WebOS Fate Remains Undecided

Josh Topolsky:

HP CEO Meg Whitman just told a room full of Palm and HP employees that the company doesn’t yet know what to do with webOS. “It’s really important to me to make the right decision, not the fast decision,” she told those gathered with her on the HP campus, adding that a decision would come in the next three to four weeks. This comes as a bit of a surprise, as reports recently swirled that the computer-maker has been in discussions to sell off the troubled mobile platform to the highest bidder. “If HP decides [to keep webOS], we’re going to do it in a very significant way over a multi-year period,” she said, adding that “it’s a very expensive proposition, but HP can make that bet.”

Translation: they tried to sell it but no one was buying at a good price.

In general, I favor taking extra time to “make the right decision, not the fast decision”, but time is of the essence here. My sense is that the team is dispersing — the talent is moving on. So the longer HP waits, the less valuable WebOS becomes, because more and more of the smart and talented people behind it will have left. Same goes if they decide to keep it.

When you’re faced with a “we need to stop the bleeding” problem, you need a fast decision.

Tuesday, 8 November 2011