Palm to reclaim smartphone "birthright" with phones & "a great tablet" tips Rubinstein

Palm chief Jon Rubinstein has blamed a shortfall in resources for the company squandering its "birthright" to the smartphone market, an omission it seems has quickly been addressed since the acquisition by HP. Speaking at the Web 2.0 conference, Rubinstein said that "we've actually pulled a couple hundred people out of HP and made them part of Palm. We're using them to broaden our scope and we're just cranking away." As to what they're cranking away on, Rubinstein says to expect "some smartphones, a great tablet coming."

In the smartphone space according to Rubinstein, "Palm created the PDA (personal digital assistant) space with the Pilot and the smartphone space after it with the Treo, so by birthright, Palm should have owned the smartphone market, but it just lost its way." He went on to compare Palm to another well-known brand, claiming "it's a very similar story to what happened with Apple." The acquisition deal, meanwhile, was important to HP because it allowed the firm "to control their own furture and not rely on the kindness of strangers."

Theorizing is great, but of course we're all more interested in what products are in the pipeline. webOS, Rubinstein says, is the "unified experience" around which the new roadmap is based, addressing expectations of users having more and more devices that need to interoperate successfully. "I think we have several products that will be hits when they come out" he concluded.

[Image credit PreCentral]