HP's webOS is not the only mobile operating system with an uncertain future. According to an article published by DigiTimes over the weekend, Intel intends to temporarily halt development of its MeeGo OS "due to lack of enthusiasm for the platform from handset and tablet PC vendors." The site's sources say Intel will instead focus on hardware products, with its handset platforms to be paired with either Android or Windows Phone in 2012.
The chip giant has since come forward to clarify that it "remains committed to MeeGo and will continue to work with the community to develop and help meet the needs of customers and end users with open source." It doesn't seem like they outright denied the temporary hiatus, though, only saying they don't comment on industry speculation or rumor.
Announced in February of 2010, MeeGo is essentially a mash-up of Nokia's Maemo OS and Intel's Moblin operating system, which was intended to support the ARM architecture and Intel's x86 processors.
Regardless of Intel's next move, MeeGo is already walking on thin ice after ongoing delays and Nokia's decision to throw all its weight behind Windows Phone as its primary platform. The cell phone maker still has plans to sell the MeeGo-based N9 towards the end of the year but it will very likely be their last -- and it won't even launch in the US or UK.
Other manufacturers have shown at least a little interest in the platform, with Asus planning a netbook 'reboot' by announcing a MeeGo-equipped Eee PC X101 for $199, though it will take more than that to save the OS.
In related news, PreCentral has managed to get their hands on an internal HP memo that somewhat describes how things are going to go down now that they've made the decision to kill off webOS consumer devices. Apparently the hardware unit will remain under the Personal Systems Group (PSG) business that HP is trying to sell or spinoff, while the software portion of webOS will be pushed over to HP's Office of Strategy and Technology (OS&T), and report to Executive Vice President Shane Robinson, as the company works on defining the best monetization model for it.
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