The announcement came as HP said it also plans to sell or spin off its PC division. Together, the moves would take HP out of the consumer market, though it will continue to sell servers and other equipment to business customers.
Technology developed by Palm (a brand name HP has phased out) may still exist in some form. In an interview, HP CEO Leo Apotheker said the company was disappointed more with the hardware sales than the performance of the webOS software, which it will try to keep alive in some way. HP is studying its options, which could include licensing the software to handset makers or allowing them to use it for free as open-source software, as Google does with Android.
Meanwhile, as eWeek.com notes, HP wouldn't deny rumors that it will soon acquire Autonomy. Bloomberg takes a look at what the deal would mean.Still, for Palm, the decision sounds largely like a death knell that comes after nearly 20 years of mobile technology innovation, ownership changes and failed efforts to become a leader in the handheld market.