What kind of Open webOS device do you want? | webOS Nation

What kind of Open webOS device do you want? 69

by Derek Kessler Fri, 21 Sep 2012 8:41 pm EDT

What kind of Open webOS device do you want?

With Open webOS gaining a serious install-anywhere avenue thanks to the release of an OpenEmbedded-enabled version, we've been sitting here wondering for a while what all our soon-to-be-favorite open source operating system might run on. It's already been booted on a variety of devices, including the all-in-one Raspberry Pi mini computer, but there's a whole wide world of devices out there that could potentially run Open webOS.

There's the obvious devices that already run webOS: smartphones and tablets. While nothing is sold right now that runs the OS, it was still designed with mobile touch interfaces in mind. But that's not all it can or will run on. OpenEmbedded opens the doors wide - wide enough that even HP's dreams of webOS on everything could someday come true.

So what would you have? Are you content with just a webOS tablet or smartphone, or do you really want to run Open webOS on your laptop and your printer and your television and your toaster?


I want something like the Pixi+, slate + QWERTY, but with hardware on the Veer/Pre3 level at the least.

Agree and a retina display with a larger screen

i just voted for all of them

Judging by Derek's posts this week, I sense we're at a crossroads. The hint is that Open WebOS is close to being applied to a product, or being deep sixed forever. Or, webosnation.com is close to being demoted to a Facebook page or abandoned without content alla TreoCentral.com

Where are we Derek? Alphabetically, WebOS should be listed in front of Windows Phone on the banner above. Excision feels imminent.


I want whatever that thing is front & center of the above graphic.

That would be the WebOS Ken. I do like the whole 2 page thing going on, though

I must admit that is a pretty sexy looking device, but part of my likes the vertical due to One hand typing. Now what if you had both?
Look at the top 2 devices of the link below. 1 is the middle image in the above picture and the other is the vertical slider that caught my eye

Nice! Thanks for the link. Hadn't seen that post before. Kinda funny, because there has been many times working w/ my Pre- that I've thought, "Hey, wouldn't it be great if the slider portion swiveled 90%! That couldn't be too hard to engineer." Looks like some other users(?) thought the same exact thing (Twist, C40, other 'honorable mentions' at bottom of post).

Ah yes. I remember that. In fact, there are a few of my mock ups in there. :-)

@Toadfrogjr: The phone had a 3.8in screen, and would have theoretically had a keyboard for both horizontal and vertical modes.

@namgod: One of my favorite parts of the contest were designing the software that could be used when the phone was in landscape mode. I remember doing a ton of renderings and videos of new features and how the software would work. I'm surprised that the dual screen mode hasn't been used on any phones or tablets, as far as I know (other than the new Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 that was just released).

If you are referring to the phone that also had a controller built into it, the yes that is what I liked about it. Vertical sized keyboard with ability for portrait or landscape typing. Simply brilliant IMO

I was the designer of that phone. It seemed pretty obvious when I was doing research for the design for the contest that a large majority of people wanted a phone with a landscape slider (which is why I'm guessing it won the contest)... it's too bad Palm/HP never went down that route. :/

Hmm, I thought toaster would have had an overwhelming majority

A smartphone in the galaxy note for factor running WebOS would be fantastic! Good hardware, camera, etc. I'd love that!

Basically anything flagship Samsung hardware with HTC design. That new HTC WP8 is beautiful. For a tablet, Nexus 7 hardware with a few extras (ie. vibrate motor). Make it happen HP, make it happen. Lol.

Of course, I'd take anything with the iPhone hardware. Apple hater or not, it's superb quality. A truly solid device. I think a phone the size of the GS3 would be my limit, though. I have a 10 inch tablet for a reason. I miss having webOS on my phone. So, so much.

I'd also love a gr9 webOS tablet. Something like the Surface, but a lower price.

A webOS TV would be pretty darn cool. At least, in my imagination. Take the kinect and add hand gestures to stack your favourite channels and swipe between them (this would probably be much more difficult and cumbersome than it appears in my head), and you'd have a pretty minority report-ish television.

A webOS connected camera would be nice too. Instantly upload all pictures and videos similar to Google's feature "Instant upload." They'd be stored on your webOS account where you can share them and view them from any device, webOS or not.

Heck, give me webOS on my laptop too.

All in all, I want a smartphone the most.

How about.... Anything! At this point I would settle for a matchbook cover!

