HP (formerly Hewlett-Packard) has announced their smartphone and tablet products are at the end of their respective lines, and are even considering selling off their PC division. This move signals the end of Palm, a company which spearheaded the PDA boom of the 1990s. They have never been able to successfully replicate this success with their smartphone products, despite an intensive battle to do so. Palm products have a loyal fanbase even today, and this will prove sad news to many who have enjoyed their legacy products.
Palm’s latest handset, the Pre, ran on HP’s new operating software called webOS, but has failed to excite much interest. UK mobile operators are disinterested in the Pre 3 smartphone, with none of them planning on selling it directly. The Pre 3’s predecessors, the Palm Pre and Pre 2 didn’t perform well either, although they were released before HP bought the company.
For Pre’s fans, it maybe still possible to get the new device straight from HP or from a variety of online retailers even though no mobile operators are selling it directly. But it’s an inglorious end for the Pre, and Palm have admitted the competition has simply innovated too fast for them to keep up. Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein said “The world moved faster than we expected and we ran out of runway.”
Since Palm’s attempted comebacks, the iPhone’s popularity has grown exponentially, while phones running Android have also increased rapidly. Research has shown that, in terms of sales, comparable Palm products are nowhere compared with Apple, Samsung, Nokia and Blackberry products.
It’s possible that other manufacturers may follow, with LG leading the ranks. The Korean manufacturer hasn’t exactly been setting the world on fire recently, and analysts suggest they may be forced to cut their losses and walk away from the industry. Find out which other mobile phones’ manufacturers are set to scale back operations at phones4u.co.uk.