HP today announced it will contribute its Palm webOS software to the open source community and even plans to continue being active in the development and support of webOS. By combining the innovative webOS platform with the development power of the open source community, there is, according to HP, an opportunity to significantly improve applications and web services for the next generation of devices (whoever should manufacture these). webOS offers a number of benefits to the entire ecosystem of web applications. For developers, applications can be easily built using standard web technologies. In addition, its single integrated stack offers multiplatform portability.
For device manufacturers, it provides a single web-centric platform to run across multiple devices. As a result, the end user benefits from a fast, immersive user experience.
"webOS is the only platform designed from the ground up to be mobile, cloud-connected and scalable,” said Meg Whitman, HP president and chief executive officer. “By contributing this innovation, HP unleashes the creativity of the open source community to advance a new generation of applications and devices."
HP will make the underlying code of webOS available under an open source license. Developers, partners, HP engineers and other hardware manufacturers can deliver ongoing enhancements and new versions into the marketplace.
HP will engage the open source community to help define the charter of the open source project under a set of operating principles:
- The goal of the project is to accelerate the open development of the webOS platform
- HP will be an active participant and investor in the project
- Good, transparent and inclusive governance to avoid fragmentation
- Software will be provided as a pure open source project
HP also will contribute ENYO, the application framework for webOS, to the community in the near future along with a plan for the remaining components of the user space.
While it's good news, that webOS isn't fading away silently, it could be also the start of a silent and painful death. Nevertheless, beginning today, HP invites developers and customers to provide input and suggestions.
Cheers ~ Arne