Really tho... Pripority #1 is 4" port slider - no oreo please ;-)

TouchPad2 is #2

#3 my car - please don't laugh - car interfaces suck goats at this point

Who would laugh at the car idea? I was going to be 1st in line for a touchpad go for my ride. Combined with beats audio, a custom dash mount, built in media player, and maps, apps, and browsing on the go with Internet via 3G or pre3 tethering, no one could possibly be under impressed with that crazy awesome set up. Actually I'm crying as I type this thinking of what could have been.....sad

Given that my Ford Sync is fairly retched would be glad to see a webOS upgrade. Microsoft must be using vista for as well as it works.

I'd pay a grand just for the phone on the left with a 4' screen, running on sprint, and with some decent horsepower under the hood.

Don't really see the need for a powerful touch friendly OS on anything else than a tablet though. On a laptop/desktop I want a full OS. On a camera/printer/toaster I just want the basics, with maybe some WiFi and instant upload capability thrown in. You know, cause I gotta show Facebook my mad toasting skills instantly.

I really like that one that with the widgets running on top. Swiping up to card view and the scrolling through widgets seems so crazy awesome!!

Thing we all want and need is super hardware wise quality smart phone!!

Give me a refined Pre3 (updated specs), call it a Pre4 , and I'd be quite happy. The Pre3 got a lot of things right. It is the flagship webOS phone that we should have always had - the Pre done right.

If HP had released that phone first, instead of that silly thing called the Veer, webOS would have had a little more momentum when the TP launched, and things may have gone a little differently.

Or they could call it the HP Pre3 Plus. Say that five times fast.

But all of your statements are absolutely correct. HP could've, would've, should've, but alas, didn't. :(

The way Palm was handled by releasing the least wanted hardware first and an unfinished OS on the TouchPad, it's clear that HP wanted Palm to fail so that they could go all in on services. They probably spent more or advertising and promotion (Russel Brand TV adds, Real Steel movie promos) than development. I suspect they never though that letting go of relatively inexpensive acquisition would have such a high profile effect on their stock. They could let Autonomy fail and no one would have blinked. even though the purchase price was 8 time the price of Palm, and who knows how much extra cash was spent on Autonomy for integration into HP. Yeah I'm bitter.

They would have also needed to price the TouchPad more realistically for any chance at success. Do you remember the flaming we took from fanboys when we questioned the pricing at launch? If the TouchPad had originally been priced near cost, and supported with the Pre 3 and Stingray, with HP working diligently to bring the most popular apps to webOS, then things may have been different. Instead, people like us are forced to dream of future webOS hardware that may never come to fruition.

"Do you remember the flaming we took from fanboys when we questioned the pricing at launch?"
...yep, I do remember quite well...

Couldn't agree more! The worst part is that given all that was going on in the market at that time, you would think that would've been the most common-sense thing to do!!!

could not agree more!

I want ALL! But phone FIRST!

I'll even take a toaster :-P

1. Portrait slider with keyboard - ie: Pre 4. A large portion of the webOS userbase is already used to or prefers this.

2. 4" keyboardless slab, ie: Stingray. This is needed to compete as this is the current dominant form factor in the marketplace. It needs specs that come close to market leaders like the current gen iPhone, Samsung Galaxy ?, and HTC flagship, not old generation hardware.

3. A candy bar phone like the Pixi with a physical keyboard for those who still love that form factor.

4. A tablet computer with specs similar to current generation iPad and/or current gen Kindle Fire, depending on which segment of the marketplace they wish to attack.

Besides the hardware, there needs to be an app ecosystem with the most popular apps ported (Netflix, Words With Friends, Skype, Citrix, etc.) at a minimum. Suburban Joe won't buy the product if they can't find certain apps that they take for granted on the iPad or Android tablets. While HP did score a few wins such as Angry Birds, some glu Mobile PDK games, and a darn good Facebook client for the time, there wasn't enough.

They also need to remember their mantra that this is a marathon, not a sprint. If they don't succeed, learn from your mistakes and correct them.

I would love for them to make a new tablet and new phone. I was one of those people that actually switched to the veer from my iphone 3G. Then got a touch pad and then got a Pre 3. If they would have released the Pre 3 before the veer I think we would be living in a different world. I love the Pre 3. Best phone to never make the market. It would be nice to have the option of an on screen touch keyboard or a physical keyboard. They could attract more of a user base with the options. Just a thought.

I'd love a full touch smartphone and an upgraded Pre 3.

Go Slab or Go Home... Another non-slab webOS device would put another nail in the already buried webOS coffin... If Palm made a Slab phone either along side the original Pre or instead of it, it would have probably caught on better like android slab phones did.. and webOs might be alive today..

