More blood on Apple iPhone’s and iPad’s touchscreens: HP discontinues webOS phones, tablets

HP press release follows, verbatim:

HP today commented on the recent announcement by Autonomy Corporation plc (LSE: AU.L). HP confirms that it is in discussions with Autonomy regarding a possible offer for the company.

HP also reported that it plans to announce that its board of directors has authorized the exploration of strategic alternatives for its Personal Systems Group (PSG). HP will consider a broad range of options that may include, among others, a full or partial separation of PSG from HP through a spin-off or other transaction.

In addition, HP reported that it plans to announce that it will discontinue operations for webOS devices, specifically the TouchPad and webOS phones. HP will continue to explore options to optimize the value of webOS software going forward.

HP today announced preliminary results for the third fiscal quarter 2011, with revenue of $31.2 billion compared with $30.7 billion one year ago.

In the third quarter, preliminary GAAP diluted earnings per share (EPS) was $0.93 and non-GAAP diluted EPS was $1.10, compared with third quarter fiscal 2010 GAAP diluted EPS of $0.75 and non-GAAP diluted EPS of $1.08. Non-GAAP diluted EPS estimates exclude after-tax costs related primarily to the amortization of purchased intangible assets of approximately $0.17 per share and $0.33 per share in the third quarter of fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2010, respectively.

For the fourth fiscal quarter of 2011, HP estimates revenue of approximately $32.1 billion to $32.5 billion, GAAP diluted EPS in the range of $0.44 to $0.55, and non-GAAP diluted EPS in the range of $1.12 to $1.16. Non-GAAP diluted EPS guidance excludes after-tax costs of approximately $0.61 to $0.68 per share, related primarily to restructuring and shutdown costs associated with webOS devices, the amortization and impairment of purchased intangibles, restructuring charges and acquisition-related charges.

HP estimates full-year FY11 revenue will be approximately $127.2 billion to $127.6 billion, down from its previous estimate of $129 billion to $130 billion. FY11 GAAP diluted EPS is expected to be in the range of $3.59 to $3.70, down from its previous estimate of at least $4.27, and FY11 non-GAAP diluted EPS is expected to be in the range of $4.82 to $4.86, down from its previous estimate of at least $5.00. FY11 non-GAAP diluted EPS estimates exclude after-tax costs of approximately $1.16 to 1.23 per share, related primarily to restructuring and shutdown costs associated with webOS devices, the amortization and impairment of purchased intangibles, restructuring charges and acquisition-related charges.

HP will host a conference call with the financial community today at 2 p.m. PT / 5 p.m. ET to discuss these announcements well as HP’s third quarter 2011 financial results. The call is accessible via an audio webcast at

Source: HP

MacDailyNews Take: Splat! And, just like that, Ruby’s folly comes to an end. Buh-bye, webOS.

And, yup, we told you so, years ago:

“In our opinion, there isn’t room, nor is there a need for Palm in a market already crammed full of iPhone wannabes, to say nothing of the iPhone itself. There are more than enough pretend iPhones, thanks. Plus, developers have far too much on their plates already (iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Symbian, etc.).” MacDailyNews Take, January 9, 2009



Related articles:
Unhappy Best Buy wants HP to take back non-selling TouchPads – August 17, 2011
As Apple iPads sell like hotcakes, mountains of unsold tablets pile up in channel – August 15, 2011
People don’t want fake iPads, they want real Apple iPads; HP slashes TouchPad dud by 20% – August 12, 2011
HP TouchPad hits Australia with a resounding ‘meh’ – July 27, 2011
HP bumps Rubinstein from webOS lead after TouchPad launch failure – July 11, 2011
Rubinstein addresses poor HP TouchPad reviews, compares webOS to Apple’s early Mac OS X – July 5, 2011
HP fiddles while Apple innovates – July 10, 2011
Rubinstein addresses poor HP TouchPad reviews, compares webOS to Apple’s early Mac OS X – July 5, 2011
HP TouchPad simply cannot compete with Apple’s iPad 2 – July 5, 2011
Pogue reviews HP TouchPad: ‘Doesn’t come close’ to Apple’s iPad – June 30, 2011
Mossberg: HP TouchPad ‘simply no match’ for Apple iPad 2 – June 30, 2011


      1. Just as GOOG is entering the h/w space, HP is exiting it…

        Not an exact corrolary between the two situations — granted — but it has got to give some GOOG shareholders a shiver…

        1. The timing on this, while probably coincidental, is indeed fascinating nonetheless.

          Though, you’d think HP would have been smart enough to have a hardware partner for webOS lined up *before* breaking this news, rather than after. It’s like HP is repeating Nokia’s mistake of announcing end-of-life for their existing stuff, without having the future in place yet.

        2. Google was a few days early in buying MoMo. If it had waited, it could have bought WEB OS nd its designs and canned Android to get around the patent issues (assuming Web OS is “clean”. It could then phase out Android. Forces all the Droid heads to buy new phones in a couple of years. No need to get into the hardware business. Maybe they should pay off MoMo – $2.5 billion) . They would regain 50 points in a heartbeat.

