HP's Rubinstein bullish on webOS tablets, smartphones in 2011

Hewlett-Packard was the most logical suitor for Palm, current HP executive and former Palm CEO Jon Rubinstein said, adding that despite the company's relatively quiet pace of product announcements since its acquisition, "this is not 'game over.'"

current HP executive and former Palm CEO Jon RubinsteinRubinstein, who is now the senior vice president and general manager of the Palm Global Business Unit at HP, said that before Palm was acquired in April the company essentially "ran out of runway," but insisted that by this time next year the newly revitalized Palm will have numerous products launched. "This will be a very different conversation next year," he said at AllThingsD's D: Dive Into Mobile conference.

Rubinstein said the company will deliver an "awesome tablet" next year, though he declined to provide specifics.

Rubinstein also noted that six companies were interested in acquiring Palm earlier this year, though he declined to name the suitors. Previous Securities and Exchange Commission documents said HP fended off four suitors to acquire Palm for $1.2 billion.

"They needed to be in this space, and now they're very jazzed about webOS," Rubinstein said of HP. HP has released a new version of webOS, 2.0, as well as an improved sequel to the Palm Pre.

"We had a great team, a great product, a great product pipeline," Rubinstein said of Palm. "But I think the market moved too fast, and when we looked forward we saw a very clear way to where we could get the company to profitability, but we didn't see a way to get it to scale."

For more:
- see this AllThingsD article
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this NYT blog post

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HP unveils webOS 2.0, Palm Pre 2 bound for Verizon
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