1) < 4" landscape slider: I love my pre3, but would like it better with a landscape slider...
Note: toofast4yourazz is a troll (or a genius, but I'd go to Android sliders instead of buying that).

2) 7" 16/9 tablet: so it can fit in jacket pockets, Touchpad Go was wrong for me.
Anyway, other projects are working to make such hardware with fully open source drivers happen, so Open WebOS will be installable (like many competitors). But I don't expect it before months, and not in Nexus 7 class (but close enough).

1) I say << 4" portrait slider, the Pre 2 formfactor was perfect, the Pre 3 already a little bit too big (but still acceptable). It's just stupid that you always have to turn the device before you can use the keyboard and again you get a small "height"-screen.
2) The 7" TouchPad Go formfactor is perfect, just  a little bit more modern: thinner and lighter.
I hate all the 16/9-devices, may be they are great for watching videos and gaming, but for everything else they are just trash.

lol not a troll, I was a Pre owner from day 1.. huge webOS fan.. webOS has hands down the best UI..

However, one thing you need to realize is that Most of the webOS user base is bias towards phones with keyboards, since the pre had one and that's why they bought the palm pre and are now a fan of webOS..

Take the personal bias out of the equation and look at what webOS needs, not want you want.. The MAJORITY of smart phone users want a slab phone, that is why a slab phone is a MUST HAVE if webOS is to ever catch on.. The pre3 form factor was nice, and if they could make it tad skinnier with great specs, it may even sell well.. however a slab phone will always sell better... IMO

Smartphone, for sure. I have a Touchpad, but my Pre 2 does more work than any device I have. I even read most of my news on the phone.

I don't really want a landscape phone, you're pretty much stuck holding them with both hands and thumb typing, then one handing it sideways while you do gestures. Not so cool if you've got butterfingers or you're standing up on a train, where I use my phone quite a bit. I don't really like slabs, either. I can do either, but I still love that vertical slider. I've installed a virtual keyboard, and I still find myself sliding out the keyboard way more often and hiding the virtual keyboard...up to the point of just uninstalling it. The vertical slider form is perfect for holding in one hand while you have the other hand free for gestures and typing. Just works a whole lot better for me. I still find that Pre 3 form factor to be just exactly right compared to just about every other phone I've used recently.

Wouldn't mind it too much if it were bigger, either, but just from using the newer Androids and iPhones, I really just don't want a phone that big in my pocket. They're almost at the point where you have to pack them around in a stupid fanny pack or some silly holster if you don't have huge pockets, and there's no way in hell I'll use either. They don't even fit in most cellphone pockets anymore.

And it goes without saying that inductive charging should be here to stay. The touchstone is still pretty seriously awesome...unless, of course, they incorporate that new near field wireless charging stuff that doesn't require an inductive charging cable, pad, or puck. That would be extremely awesome provided it doesn't interfere with the wifi or 4G.

Basically, if I can run openWebOS on a Pre 3 with better hardware, I'm sold.

Seriously: Refrigerator!

How often I find myself standing in the kitchen, thinking 'How much of this again,... where's my TouchPad?'. Waiting for potatoes? Gimme some music plus News Republic!

Many people might do their jokes about kitchen-IT, but I would love it!

Device 1: Smartphone
I really liked the size of the Original Pre (Pre+,Pre2).
Include a high resolution screen, a small frame around (biggest reasonable screen), a very good high resolution good quality camera (~8-10Mpix), and a good keyboard (at least Pre 3 quality or better).

Device 2: 7-8"-Tablet
A handy tablet, probably like the TouchPad Go.
With good production quality.

And of course: All the TouchStone goodiness. ;-)

I've forgotten to mention one important issue:

Make sure, that Open webOS is stronger on the PIM side.
Like the old ZEN-of-Palm and PalmOS times.
At their time, they were second to none regarding productivity. Palm PIM was THE one PIM device/OS to go for.

So give us back the great productivity tool PalmOS / Palm devices used to be.

With the easy GUI and the concept of SYNERGY, the foundation is set for a great success. Just build on it.

A 7" tablet that comes with a smartTV as a remote control/miniTV.

If any manufacturer surprised the world with an Open webOS phone, they would have a ton of buyers. Obviously not to the level of the Galaxy S III or iPhone 5, but there are still a lot of people out there who would jump at a new webOS device with modern specs.

I'm thinking they could hit home by offering TWO launch devices:

1) 4.3" (or greater) slab
2) 4" slider
the landscape vs portrait argument being the biggest debate. The portrait would appeal to us webOS faithful, but the landscape would probably work better for a device that size (really, a 4" portrait slider seems a bit cumbersome). And it could have the advantage of offering arrow keys!

