touchpad WebOS developers say HP TouchPad was doomed from start

Developers who worked on WebOS have revealed that HP's rival to Apple's iPad, the TouchPad, was doomed from the start, thanks to a number of design flaws.

Developers who worked on WebOS have revealed that HP's rival to Apple's iPad, the TouchPad, was doomed from the start, thanks to a number of design flaws.

 
Paul Mercer, the former senior director of software at Palm, which HP acquired for $1.2 billion in 2010, said that his company was ahead of its time and just was not able to achieve the ambitious outcome it aimed for with the mobile operating system.
 
According to Mercer, who previously worked on a number of Apple products, one of the fatal mistakes of WebOS was its reliance on the open-source software engine WebKit, which ultimately slowed down apps, making it less appealing to opt for WebOS over faster rivals like iOS and Android.
 
An unnamed former member of the WebOS app development team said the main problem was not WebOS itself, but a leadership and engineering failure to secure outside programmers to develop apps for it.
 
touchpad WebOS developers say HP TouchPad was doomed from start
 
Another issue was the numerous shortcuts taken over the nine month development period it took to give life to WebOS, including leaving app development kits until the last minute, which were then overhauled twice, which meant programmers had to relearn how to make apps for the platform several times.
 
Other problems included a lack of staff to appropriately deal with such a large-scale project, with particular difficulties finding programmers who really understood WebKit. This shortage led to a situation where the initial launch was achieved, but updates and bug fixes could not be developed at a quick enough pace. When HP bought Palm many of the core team left, leaving the company with an even bigger manpower problem on its hands.
 
Given these blunders with the software it is no surprise that the TouchPad failed to compete with Apple and Google based products. Mercer said that as long as WebOS depends on WebKit it will continue to linger far behind its rivals.