By now, we all know the sad story of webOS and how it has one last, slim chance at being successful but that’s not stopping former Palm and HP employees from discussing what went wrong with the innovative platform. Not surprisingly, we have multiple accounts which place the blame on different things.
The New York Times spoke with former Palm senior director of software Paul Mercer and he said webOS was just too early and didn’t have the right execution.
“Palm was ahead of its time in trying to build a phone software platform using Web technology, and we just weren’t able to execute such an ambitious and breakthrough design,” Mercer told the Times. “Perhaps it never could have been executed because the technology wasn’t there yet.”
That’s a very reasonable take but it’s also somewhat couched: Palm was just reaching too high for the stars and it’s impossible to execute its amazing vision because it was too far ahead of the time. Or something like that. A few employees also spoke about webOS in that article off the record and points some of the blame at Jon Rubinstein. There’s also the idea that Palm just didn’t have the resources to actually pull this off – webOS was conceived and developed in about nine months – and to continue to evolve the platform.
That’s why the HP purchase was supposed to be a match made in heaven because it definitely had the resources to go toe-to-toe with Apple, Google and Microsoft but it’s management was in disarray and webOS suffered because of it. Go ahead and click on the “via” link below, as it’s a nice read.
[Via New York Times]