Tough news for webOS fans today, as HP just announced that it will no longer sell hardware based on the mobile operating system that it bought from Palm last year. In a statement that just hit the wire, HP said that it plans to "discontinue operations for webOS devices, specifically the TouchPad and webOS phones." The company went on to say that it will explore its options when it comes to what to do with the webOS software.
To say that today's news caught folks off-guard would be an understatement, and it's definitely disappointing to see webOS stumble like this. It's unclear what this announcement means for the platform going forward, although we've heard talk of HP possibly licensing webOS out to other manufacturers. Perhaps now that Google and Motorola have gotten into bed together, companies like Samsung and HTC may be more interested in using webOS on their devices? We'll see.
UPDATE: HP announced during its earnings call that it plans to shut down its webOS hardware division by Q4 2011. It also touched a bit on TouchPad sales, saying that "the sell-through of the product was not what we expected."
UPDATE 2: According to an HP "insider" speaking to This is my next, webOS GBU VP Stephen DeWitt said today at an all-hands meeting that HP is "not walking away from webOS." DeWitt also indicated that HP is likely planning to license webOS, says the source. When asked about licensing the OS to HTC or Samsung, HP VP Todd Bradley reportedly said that webOS is designed to work with Qualcomm chips and that many potential companies would likely want webOS to work with other kinds of chipsets.
HP Confirms Discussions with Autonomy Corporation plc Regarding Possible Business Combination; Makes Other Announcements
PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--HP (NYSE: HPQ) today commented on the recent announcement by Autonomy Corporation plc (LSE: AU.L). HP confirms that it is in discussions with Autonomy regarding a possible offer for the company.
HP also reported that it plans to announce that its board of directors has authorized the exploration of strategic alternatives for its Personal Systems Group (PSG). HP will consider a broad range of options that may include, among others, a full or partial separation of PSG from HP through a spin-off or other transaction.
In addition, HP reported that it plans to announce that it will discontinue operations for webOS devices, specifically the TouchPad and webOS phones. HP will continue to explore options to optimize the value of webOS software going forward.
HP today announced preliminary results for the third fiscal quarter 2011, with revenue of $31.2 billion compared with $30.7 billion one year ago.
In the third quarter, preliminary GAAP diluted earnings per share (EPS) was $0.93 and non-GAAP diluted EPS was $1.10, compared with third quarter fiscal 2010 GAAP diluted EPS of $0.75 and non-GAAP diluted EPS of $1.08. Non-GAAP diluted EPS estimates exclude after-tax costs related primarily to the amortization of purchased intangible assets of approximately $0.17 per share and $0.33 per share in the third quarter of fiscal 2011 and fiscal 2010, respectively.
For the fourth fiscal quarter of 2011, HP estimates revenue of approximately $32.1 billion to $32.5 billion, GAAP diluted EPS in the range of $0.44 to $0.55, and non-GAAP diluted EPS in the range of $1.12 to $1.16. Non-GAAP diluted EPS guidance excludes after-tax costs of approximately $0.61 to $0.68 per share, related primarily to restructuring and shutdown costs associated with webOS devices, the amortization and impairment of purchased intangibles, restructuring charges and acquisition-related charges.
HP estimates full-year FY11 revenue will be approximately $127.2 billion to $127.6 billion, down from its previous estimate of $129 billion to $130 billion. FY11 GAAP diluted EPS is expected to be in the range of $3.59 to $3.70, down from its previous estimate of at least $4.27, and FY11 non-GAAP diluted EPS is expected to be in the range of $4.82 to $4.86, down from its previous estimate of at least $5.00. FY11 non-GAAP diluted EPS estimates exclude after-tax costs of approximately $1.16 to 1.23 per share, related primarily to restructuring and shutdown costs associated with webOS devices, the amortization and impairment of purchased intangibles, restructuring charges and acquisition-related charges.
HP will host a conference call with the financial community today at 2 p.m. PT / 5 p.m. ET to discuss these announcements well as HP’s third quarter 2011 financial results. The call is accessible via an audio webcast at www.hp.com/investor/2011q3webcast.
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