HP to Kill Off its webOS Devices

As rumors of HP splitting off its PC business swirled around the Internet, the company today announced that it was discontinuing operations for webOS devices, specifically the TouchPad and webOS phones. 

The computer giant purchased Palm (which included its webOS operating system) in April 2010 for $1.2 billion, and released the TouchPad, the first tablet running webOS, in June. However, that device has been plagued by poor reviews and sales, even after a price cut of $150. 

HP also confirmed in a press release that it is in discussions to acquire  Autonomy, a U.K. based database search company, and that HP’s Board of directors has authorized the exploration of spinning off its Personal Systems Group. 

HP is hosting a conference call today at 5 pm to discuss these announcements, as well as its third-quarter financial results.  The company reported revenue of $31.2 billion for the quarter, compared with $30.7 billion one year ago. 

Update (5 pm): While HP may be killing off its webOS devices, the company will look to license the operating system, according to a tweet by Richard Kerris, the vice president of worldwide developer relations for HP.

5:14 pm: HP confirmed in its conference call that it will acquire Autonomy for 25.50 pounds per share. 

5:23: HP’s CFO: “We made a bet on webOS. We set clear metrics and milestones to measure webOS’ sucess. The sellthrough was not what we expected…Even with price reduction, the TouchPad and webOS phone have not met our financial targets. “

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