It’s been no secret that Palm was shopping around for a buyer. The company was in pretty dire financial shape, despite launching a brand new mobile operating system and several new phones in the last year or so, both of which have been pretty warmly received by reviewers… if not necessarily widely adopted by consumers. And now it looks like HP has stepped in with a bit o cash which will either save Palm… or give HP a pretty big asset which it can use to compete in the mobile space with new devices released under the HP name.
HP is no stranger in the mobile device market. The company’s Jornada line of handheld and Pocket PC devices running Windows Mobile were some of the best around… 5 to 10 years ago. And when HP acquired Compaq, the company continued pumping out iPaq devices running Windows Mobile. You can still purchase iPaq model PDAs and phones today, but they’re hardly big players on the mobile scene.
By purchasing Palm, it looks like HP will be banking on Palm’s WebOS mobile operating system.
The deal is expected to close by July 31st, and I suspect we’ll have more details about what this means for Palm, WebOS, and HP in the coming months.