2 reasons why HP and Amazon should team-up to drive webOS forward

I’ve been thinking a lot about the webOS prospects recently. You may’ve read my rant on why Nokia should’ve picked Palm/HP’s rather than Microsoft’s mobile platform and now I want to make a case why HP should pitch Amazon to make a webOS-based tablet and how the two companies can help drive webOS forward. I have two reasons why a strategic deal between HP and Amazon could be beneficial for both companies.

1. Amazon Appstore – there’s no good reason to offer Android apps only

Amazon doesn’t have a mobile platform of its own and has no reasons to prefer one platform over another. All they (should) care is that the platform is open enough so they have a room to build and ultimately extract value. The online retail giant already offers Kindle app for most smartphones and tablets excluding Symbian, so why would their Appstore had to be “Android only”? I don’t think it should be that way and adding another platform like webOS could only bring benefits. Similarly, HP could take advantage from expanded offering and another channel for distributing apps – the fact that webOS developers should appreciate as well.

2. HP could help Amazon make webOS-based Kindle

On one hand this could be a huge win for HP as it would be able to get millions of users on to the platform. On the other hand, Amazon could ask HP to pick a part of the tab (i.e. pay a portion of the manufacturing costs) to ultimately make the Kindle tablet more affordable to the end users. The online retailer would still offer its application for other smartphones and tablets as well as the e-ink based readers.

Sounds like a plan! What do you think?

  • Sorry, but even as a former loyal Palm customer: WebOS is dead. Period.

    • James McP

      HP would do better to partner with MS to ensure the purely HTML5 apps can easily be bundled for both WebOS and Windows8 (tablet). Both are in a hard place in the market and need that volume of apps to compete. WebOS makes it easy for devs to cross-compile 3D games to both iOS apps and WebOS so it isn’t a big sea change for Palm (Not sure about HP culture yet). For the Chase/citibank/Newsweek/Time apps that are either cached content delivery or what amounts to a local cache of a web page, there’s a better chance of developing for a shared 15% of the market compared to a pair of 7% oses.

    • Mo

      Don’t think so. I only used to use BlackBerry for both business and personal, but not anymore. I’m tired of the same crap that is coming from RIM. So what did i do, I bought a Pre2. It is easy to use, use of gestures/tough screen which works, and a intuitive OS. Once it’s marketed correctly and people see/use it, it will be a different story.

  • Butler Dustin

    Brilliant! That is the best creative, smart business, idea I’ve heard in a long time on any talking head tech site. And for the first commenter: just wait till it gets going…

  • Retirecom

    As a longtime (1 month after launch) Pre user and new Kindle user, I’d love to see this.  HP/Palm has a tough road ahead for several reasons but if navigated thoughtfully, I think they can make it. WebOS is a slick mobile OS and continues to improve.  I’m a little annoyed that some things haven’t made it to webOS yet, but the productivity features I need are well done and a pleasure to use. 
    I found myself frustrated initially with my Kindle when I couldn’t use gestures to navigate.  🙂

  • R0b0t D3v1L

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see a tighter integration than we see right now.  Jon Rubinstein was on the Amazon board of directors 6 months ago and I assume that he still is.   I am not up on my board ethics, but if there was as large of a conflict of interest as there would appear to be if Amazon was working on a non webOS tablet, I don’t think Rubinstein would be there. 

    Is it possible that the 7inch Opel tablet rumored to be released this fall is kindle tablet?  It would fall in line size wise much better than the Touchpad does as a device that is used primarily for reading books.  

  • Anonymous

    HP did say that it would work with companies that could offer unique advantages to push webOS forward and I believe Amazon does fit the bill. What’s interesting is that Amazon could offer an Android tablet without any Google services and still deliver an interesting product. It could do its own app store, write a quality e-mail app and offer music and video services

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