When the original Palm Pre was unveiled, it looked like Palm was ready to turn the industry on its head and keep it there. The design of the Pre was interesting and unique, but more than anything else webOS was ready to give customers exactly what they wanted in a mobile operating system. When the original Pixi launched, people were wondering why Palm wasn’t focusing on higher-end devices – even if the Pixi was a good phone, it seemed odd to many customers. And then when Verizon and AT&T launched the Pre Plus and Pixi Plus devices, the biggest question popped up: where’s new hardware?
Sure, the Pre Plus and Pixi Plus had new features and tweaks that the previous models didn’t have, but they were the same phones. Same design and a majority of similar features and specifications from what had already been released, so what was Palm doing? Biding time until they released something groundbreaking again? No, that wasn’t the case, because then we got the Pre 2 and that was a disappointment no matter how you look at it.
HP’s CEO Leo Apotheker, in a recent interview with the Wall Street Journal, admitted that HP has to be faster to market with their products. This is something that Palm needed to get a grasp on, along with actually making new products. Now, I’m sure there were all sorts of things holding Palm up in creating new devices, but that didn’t matter to the general consumer. webOS was left to die on hardware that people weren’t particularly fond of for one reason or another.
And even with the announcement of the HP Veer, the HP Pre 3, and the HP TouchPad, we’re left to wait. None of these devices will be out for several months. In the interim, though, we’ve got the Pre 2 that just went on sale for Verizon. Which means Verizon just launched an outdated handset. How does that make sense to anyone?
Apotheker is absolutely right. HP does need to get their products out faster, and they need to start with the three new webOS-based devices they recently announced. These devices are genuinely worthwhile, and the next generation of webOS needs to get out and into the world. Unfortunately, we just have to wait.
If you’re thinking about the Pre 3, or any other of the webOS-based devices that were recently announced, are you bummed and even a little turned off that they aren’t coming out sooner? Do you think HP should try harder to get these devices to the market faster? Let me know in the comments below.