webOS all-hands meeting called for this afternoon, answers likely to result | webOS Nation
 
 

webOS all-hands meeting called for this afternoon, answers likely to result 96

by Derek Kessler Tue, 08 Nov 2011 3:13 pm EST

It’s been a long and tumultuous road since HP decided to stop making webOS devices back in August. We’ve been up and down and seen no fewer than half a dozen different and divergent companies floated as potential purchasers of webOS. Tonight will possibly be the start of the next chapter of webOS. We’re not sure what that chapter will be, but we do know that HP has called an all-hands meeting of the webOS Global Business Unit this afternoon on the Palm campus in Sunnyvale. In attendance will be HP CEO Meg Whitman and former Palm CEO and current HP SVP Jon Rubinstein.

What exactly they’ll be discussing is an unknown at this point. We’ve heard everything from a completed sale to HP keeping webOS to HP just killing webOS. Truth is, only those execs presenting and a few others inside HP (and maybe outside, if the first option is the truth) know what’s going on. Soon, we’ll all know. Either way, it seems that HP’s come to their holistic decision on the matter.

Thanks anonymous!

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96 Comments

Godspeed, gentlemen.

Ladies and Gentlemen. Thanks for coming on such short notice. While you're in this meeting, your network access is being revoked...

Funny, but coooooold.

They wouldn't give hours of notice if that's what they were going to do.

I think they are going to sell the patients and hope to recoup as much money as possible. They utilize what they can from Web OS and that's it.

Say goodbye people now. It will make it easier on you if you just come to terms.

Sell the patients? What the heck does that mean? I bet RIM buys them and within 2 years we'll be talking about all that could have been with the RIM acquisition of webOS and what a shame it is that they are going under....

If they intend to make a tablet (with Win8 or whatever) in the future as many expect, they would be wise to hold onto the patents.

It's more likely that they sell webOS, keep the patents, but give the buyer a perpetual license.

Would you buy webOS w/o the patents? Unless they give it away, I's be very surprised if a buyer would do that deal. The patents are everything.

If I got perpetual license to the patents (as I said in the comment), I would buy webOS without actual ownership of them. This presumes that I have the money to buy webOS and make it a contending mobile OS.

If I just want the patents, then I negotiate with HP to only by the patents at a reduced rate. Perhaps HP says they'll "throw-in" webOS for $100 million in which case I take both. Then I try to sell webOS with a perpetual license to my newly acquired patents for $250 million.

Butterflies

I can guarantee one thing, the decision will be dumb and beyond any logic.

Yea, I don't see why they would stop now, but we can all hope.

At this point, all remaining options are bad:

1) Give up and throw away the investment completely.
2) Start it up again, incur all those extra costs, and plan for the long-term hard struggle HP has shown they don't have the stomach for.
3) Sell it at a price well below what they bought it for.

Any of those could be assailed as stupid.

Stupid is relative.

The damage from August is done. It's history now.
New CEO has to deal with the situation as it is.

If they decided that they stick with the decision not to invest in webos devices (and go W8 and/or Android for tablets) then option 3 is not stupid. Selling - even at a loss - is less stupid then letting the asset rot until it has no worth at all anymore. Getting 0.5-1 bn is much better than not getting 0.5-1 bn.

Now that they decided to stay in the PC consumer biz - they need a mobile solution to stay relevant and competitive.
Android is relatively safe - but hard to be different from the competition and so far nobody was really successful with an Android tablet.

W8 is very risky - plus it costs licence fees.

If they decide for option 2 - that's not stupid either. They lost 3 months - that hurts. But the original plan wasn't a bad one. Just need to tweak and fix execution. This is short-term the most costly option - but long term the most profitable. Risky - but not stupid.

Only option 1 would be stupid at this point.
It would make more sense to let it die slowly. Keeping options open. It would serve as a threat vs MS ("we don't like the licence fee - at this rate we'd rather invest in our own webos"). A buyer might still appear later (Android getting costly after several legal battles - or some such scenario)

I think that HP has had time to meet with Microsoft to help them make a decision. If M$ lost HP selling Windows PCs, that would be bad for M$.

