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HP seeks buyer for WebOS

For sale, one mobile OS. One previous owner. Will swap for tablet business strategy

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HP is seeking a buyer for WebOS, the mobile operating system it acquired by buying PDA pioneer Palm last year.

So says Reuters, citing a quartet of unnamed sources close to the consultation process by which HP hopes to figure out how to make back some of the $1.2bn is spent on Palm.

HP has at least potential buyers lined up: Amazon, IBM, Intel, Oracle and RIM, the moles say.

Last summer, Samsung was named a possible buyer too, but it went public and rejected the notion.

CEO Meg Whitman, having reversed the decision to sell off the company's PC business - a plan put in motion by her predecessor, Leo Apotheker - has hinted that she might do more with WebOS. Again, it was Apotheker who chose to can the TouchPad tablet and Pre series of smartphones, all based on WebOS.

Reuter's sources suggest that future WebOS-based hardware, from HP at least, is unlikely. ®

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