          On the other hand, maybe Apple shoudl buy Web OS to keep it out of enemy hands.

    1. It is garage sale time. Got any Palm patents you no longer need? Apple (and others) will take them off your hands HP. There is a market for those but not for iPad killers.

      Time to turn those lemons into lemon aid (if you can).

      1. If memory serves, Steve Jobs made a friendly offer to Palm to buy them out about 10 years ago. Palm laughed at him, just like Mikey “SITDAGTMBTTS” Dell.

        Once again, who is laughing now?

      2. There is a market for iPad killers. Just iPad fluffers. We haven’t seen anything that could even dent their armor let alone kill them. So they’re stuck sucking Apple’s you know what.

    2. This one was DOA from the get go, notwithstanding HP’s chest thumping a few months ago.

      Given the recent plethora of tablet/phone news at MDN, seems this site ought to be renamed IOSDailyNews…just sayin’

    3. It’s precisely the feeling that a company like HP might abandon a product that also keeps people away from trying it (imagine how the few people who bought TouchPads feel now?). People KNOW Apple will stay with something and provide a complete solution. Even Microsoft is known to run away from something and stability is a notable Apple mainstay. Go with something you know is going to stick around and right now there aren’t any other companies than Apple you can trust like this. They deserve the worship they get from the faithful and others for this.

      1. Apple walks away from products more than anyone. Apple server anyone? Rosetta now gone? Killed Newton?

        I’m guessing the issue is HP made a major push to developers to get applications for webos, and they must have been unceremoniously turned down. I’m guessing between iOS, Android and Windows 7 / 8, there’s no development budget left to do meaningful work. In this case it really is the chicken or the egg.

        Android got its start and toe hold because of Verizon and other areas where Apple had exclusively, as the number of units increased, the developers started working. Remember the App difference early on, iOS was creaming Android, but Android caught up, maybe not in number, but certainly in breadth of applications due to the available number of handsets out there to sell to. Webos had no such retail supporter, and thus can’t take flight.

    1. Be interesting to see if HP licenses webOS or sells it to the highest bidder – definitely more of a market to get their money’s worth, in the wake of the Google-Motorola Mobility tie-up. (And they might be thinking of selling off Palm’s patent portfolio to the highest bidder, too.)

      1. HP said they will consider selling off PC division, but there is no intent to sell WebOS. HP will keep the IP (not very significant) and software engineers to themselves (more significant).

    2. Which best features?

      To be able to watch a video on the left side of a screen with your one eye, while simultaneously edit an electronic mail on the right side of a creen with your another eye?

      Well, maybe I misses actually useful features?

    1. Yes, HP certainly isn’t Microsoft, who drags out loser products until the bitter end (when no one will notice or care that they are canceled). Aren’t they still selling Zune HD?

      (Actually, not always true; Microsoft canceled Kin in record time.)

        1. Also, Kin was released just a few months before Windows Phone 7. Microsoft had intentionally (or inadvertently through lack of internal planning and coordination) set things up so that one part of Microsoft was competing with another part.

          They tried to vaguely differentiate Kin as a phone for “younger” people, but ultimately, they just needed an excuse to get it out of the way (and out of the public and tech media attention) in time for the Windows Phone 7 release. Microsoft couldn’t kill Kin fast enough. (Didn’t really matter though, because public and tech media attention was focused squarely on iPad by that time.)

          Unlike Microsoft and HP, all of Apple seems to be very well coordinated, marching in the same direction, on the same sheet of music, etc…

  1. That explains why Futureshop sold the Touchpad to its employes earlier this week for $150. A fellow employe where I work got his hands on one today and I was comparing it to my iPad first gen, you would think HP used a photo copier to design the physical device (Except for materials).

  2. Who would have expected them to give it up so quickly? Microsoft, for example, has no problem sinking billion after billion, year after year, into X-box, until, decade later, it begins to show profit. You’d think HP, being a fairly large company, could afford to lose some money on that Web OS for a few years until it begins to show promise. Especially since many objective observers claim that the OS was the best out there among iPhone’s competitors.

    Well, good luck with your next effort, HP. I’m not sure what Bill and David (Hewlett and Packard, respectively) would have said if they had lived long enough to witness all this, but I don’t think they would have been all that pleased.

  3. well I didn’t expect this.. Although I do love Apple I think we have to respect webos and the palm phones as an original and neat idea! I mean in someways that OS was more Apple than Apple.. Would rather have them competing with HP(webos) than the copycat android and the grey haired blackberry phones. It’s sad to see this fresh OS die :/ shame it didn’t catch on.

    1. I agree. My girlfriend has a Palm Pixi as her business phone, and WebOS is actually really nice. I’ve said it before, but WebOS does several things better than iOS up to this point.

      WebOS on the TouchPad however, was a horrible experience. I had a chance to play with one briefly, and couldn’t believe how bad it was, but I think that was mostly due to crappy hardware (and possibly a lack of WebOS optimization).

      WebOS, RIP.

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