Therefore, I think that M$ could have sweetened the pot on licensing fees on Server/Desktop/Mobile that would give HP a leg up. They both benefit. All HP has to do now is get rid of WebOS.

Actually using Android costs you licensing fees as well, as Microsoft have found that it was a better way to combat the OS than going the Apple/ban way.

If they could license WebOS with protection from the patents it could turn out to be the cheapest smartphone OS to most manufactures.

2 is impossible because they know the hype about Tablets is gonna be over next year or in two years then it will be too late for a WebOS tablet.

You guys see all the RIM talk on the "other" blogs? I would love to see webOS on RIM hardware, but come on, doesn't RIM have AZT coming out soon...

I know it's not AZT, but it made me laugh because I couldn't recall the actual name, and AZT basically keeps you alive from... ok, maybe not so funny.

You already have webOS on the Playbook...

If this does go well, I would like to see George Romero as CEO.

Like give away the patents to Apple, give WebOS to HTC or Samsung or LG, license it back and pay Foxconn to produce new WebOS hardware?

We had that rumor a few weeks ago, didn't we?

They probably hired a pair of "Efficiency Experts" to re-interview everyone for their jobs... LOL...

Come meet the Bobs

Meg is going to show up in person means good news, no ?

Not necessarily. All the offices are close. It's not like she's flying across country to show up in person.

I will just say one thing: Oh **** ..

If all of those people are attending I think it sounds like a better outcome. Don't usually get the CEO for a public axing. Or maybe Whitman has more class about firing a few hundred people.

Most likely, Meg will just reassure everyone that we are FINE... But no real news will come out...

could easily be a serious discussion on how they plan to divide the spoils/$$ for themselves if they do sell the OS as a whole or gutted/licenced for random tech to others.

takes a lot fo work to say.....

1 for you, 1 for me, 1 for you, 1 million for me, 1 million for you.... etc

That's what makes this place so interesting! Never a dull moment. You never know what's going to happen next. Will webOS continue to exist?

All hands meeting... ...so all 8 of them that are left you mean?

-Suntan

Good luck to the webOS staff...

With webOS I have felt like I have been watching a movie. I have been on the edge of my seat since its announcement at CES 2009. What the next scene will be nobody knows. I do know that I will be there backing up the developers still supporting webOS by buying their apps. I wish the best for the platform but the way management has handled webOS, I expect the worse. It's as if I know the ending to the movie but here comes the plot twist.

Very well said, fellow webOS supporter.

I'm waiting for the 'Who Killed the webOS' documentary (and, yes, I intentially put 'the' before webOS as a take-off of 'Who Killed the Electric Car?').

Such a documentary should be educational material of how NOT to handle and IP.

Well this is some good news: iswebosdeadyet.com

That's been up for awhile. I suspect it will still say "No" when we all know the answer is "Yes".

needs a clock ticking down to zero...... Or up to infinity......~

... it is @adora and she's on the inside!

Everyone PRAY! I hope she says one of two things.

1. We are going to stick it out with Webos and start pushing out the devices we promised but with better specs and we have licensed a MFG like Samsung or HTC to build the phones/tablets

2. We're selling webOS to someone who can actually keep this thing alive and bring more apps/products to consumers.

1 & 2 ... PLEASE KEEP WEBOS ALIVE, CONTINUE WITH R & D, RELEASE NEW OS UPDATES, BRING MORE APPS!

LONG LIVE WEBOS!!!!!!

All your points I support. Well played.

