Whatever is going on with Palm

April 18, 2010 § Leave a comment

Since its announcement on Jan 8, 2009, the Palm webOS mobile operating system has garnered quite a bit of attention in the mobile world and why not. Being the pioneer in the PDA segment with the original Palm Pilot, Palm’s fortunes had dwindled in recent years. The webOS was destined to be the knight in shining armor for a once beacon and now wounded warrior in the industry. Early reviews of the Palm Pre were generally positive and those of the webOS were extremely positive. But the simultaneous assault of the tremendously popular iPhone OS and the rapidly growing Android ecosystem not to mention the millions of Crackberry faithful, has put the future of the promising webOS in question.

The last few months have seen the stock plummet (chart) and some high profile executive changes. With disappointing 2Q results, there is tremendous pressure on the management to sell the company to the highest bidder (link1)(link 2). Analysts are all over the place running their calculations to compute the fair value per share if there was a buyout. Amidst all this, Palm has announced that it is coming to ATT in the US and Vodafone and O2 in Europe. It has also announced in recent months, a foray into 3D gaming on its platform. All this is heartening to see when there is so much confusion and speculation surrounding its future.

One only hopes that Palm manages to survive and provide meaningful competition to the iPhone and Android OS. The webOS is a very innovative mobile OS that has forced Google and Apple to rethink some key features in their road-maps and such innovation is good for the industry and the user community as a whole. Everyone benefits!


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