HP has announced it will make an executive decision on the star-crossed, ill-managed webOS operating system in the next two weeks.
The printer giant, which canned production of webOS devices earlier this year citing slow uptake, never quite revealed what would happen to the platform and the hundreds of employees that worked on it.
The company already fired 525 staff in the webOS hardware division, while the software team were integrated into the Office of Strategy and Technology. However, their fate, along with the platform’s, now looks close to being decided and we have a feeling it won’t be a happy one.
Speaking to French paper Le Figaro, HP CEO Meg Whitman said: "We should announce our decision in the next two weeks.
“This is not an easy decision, because we have a team of 600 people, which is in limbo. We need to have another operating system.”
Even if HP decides to offload the OS to another firm, it is unlikely to recoup anywhere near the $1.2billion it spent in acquiring it. Amazon, which recently launched Android-powered Kindle Fire tablets, is rumoured to be a potential buyer. Another option would be for it to license out the platform to smaller manufacturers, but with Android already dominating that sector, it’s hard to imagine webOS making the comeback we’re hoping for.
Whatever transpires, we’ll find out soon enough. Just brace yourself for the possibility that webOS as we knew it is dead.