I've been saying #1 for awhile. Buy slightly customized devices from someone else known to make amazing devices (like HTC or Samsung), then put webOS and an HP logo on it (or maybe even revive the Palm branding for consumer devices). For example, take a device like the Galaxy S II, replace the front button with a gesture area and notification led just like the Pre 3, load webOS 2.3 on it and you've got the killer webOS slab everyone's been wanting oh so bad. Same story with the Galaxy Tab - put a little different front and back on it, load up webOS 3.1, and you've got TouchPad 2. And so on. That's the way to keep webOS alive and relevant so HP can do they other things they want to do with it too.

nervous I am and I don't eat green eggs and ham... WEBOSOS!

Is this going to be like when appleinsider reported we were going to hear HPs decision on webos "this week"?

Meg is no Leo. She has heart.

All that having heart means though is she'll feel bad about laying them off...

Open source it HP, do the right thing.

Wow, so Rubby is still alive and well. Seeing him attending this meeting gives me some hope. He has been absent ever since webOS got the axe... if this were just more bad news, why would he be there? Does he like getting tomatoes thrown at him? He doesn't work with webOS anymore, so he has no business there unless they need someone to tell them the news and also their new boss since Dewitt left...

Also recent comments regarding the possibility of making new hardware by the Meg also reassure me... I predict good news... Had they been sold I think we would have heard very strong rumors about exactly who by now.

Spartans! Ready your breakfast and eat hearty... For tonight, we dine in **** !!!

Who: To all Titanic crewmembers and passengers

When: Tonight

What: All hands meeting

Why: New deck chair arrangement

Perfect!

...inexorably drawn back to watch yet another episode of...

As WebOS Turns

Sunnyvale 94087 – WebOS

WebOS The Sequel...Part 11

Sunny California Afternoon Of The Living Dead

well you can tell I don't watch too much tv or movies anymore

it's just gadgets and yet the suspense is killing me.....

;)

you coulda said, "we're gonna need a bigger boat."

Jon and Meg will step up and tell everybody: we'll have a final decision in the coming months.

And we are going to make it right!

DAMN! You nailed it! :)

CAN ANY OTHER os BOAST SUCH D R A M A !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am pleased that I no longer have to hold my breath. That gets quite tiresome.
Whether it lives or dies, I've enjoyed my webOS gadgets.

I am not going to make any predictions except to hope for the best. This economy is bad enough, and too many employees have paid with their jobs already. The time is now for webOS to thrive again amidst the murky waters of uncertainty. Continued Success webOS.

Meg is going to be like, " we are restarting webos devices with android quality hardware and lower than apple prices. we will resumr productiin of touchpads at 250 price ranges.

we can dream can we

It really pains me. Palm was such a proud brand. Now I can almost smell the end.

all-hands meeting? Are their any hands left?

I don't think this announcement will be good. That is my take. But I must say, I recently got my hands first on a pre-2 then this week a pre-3...the pre-2 is really nice and the pre-3...wow, that is some device. How could HP have screwed this up so bad? Can't believe they screwed up the release of these devices.

also... EVERY WEBOS ADVOCATE SHOULD BLAST MEG'S EMAIL AND TELL HER TO KEEP WEBOS!!! SHOW HER HOW MANY PEOPLE LOVE THIS OS AND PREFER IT OVER IOS AND ANDROID!

WEBOS ADDICTED SINCE JUNE 2009

here we go again...they are going to make me wait for....SOMETHING!

I'm buying everybody in the post... SOMETHING!

crossing my fingers & toes and holding my breath....
btw does anyone know if meg saw the ZDNet petition and what her reaction was if any?

Meg and Jon will be handing out new Pre3 and 64g TouchPad as severance, with a free upgrade coupon to webOS internals....
As they say.........
Adios, goodbye, C'est la vie, etc..etc.....

ANOTHER THING TO THINK ABOUT! BEST BUY AND WALMART ARE SELLING THE TOUCHPADS AS A BUNDLE RIGHT NOW! WHY WOULD MEG FIRE THE WEBOS DIVISION JUST YET...SOMETHING'S UP!