Specs are too easy to throw out there. Just match the top contenders out there (SGSIII & iPhone 5) and you're golden.

"really, a 4" portrait slider seems a bit cumbersome"

...wrong - the portrait sliders are much more cumbersome to work with, than vertical ones (all two of them available on the market, that is).

The 4"+, high resolution, vertical slider would be a KILLER for usability - keyboard would get one step bigger from Pre3 (which itself, is already an AWESOME keyboard to work with), thus making two-thumbs typing even better experience, while still being small enough, balanced & supported correctly to be very easy to operate single-handed, and perform gestures. Additionally, device could get a bit slimmer (because it would become bigger, so it would be easier to pack the same components into thinner chassis = still the same volume).

Having the whole screen available for viewing your content, while typing on the slider, is making even my Galaxy S2 4.2" pale in comparison to Pre3, whenever productivity is considered (not just consumption of the content - where it simply smokes Pre3). Of course, having vertical slider upped to 4"+, would make me wet my pants, and want that sucker immediately.

But again, Android application compatibility would be a must for me - there's no chance in the world of getting even the fraction of the Google Play apps on any webOS device, future, past or present - so even if 10% of Android apps would work properly, it is indefinitely better than "#ZIP" of applications, that we are geting otherwise.

An updated pre 2.

Besides the 'obvious' any "phone" - preferably with productive slider keyboard for me as a personal choice, I am intrigued by the offerings of consumer/business devices with advantages gained by the use of the multitasking and 'card' metaphor operating system.
In particular, eg for starters:
PMP / mp3 player - taking the DNA in the opposite direction to Apple cf iPod -> iPhone.
Camera / Photo Album - allows multiple options or experimentation in different types of choices to be made "simultaneously" using multiple cards BEFORE accepting changes - swiping away?
Cash registers / POS systems - with customer facing integration. Cards can allow multiple "simultaneous" sales / transactions to proceed.
etc. Just give me a few minutes ...

Great poll although you forget a Watch!!
Go Open Webos!!!

After having my touchpad in my car running the OBD2 sensor app, playing music, running a maps app, running touchvol, getting all my phones calls and texts through it, and keeping up with all my online accounts with a tethered veer... I think an in-dash double din car-puter is definitely in order.


When will release them, I see very well this devices.


Would like updated. Pre 3, with bigger battery, otherwise it's brilliant,
and 7" Touchpad Go with best hardware, a shame It. Was never released,
Until Then will Use my Touchpad and pre2 /3 phones, until They fail, I will miss
Using webOS as nothing else matches it. Android phone and Tablet now in desk drawer.
Would buy phone / Tablet. With open webOS on it, if well made by any company.

Oh yes. I forgot to mention that on my posting.
Beside the NEW devices,
I really want Open webOS to run also on my present Palm/HP devices, a Pre+ and a Pre 3 (both with QWERTZ keyboard ).

I want them to pull an Amazon and release maybe 5 tablets. One 200$ with a 7inch screen, 1.6 GHz dual core processor (quad core is ridicolous) 2 camera, front and back, and a display with at least 310 ppi

Great Derek. With your photoshop magic you've made me drool over my keyboard.

Portrait 4.3" candybar phone at 720p

7" tablet (thin & light, 1080p res)

In-dash navigation (with default nav & car entertainment apps which can't be uninstalled, run on startup, and have a dedicated launch/present hardware button for each)

home automation panels (again, default monitoring/control apps with hardware buttons to launch/present

But this is a wishlist. webOS had such a lead on innovation and design that there are *still* areas where the competition haven't caught up, but Android is gaining, and with Matias Duarte directing things, they're getting there quickly. I think once they finally consolidates messaging, figure out universal search, and fix the bugs with their task management/card view stuff, Android will be as good as Android, and we haven't picked up their apps.

We're basically out of time. I'm still using my Pre3, but I'm starting to really need an app like Klaxon to identify and notify me of specific texts, whether the ringer switch is on or not, and a smart alarm app that will go off at a specific time *if* it's sitting on my dock, etc.

Of course, moving to Android would mean that I'd lose out on having an exchange compatible lock screen that shows me my notification tray, or Exhibition which works with exchange but shows me my calendar events when it's sitting on my dock. Or, hell, the touchstone. And I really can't stress enough that the messaging app in webOS is still the one by which other OS's communications should be judged.

