Jon Rubinstein, the former CEO of Palm, has left HP. AllThingsD broke the news Friday afternoon, noting that Rubinstein had served his promised 12-24 month tenure with the company before leaving. “Jon has fulfilled his commitment and we wish him well,” HP spokeswoman Mylene Mangalindan told AllThingsD. Rubinstein led the team responsible for the original iPod and left Apple in 2006 to eventually join Palm as CEO in 2009. While at Palm, Rubinstein was responsible for, among other projects, the development of the Palm Pre and Palm’s webOS mobile operating system, both of which were transferred to HP in 2010 When it acquired Palm for $1.2 billion. HP has since open-sourced the mobile operating system after failing to gain traction with its Pre, Pixi, Veer and TouchPad products. More →
Speaking at HP’s webOS Developer Day in New York City, developer advocate Josh Marinacci noted that webOS 2.0 would be coming to all webOS devices “in the coming months.” While the timeline lacks the specificity we prefer, it is nice to know that the full array of Palm devices will get the new OS goodies soonish. Hit the jump to see the full presentation from Mr. Marinacci.
Today, HP announced that AT&T’s Palm Pixi Plus would — finally — be getting the webOS 1.4.5 update. The new bits add several new bug fixes and, most notably, add support for Palm’s Plug-in Developer Kit (PDK). Hit the “Updates” application on your AT&T Pixi to manually grab the new code. More →
Might as well keep the webOS news coming, no? If you have a Verizon Palm Pixi Plus you’ll be happy to know that your friends over at VZW are pushing out webOS 1.4.5 to your device. The update’s change log looks like this:
Version: webOS 1.4.5
Release date: 30 August 2010
Feature changes to existing applications
Palm Pixi and Palm Pixi Plus phones can now run 3D games and other apps developed with the webOS PDK. Check App Catalog for titles that are compatible with your phone.
This release includes minor fixes and enhancements to support the public release of the webOS PDK.
If a user enters text in a field on certain websites, the screen focus now remains on the text being entered.
This release fixes a rare problem so that podcasts now download correctly.
This release addresses several security issues with the Palm webOS software.
The new code weighs in at around 14 Mb and can be had by hitting the System Update button in your phone’s preferences.
Thanks, Steve! More →
If you’re a webOS die-hard, and are looking for a game so addictive it should come with a warning label, look no further. Palm and developer Rovio have just announced that the wildly popular game Angry Birds, which is already available for iOS devices, can now be purchased for your Palm Pre or Palm Pixi. The basic premise of the game has you slinging birds, who happen to look angry, towards obstacles in an effort to kill green pigs. The official game summary looks like this:
“Lemme tell ya, these ain’t no ordinary finches we’re talkin’ about. These here are the Angry Birds, the ones that’s gonna kick you in the ‘nads. And they’re the ones on your side. They must be from Galapadapados, or sumptin’.” – Col. Angus, Bird Expert. The survival of the Angry Birds is at stake. Dish out revenge on the green pigs who stole the Birds’ eggs. Use the unique destructive powers of the Angry Birds to lay waste to the pigs’ fortified castles. Angry Birds features hours of gameplay, challenging physics-based castle demolition, and lots of replay value. Each of the 150 levels requires logic, skill, and brute force to crush the enemy. Protect wildlife, or play Angry Birds!
The game can be purchased for $1.99 and requires webOS 1.4.5 or higher. If you need a new game on your Pre or Pixi we suggest giving Angry Birds a shot. Oh… if you figure out how to get past level 3-15 on the first board, do let us know. More →
Here is a fresh webOS 2.0 rumor for you. Developer Zhephree is the author of a Foursquare application for Palm’s beleaguered mobile operating system, webOS. Recently, while checking the logs of his Foursquare application, he noticed an entry for webOS 2.0 on a device listed as “Roadrunner.” A webOS 2.0 launch is rumored for the end of this year and we all know that some new hardware is way overdue. Zhephree did tell PreCentral that the information could be forged, but as he put it:
[…] the source for foursquare is open and on GitHub. Someone with the knowledge could easily download the source, modify the Metrix JS library I have included, and force it to post to my Metrix stats with whatever string they want. Granted, it would take some effort, but it’s doable.
Seems like an awful lot of work to hope a developer checks their application logs. We’ve got an image of Zhephree’s application metrics after the break.
