HP Kills Off TouchPad, webOS Phones

HP TouchPadHP TouchPadThe complicated mobile development market got just a little simpler yesterday as HP discontinued operations related to the production of webOS mobile phones and tablets. Not sure anyone saw this news coming, despite rumors that sales of the TouchPad in particular had been abysmal and prices for the tablet had recently been slashed. HP will “continue to explore options to optimize the value of webOS software going forward” however so webOS itself isn’t quite dead yet.

webOS is a great piece of software but HP’s hardware didn’t wow and their devices never found a place in a competitive marketplace. The OS itself was great to use. It felt intuitive and responsive, and from a aesthetics and usability perspective might have been the closest thing yet to matching Apple’s iOS. Hopefully HP can find a partner or a buyer for webOS and maybe by this time next year we’ll see webOS software on HTC phones or even the next BlackBerry.

Hey, at least the HP Touchpad lasted one day longer than Microsoft’s Kin.

PhoneGap 1.0 Released

The PhoneGap open source mobile development platform released their 1.0 version on Friday at the first ever PhoneGap Day in Portland. The platform originally launched in 2009 and after some iPhone App Store hiccups, they have steadily improved by fixing bugs, adding features, and extending platform support as they approached their 1.0 release. Seven mobile platforms are currently supported including iOS, Android, Blackberry, WebOS, and Windows Phone 7.

PhoneGap is a development platform that allows our developers to leverage standard web technologies to build native, cross platform mobile applications. HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript (along with server-side databases and code) are used to build the base of the mobile web application and then we can wrap that code with PhoneGap in order to leverage native APIs to access a mobile device’s camera or GPS functionality. That standards-based app can then be deployed to the various platforms and app stores.