Matias Duartes did a pretty poor job with Android's cards. I have a kindle fire flashed with Android 4.1, and I HATE the card systme. The swiping cards away feels unnatural, and cards don't stay live. I constantly find myself opening a "card" and the app is restarting itself. I actually use Android as much as webOS (Pixi Plus). I just wish the Pixi Plus was more powerful.

...well, you know, to change an UX paradigm, on an established platform, it is not the same, as starting from scratch with a blank canvas, as Duarte did, with webOS.. but they are going in the right direction, and if they don't get distracted, I believe they will eventually get there.

I'll have one of those horizontal sliders in a heartbeat. And a new tablet. And a portrait slider, and a phablet. Heck I'd take the lot and encourage others to do the same.

I would love an updated pre 3! Try to get the keys a little further out and not as much concave as the original pre. I think the smooth edges and rounded shape are the best to hold in the hand and the size of the pre 3 is great. Maybe get the screen a little larger by making it go edge to edge?

Thanks for a great site to come and see what is or is not happening in webOS. I hope every day to see something exciting and I don't want to give up yet.

I want some cool upgrades for My 2 Touchpads!

first the smart phone than the tablet or either or but than please THE TOASTER!!!

I've been checking on this site ever since I got my 99$ touchpad... It was a decent device for the price. I don't want to burst anyone's bubble, but lets get real, webOS is NEVER going to catch up to any other mobile OS out there. Yes, Open webOS will come out and a FEW tech people will install it on a Nexus or an S3 but that's about it, no mass consumer will ever bother with it in the log run and it will fade away. Get real people, this is a great site and Derek is a great tech writer and in 6 months time he'll move on to something else (Android news most likely) no reason to stick around to write once a week posts about rumors and such. Face it webOS is dead and will not be coming back, try to embrace some of the features that other OS manufacturers steal from it. There will NEVER be an official webOS phone or a tablet. It's time to grow up and realize that besides a few installs by tech savvy people on other devices it will never become main stream with regular people.

I would really love an updated 4G LTE webOS! Touchpad 2 that can make phone calls! That way I would only buy it (TP2) plus a Bluetooth to take calls so I don't look like those GS Note dudes with a brick on their heads (no offense intended). All features already discussed here that may apply are welcome (front 3MP and rear 8MP camera, 32GB plus 32GB SD slot, 2.1 quadcore, 1080dpi Full HD 10" display, GESTURE AREA like webOS' smartphones, possibility to print to any printer not just hp's, non finger-magnet back and... I think that's about it.)
You know what would be crazy though; if somehow they could make the physical keyboard work on the TP2!!! I mean... SHUT UP AND JUST TAKE MY MONEY!!!
Edit: I think hardware is VERY important! For instance, is 90% of apple dominance! Why? Yes, it has 700,000 apps; question is: how many a user has on their phone/tablet? 50, 100, 200!!! (Out of 700,000!!!) How many of those are used? 20, 30, 50!!! (I have 168 and use about 10 daily -webOS Nation one of the of course!- and probably between 20 and 30 of the rest). I mean, yes we need apps, but not hundred thousands of them. Just the best ones out there. Like for example, we already have an app much much requested. WhatsApp. Through Amoralico great client MojoWhatsUp. There are several good, requested apps (e.g.: netflix) needed to attract users. But one thing users can't resist is the latest, slickest, sickest and most beautiful gadget on the block (just see what iPhone5 did in its first 24hrs of pre-ordering!). Having a device that can manage the everyday users "simple/basic" tasks/uses/etc, the more people would feel --hhhmmm- ok with it. But if you give them (us) the next generation device along with the best mobile OS and with the basics covered, then resurrection will be on its way. My humble opinion.

guys this is not the time to get greedy or choosy. If this is a serious question, then the answer is A 4 inch slab phone just like the one in the picture up there. That's the only thing that can resurrect webos. After its resurrection, then we can be choosers. We're still begging at this stage.

Asking about a webOS toaster seems to be very serious ;)

something like the pixi+ but with a much larger screen. I think a phone like that will be very successful!

i have my own webs version including usb mode for internet i shall use.

well right now Samsung is the best thing next to apple we should get webOS working on the galaxy s 3 someone will pick up webOS eventually its not dead its only been put aside till its needed I enjoy the features so much on the veer , pre 3 , and touchpad makes me feel like I own the device not having to point my finger at a stupid exit just swipe up and flick it off one major thing to improve would be the cards we want instant access and responds don't add to much to it just make it fast !!!! We can add the rest later :-)

I actually like the form factor of Pre 3! Therefore I stick to it still.

maybe the screen of 4", but no bigger than that.