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HP reportedly cutting jobs at WebOS division

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Hewlett-Packard is reportedly laying off as many as 525 employees from its WebOS division after deciding to stop making WebOS devices and, so far, failing to find a partner to license its mobile operating system.

Officials at HP were unavailable for comment on the job cuts on Tuesday morning, but told website All Things D that the layoffs were part of its plans in winding down its WebOS hardware business.

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‘During this time, we stand by our commitment to our webOS customers and will work to ensure that support and service for customers are not adversely affected. HP is exploring ways to leverage webOS software,’ HP told All Things D in a statement.

HP announced in mid-August that it would stop making WebOS smartphones and the WebOS-running TouchPad tablet, and that the company would look for other hardware partners to take on the operating system first developed by Palm. HP bought the struggling Palm in April 2010 for $1.2 billion.

Shortly after announcing HP would stop making WebOS hardware, it slashed the TouchPad tablet down to a starting price of $99, which led to sellouts at retailers in the U.S. and Canada.

While the TouchPad was able to generate a level of interest in a WebOS device that wasn’t seen until the hardware side’s demise and HP execs have said WebOS could live on in some form, HP doesn’t seem to be reversing any of its announced plans.

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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles

twitter.com/nateog

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