HP’s Next webOS Smartphone Could Debut in October

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Although there is nothing definitive yet, there is growing evidence that the successor for the Palm Pre is going to be released in October.

Palm Pre PlusThe Pre — the first smartphone with the webOS — debuted in the summer of 2009, and was followed by the Palm Pixi in the fall.

These models were slightly updated with the Pre Plus and Pixi Plus last winter, but all of them are starting to show their age. This has left many wondering when the next webOS-based smartphone is going to be released.

A pair of leaks from Verizon Wireless may have the answer. According to a document leaking out of this carrier, the official “End of Life” date for the Palm Pre Plus is October 21. This would clear the way for a replacement.

A separate report says that the Palm Pre 2 will be released by Verizon in October. No details were revealed by this source, but if it really is named the Pre 2, this smartphone could easily have much in common with its predecessor.  This might make it another slider with a portrait-oriented keyboard.

The Palm Pixi Pro reportedly isn’t going to reach the end of its run until March 31, 2011, about a year after its release.

New Company, Same OS
The webOS was originally developed by Palm, Inc., but after long years of being a small fish in a big market, this company was acquired by HP last month.

The financial problems leading up to the acquisition have almost certainly led to delays in Palm introducing new products, and the process of being acquired likely added to these.

Still, the deal will have long-term benefits for the webOS. Palm had a hard time competing against Apple and Google in the smartphone market, but HP has large cash reserves for product development and advertising.

HP executives have said their company intends to use the webOS on smartphones, tablets, and even printers. After ears of making phones and PDAs based on operating systems from Microsoft, HP has committed to basing its mobile products on the webOS.

More about the Palm Pre Plus and the webOS
The Pre Plus features a sliding keyboard as well as a 3.1-inch multi-touch-capable Touchscreen with a 480 x 320 pixel resolution. This device comes with 16 GB of internal storage, and is also equipped with Wi-Fi b/g, Bluetooth 2.1, GPS, and a 3.0 megapixel camera with LED flash.

This smartphone runs the webOS, the replacement for the venerable Palm OS. This is a multi-tasking, touch-oriented operating system able to wirelessly synchronize a wide variety of data with online services like Google, Yahoo, and Facebook, as well as Microsoft Exchange. The webOS includes an on-device app store, and a growing collection of third-party software is available.

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