Rumor: Much of HP Enyo team to leave for Google

Last December, after months of uncertainty, HP announced its plans for the ill-fated webOS: the mobile operating system would be surrendered to the open-source community, as would its Enyo application framework, and HP would retain an active role in development and support.

That all sounded like a fine plan. Except here’s the thing: according to The Verge, much of the Enyo team is about to defect to Google. The defectors reportedly include project head Matt McNulty and team members "responsible for 99 percent of the code." It looks like neither HP nor Google have confirmed or denied the story officially yet, but The Verge did get the following statement from HP:

We’re pleased with the traction Enyo has gained to date and plan to continue its development along with the open source community. The Open webOS project is on schedule and we remain committed to the roadmap announced in January.

Everything is on track, in other words… for now. But this does sound like a pretty serious blow, and the long-term effect of the departures—if they indeed happen—on Enyo and the webOS remains to be seen. I’m sure the new talent will do interesting things at Google, though.

Comments closed
    • NeelyCam
    • 7 years ago

    HP should’ve signed that non-compete deal with Google, Intel etc.

    • jpostel
    • 7 years ago

    I will reiterate my comment on yesterday’s shortbread:

    [quote<]What is not really being covered by the media is how many people are leaving HP voluntarily. Not that it really makes a dent, but I would bet there are at least 2000 (probably a lot more) open headcount at HP that will simply not be filled as part of this 27000. I can think of 10 people in my extended group at work that have started in the last 18 months having come from HP. They are losing hundreds of people in Palo Alto alone, and lots of empty cubes and offices just sucks the life out of a place.[/quote<] And the thing that some folks fail to understand is that many people who leave voluntarily are good enough to get jobs elsewhere pretty easily, i.e. they are not rank and file seat fillers, but rather experts in their field. Based on their current status, I would estimate 3-5 years before they can get their mojo back, if they can do it at all.

      • Visigoth
      • 7 years ago

      I agree. HP is really losing on many fronts at once. To be quite honest, it doesn’t look like it now, but if HP keeps going in this direction they’ll be either spinning off companies one at a time or go completely bust in about 5-8 years. Something drastic needs to happen, and they need solid leadership for more than just a few quarters.

      If you compare them to, let’s say IBM, they seem to have lost their “edge” in the early 2000’s.

      • moog
      • 7 years ago

      If the cuts are indiscriminate then some good talent will be arbitrarily let go. Even the “bad” ones have potential to be superstars, they just might be a better fit in different roles or excel in different circumstance.

    • tviceman
    • 7 years ago

    The life of webOS has been nothing but a travesty. It’s a real shame to see such a slick and intuitive operating system treated like an adopted red-headed step child and then simply discarded afterwords. I would have loved to have seen webOS flourish.

    • ludi
    • 7 years ago

    Make it happen. HP stopped being serious about its best properties somewhere around five CEOs ago. I would love to see the best features of WebOS merged into the Android framework.

      • willmore
      • 7 years ago

      When was Agilent spun off? That’s the last division that I knew of which actually did anything useful.

        • ludi
        • 7 years ago

        1999, during the first year of Carly Time.

    • dpaus
    • 7 years ago

    WebOS’s loss is Android’s gain. If this team is able to, um, borrow some of WebOS’s core concepts and implement the Enyo tool for Android, well, good for Google. But WebOS diehards (who, me?!!?) are pissed 🙂

    But the people who should be most concerned are Apple. Android with a WebOS GUI and the Enyo framework would be a serious problem for iOS.

      • shank15217
      • 7 years ago

      android is already a serious problem for iOS

      • moog
      • 7 years ago

      Doubt they’ll borrow anything from a failed mobile OS, Google like typical behemoth companies also has a lot of internal politics.

        • helix
        • 7 years ago

        Android’s modular “views” and the application “card” concept from WebOS seem like two sides of the same general idea. WebOS shell for application switching etc, on the android backend would make a lot of sense.

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