SOMETHING JUST HAPPENED... I DON'T KNOW WHAT BUT SOMETHING BIG JUST HAPPENED.. MEG MAYBE SAW AN INCREASE IN DEMAND, MAYBE WE ARE IN FOR A BIG SURPRISE.

SHE IS EITHER GOING TO SAY REST ASSURE YOU WILL ALL HAVE YOUR JOBS WITHER WEBOS DIES OR NOT. OR SHE WILL SAY GET BACK TO WORK, WEBOS IS BACK! OR SHE WILL SAY HERE IS 1000 BUCKS! YOUR ALL FIRED, MERRY XMAS! lol

I DONT THINK THEY ARE GOING TO ANNOUCE SOMEONE BUYING WEBOS BECAUSE THE COMPANY WOULD OF LEAKED ALOT...

WELL WE WILL ALL SEE.... "IN THE COMING MONTHS"

I think what happened is your shift-lock key got stuck to the on position.

his "lol" is in lowercase though.

He probably held shift habitually while typing it

Are you 10?

WHY ARE YOU YELLING?????

Just like Michael Jackson once said, "This is it".

I will always love you webOS.

didnt he die not long after saying that.

What I'd like to hear from HP:

1) WebOS sold to HTC
2) Rubenstein fired and given to us angry palm users who are authorized to do to him everything we want as long as we like.

What's your problem with Jon Rubenstein?

Hi all,

Well I'm still hopefull...this could be the best thing for webOS...we'll soon see what happens next...

Take care,

Jay

ummm...if I recall correctly, HP's purchase of Palm was the best thing for webOS....wasn't it?

That was two CEOs ago.

If HP didn't purchase Palm, I'm sure I wouldn't be holding a sweet TouchPad right now.

I'M ELEVENTEEN lol

So is this just a huge coincidence that this meeting is reportedly happening at the same time as the ginormous asteroid is barreling down towards earth? I THINK NOT!

Dieter Bohn will be holding the first The Verge mobile podcast at 4:30 ET (like now)

http://www.theverge.com/2011/11/8/2547823/the-verge-mobile-podcast-live-...

What a crappy **** unorganized podcast. I like Dieter and all, but they certainly don't have their act together now.

Hoping for the best.. but to be honest... it's already past the 11th hour for WebOS.

Wondering if we will see any disgruntled employees slipping in with a roll of duct tape and an M16...

WebOS Community is great, We must have faith that everything will be ok for all of us.

We are still dreaming with our Gadgets developement, when we use them everyday we feel special people, no doubt about that.

WebOS won't die I can assure that, is not as simple as everybody thinks.

Everyday somebody is looking to acquire a TP, Pre3, and even a Pre2 or Pre-, you believe it or not!!! actually I'm waiting for my 2nd TP and saving money for a Pre2 after using my 2nd pre-. This is the story for WebOS loyalist.

The fact that this meeting is happening @4:30pm is a sign that they are letting the employees go, and I suspect that will be all the information... for the coming day(s),week(s),month(s)...

In my experience, if it's a immediate layoff, it will normally happen in the morning so that they had time go through exist interview. so we still have to wait and see...

I can see it now;

Attention Mr. and Ms. consumer. Ignore the old man behind the HP curtain. Look at this new thing here that we have. It's called a webos phone and tablet. It will be out in 10 months, maybe. And you can still choose from among the 17 remaining apps in the app catalog.

This is so draining on us all. Ugg.

Folks, let's stop pretending that we do not know the decision. HP has been pursuing a strategy for some time. Even before ending devices, they were trying to license, sell, or otherwise get rid of the dead weight of WebOS. The problem is that no one wants it. That is the only reason they still have it. There is no drama. If they have a buyer, they will announce it. If they don't, they will keep it for lack of options. Do not mistake that for a renewd commitment to the platform.

Tomorrow we will say our goodbyes and go our separate ways or party hard and welcome newcomers.

Will there be a live coverage of that event?

What makes anyone think we'll find out right away?

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