in it then they can just sit on the sidelines and see what happens. Nobody will be in any hurry to do anything. There may be lots of tire-kicking but not a lot of commitment from anyone. At least not billions like HP did.

That is certainly possible. However, let's not forget Mozilla and how Firefox has been very popular.

Until Google came along and raped them with Chrome.

Which is also open source.

Great move!

Now WebOS at least has the possibility of making money.

I guess the hope is that the Samsungs and HTCs of this world (or China) will pay a little protection money for every WebOS phone sold.

That doesn't solve the ecosystem (many apps, movies & music etc) problem. But it at least has the possibility of earning something.

Edit: And of course this is what HP should have done from the start(very first day) then we might live in a slightly different world right now and yeah I still think HP sucks, but open source is great.

Open sourced tends to begin quietly, then from grassroots creative solutions announced, create new possibilities. Android makers at a minimum should explore webOS as a 'skunk works as a defensive "cover-your-bets" approach and to discover where this awesome software may lead,.

HP turns heads, sizeable Touchpad installed base began this Fall, and the WebOS buzz has begun to arise.

Creative markets and entrepreneurial inventors love a challenge and opportunities to invent better solutions in an open unlimited environment.

WebOS is superior to Android in many ways. Even business publications acknowledge this. The next several days and weeks could get very interesting.

Sure, but that will take YEARS! Let's face it - no more pure webOS devices ever again. At best, bits and pieces will show up here and there, but even then, it'll be integrated into othere peoples core systems. Makes me sad that the once great and all powerful Palm has been reduced to a footnote in business textbooks and webOS will be a footnote in softeware engineering textbooks. web OS was the best thing out there and now it's just gone the way of the dodo

One of the biggest problems with webOS is that it needs more applications......even an emulator that can run Android applications on top of webOS would be great (like the playbook's android player).

That would be interesting.

Reply here! Which mobile company do you think will pick up webOS first?

Cyberdine Systems

If you can hear me...

HTC, then Kyocera ~

Kyocera......Announcing the Kyocera Echo 2 running WebOS 3.1.0!

Or, webOS 2...

Need a keyboard for webOS 2.

Another fine Machete Product!

Good decision by HP. Good for the community. But no more devices from HP and apparently no interest from other manufacturers like Samsung? Yeah im a bit worried about that.

i hope HP To make the flagship devices for webOS like the google nexus is with android.

I think if your choice is between two free to use, open source, attractive, feature complete, and very capable platforms, but one has patent entanglements that make its legal future dark and questionable not to mention currently includes a Microsoft Tax for every device sold and the second with a deep patent portfolio protecting its IP, if I was HTC or Samsung or Barnes & Noble, or Amazon, I would give the latter a serious look.

If they can port Android to a webOS device, let's see who's first to port webOS to an Android device! Awesome!

webOS as a viable smartphone & tablet OS is pretty much dead. Open-sourcing without any reason for OEMs to build hardware won't go anywhere, what reason does an OEM have to build a webOS device instead of an Android device? There needs to be an incentive for OEMs to build devices, HP hasn't delivered that.

But I open-sourcing it is better than killing it outright. I doubted that a sale was going to happen at this point, I don't think Meg would have needed time to decide about selling, it simply wasn't an available option. I had actually expected that HP would announce the shuttering of webOS, they'd basically get rid of everyone except the absolute bare essentials to provide support for existing devices.

I think you need to read the reply of Downtime500 above. That's the incentive for hardware manufacturers.

Hmm, if we can mature webOS to the point where it has drivers for the popular hardware choices, maybe it would not be so difficult to port to existing hardware platforms like Android?

More viable OSes in the ecosystem, the better off all of us will be. However, I'm still waiting for the other shoe to drop.

From a biz perspective, I believe HP made the best call they could. open-sourcing should buy HP some time, allow the mobile market to further develop, allow the mobile communication companies to further align with each other and shake out OS strengths for phone, tablets and whatever comes next, and give possible webOS buyers more time to see if webOS can find a niche'.

I'm just glad that this gives "webOS internalz" some answers!

thank you Meg !!!

Can I change my vote now that Meg is talking new tablets?

Voted for 3, but could be 2 also...

i believe with this android is the biggest gainer ...now they will copy all the gud stuff from webos in no time n will become even more
solid ,popular and widely used......
in a way this decision will increase the reach of webOS but it'll do more good to android and other mobile OS'es than to webOS itself.......
neway glad to know that webOS is not shutdown totally....

I can't help but wonder what would have happened when HP would have open sourced it from the start...

Who knows.. maybe Nokia wouldnt be making WP phones...?

Nokia only got in it for the Microsoft money.

That, and/or Elop is looking to make Nokia cheap enough for Microsoft to buy outright by ruining Nokia.

this is a great opportunity for *us* to improve what we already have. we can open up tethering of the touchpad to current phones, make it happy with ad hoc networks, make the USB connection more useful, improve the onscreen keyboard -- a world of things. i'm sure the hardware companies are just delighted to receive our sage advice, but the tangible payoff right now is that we can make our devices into whatever we want them to be, to make them do whatever we want them to do. and this is good.

"HP’s decision is not unlike what AOL did with the Netscape browser years ago. After losing to Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, Netscape was released to the open-source community. Its successor, Firefox, is now one of IE’s leading rivals." ....Washington Post

Alright! Truly Linux now! Probably the best news ever! Linux is spreading through the mobile market! Now I actually have a choice between mobile devices! Before it was just Android because it was Linux but now, Choices!

Sweet... Faith has been restored... There is a light at the end of the tunnel... Finally time to exhale.

... Interest peaked by posibility of porting to android phone(s)...snickers...

Does this mean that if and when manufacturers makes phones with webOS that webOS will become defragmented? Not that that really worries me cus I went Android about 2 months ago and what i've come to learn pure Android phones like the nexus line get pretty much first dibs on updates and what not.. So I hope one manufacturer steps up and does the same for webOS...

The big problem is how are we going to get new hardware. Very few people can afford $500-700 to get the hardware to hack WebOS on to. People have been making their Pixis and Pre's last until something better came out. Look at the low market share of Linux and that's on an OS that you can put together an inexpensive homebuilt and put any version of Linux on it. With tablets and phones there is no inexpensive model that you can easily put WebOS on it. Someone will have to pick it up and put some effort into it - even if it's unlocked GSM phones. This will be just a hobbyist community. A shame - I really liked WebOS and
Palm OS before it. It sure needed a lot of optimizing if it doesn't run smoothly on 1.2 GHz,
1 GB ram Touchpad.

I can't wait to see what devices WebOS will be able to run on. While manufactures may tweak it to their likening, homebrew can always straighten it out. I have complete faith in our community to maintain a certain purity of WebOS, which keeps me here. Let HP worry about the patents and let the developers have the codes and figure out the rest.

Its done, my concerns are pointless. I rather not wait for an outdated HP product and get WebOS ported on better hardware. The reason I've stayed with it is because of the software. I've been bery happy with what I've seen until now from homebrew and others with only so many pieces. Time to think big! Good or bad, its happening...embrace it.

BTW - just met a guy with a Pre- on Sprint who's not even overclocked. Just turned him on to the underground.