Palm (NASDAQ:PALM) wants the market to know: it's still alive and kicking.
A member of Palm's webOS team created a stir by confirming that the company, which Hewlett-Packard is in the process of acquiring, is working on new devices as well as a new version of the smartphone maker's operating system, webOS.
"I'm not allowed to talk about future roadmaps, especially because we're in the process of being acquired by HP, so I can't say," Josh Marinacci, a member of Palm's developer relations team, said on a webinar hosted by AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T). "But yes, we have a road map. We are working on future devices. And [a] new version of the OS. So I think, you're going to find the next year very exciting."
While not entirely surprising, the comments are notable in the wake of recent remarks by HP CEO Mark Hurd. Speaking at an investor conference, Hurd said that HP did not spend $1.2 billion to buy Palm so it could be in the smartphone business, and instead focused on webOS as a piece of intellectual property. HP quickly sought to clarify Hurd's comments, and said that HP acquired Palm and webOS for "an array of interconnected devices, including tablets, printers and, of course, smartphones."
HP's purchase of Palm, which it announced in April after weeks of frenzied speculation about Palm's fate, is expected to close by the end of July. The company's smartphones had not been selling well, even after renewed marketing efforts from Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ). According to a report in May from the NPD Group, webOS had the smallest share of any operating system in the U.S. market in the first quarter.
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