Palm Staying Out of the Mobile Patent War (So Far)

A big hat tip to webOS developer and Twitter user @acarback, but here’s an interesting chart showing the various mobile lawsuits currently underway, from The Guardian:


You’ll notice that Palm is conspicuously missing from this chart, and so either Palm’s presence is too small to induce anyone to sue Palm, or they’ve done a miraculous job of using technologies that keep them above the fray. Certainly, webOS is developed using open source whenever possible, and it’s certainly plausible that Palm’s just done this good a job. If so, then kudos to them, and I’m sure that HP appreciates their efforts. Of course, Palm’s own patent portfolio might also be a factor here.

It’ll be interesting to see if this holds true as webOS starts making more noise and increasing market share.

Update: Some folks on Twitter have wondered if Palm will sue Meego and BB over their use of something similar to webOS cards for multitasking. My position is that Palm may not have patents on this capability, and if they do, then they’d still have to decide whether it’s worth opening that can of worms. Sometimes, it’s best just to continue to innovate and offer the better implementation. Let me know, though, if you know of any specific patents covering cards or anything else.

Note that in general, if Palm (or, rather, HP, of course) wanted to get litigious, they likely could at any point. They certainly own enough patents. They haven’t so far, though, meaning that perhaps that’s a game that they’d rather not play. We’ll just have to wait and see whether HP intends to change that position.


  1. Panagiotis says:

    What concerns me in this lawsuit space is the lawsuit Oracle (Sun’s owner) filed against Google about infringing Java patents. I wonder if the outcome of this could have some impact on WebOS considering how much Java & JS are part of the system. Did Palm license Java or are they hoping to quible about licenses like Google is apparently trying to do.

    • I believe that Palm’s dropping Java in webOS 2.0. And, I’m pretty sure that Java and Javascript are unrelated.

  2. Panagiotis says:

    I don’t know the deatils of WebOs / Java / JS. That’s why I was wondering if this could affect us.

    • Understood. My understanding is that Palm’s been very careful to avoid the issues that Google is running into.


  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mark Darlington and johnj2803, AboutwebOS. AboutwebOS said: Looks like @Palm is staying out of the patent war (so far) #webOS @HP_PC [...]

Speak Your Mind