Reports are circulating that Palm is releasing webOS 1.4.5 for its Pre and Pixi handsets. The update is reportedly being pushed out to handsets worldwide including those on Sprint and the French carrier SFR. The update addresses several security flaws, fixes an error when downloading podcasts, improves text entry in web page text fields, and provides support for webOS PDK. Palm’s website is a bit confused on the update with the SFR update appearing on the support page for Sprint. Thankfully, most webOS owners will receive the update over-the-air and have the proper version delivered to their handsets. Verizon Wireless and AT&T customers will have to wait for webOS 1.4.5 as the two American carriers are apparently not included in the first wave of updates. Any webOS owners not on Big Red or Ma Bell have webOS 1.4.5 delivered to their handsets yet?
Unofficial sources are letting it be known that the Palm shareholder meeting held Friday morning ended on a positive note with the shareholders approving the buyout offer from HP. The reportedly short and sweet meeting was awash with tidbits of interesting information regarding the future of Palm and webOS which include:
- Confirmation that Rubenstein will lead the new Mobility unit which include the Palm assets and HP’s current iPaq division
- The merger is expected to close the first week of July
- Lots of excitement regarding webOS 2.0 and new devices that are under development
- Sell through is improving but current handsets are still selling slowly (Verizon reportedly ordered 1 million at launch and none for this quarter)
- AT&T’s training and launch went smoother than VZW with AT&T’s staff better prepared to sell the current crop of webOS handsets
Hopefully all of this good news will be confirmed by an official source so we can turn our eyes from the financial details of the merger to the exciting product outcomes that will come from HP/Palm.
Palm’s brain drain shows no signs of letting up, as it was revealed today that Rich Dellinger, the man responsible for many of the icons in webOS and the creation of the “non-intrusive banner notification system used in webOS”, has left the company after 3 years and 11 months. Now a senior UI designer at Apple, it appears that Dellinger left Palm immediately after it was announced that HP was purchasing Palm for $1.2 billion. Many are speculating that Dellinger was hired in an effort to help turn Apple’s obnoxiously obtrusive push notification system into something more in line with what is offered by webOS and Android.
It’s no secret that carriers like AT&T, Sprint and Verizon have no little faith they’ll be able to snap up a slew of new subs with webOS handsets, but that isn’t stopping them from releasing them. Over the weekend the Palm Pixi Plus went on sale with AT&T. At $50 on contract, the Pixi Plus is a third of the price of its sibling the Pre Plus, but that’s a small amount to pay for the joy sticking out in a sea of Android, Apple and BlackBerry smartphones. More →
We have a hard time imaging that AT&T’s Pixi Plus will be met with as much fanfare as its Sprint, or even Verizon, counterparts (yes, we are being cheeky). However, in the event you’ve spent countless, sleepless nights thinking about shoving your dirty little AT&T SIM card into an innocent Pixi, prepare yourself for a special video treat after the jump. More →
Sprint’s decision to enter into a lengthy and costly exclusivity period with the Palm Pre and Pixi was a bad idea. You know it, we know it, and now Sprint is finally admitting it knows it, too. During a conference call with analysts Monday, CFO Robert Brust conceded that “the Pre didn’t work out as well as we hoped” having failed to help put Sprint stop bleeding post-paid customers and fill its books with black ink. Though he was careful to also point to supply issues as playing a significant role in saga, Brust said Sprint learned valuable lessons which it will put to use on its next saviour, the HTC EVO 4G. And simply because there are some rumors circulating that Sprint might play a part selling the oft-rumored CDMA iPhone, Brust said Sprint would “love to have it” but said he was not aware of any plans to carry the mythical device.
In a statement on its blog Saturday, Palm has apologized to webOS users for a recent bug in its App Catalog which made it virtually impossible for users to download both free and paid applications. After selecting to purchase an app, end users received a pop-up notification stating “Install Failed” upon the completion of the download. The following is Palm product manager Joe Hayashi’s statement:
If you’ve experienced any issues downloading or updating apps from the Palm App Catalog recently, rest assured that Palm is actively working to remedy the situation. If you’ve purchased an app, the transaction has been properly recorded and as soon as this issue is resolved, you’ll be able to access all apps you’ve purchased (or, in the case of free apps, requested to download).
If patience is not one of your strong points, the folks at PreCentral are reporting that going into device settings, turning off network time and reverting the devices calendar to any date before Saturday, May 10th will temporarily remedy the issue. Of course we can’t imagine this work-around will be too attractive since it will mess with people’s calendars, but as the saying goes “desperate times, desperate measures.” Luckily, the work around isn’t necessary as Palm has just fixed the issue. More →