Rubinstein: Palm Brand May Not Be Carried Over

In all of the coverage of Jon Rubinstein’s talk at D:Dive Into Mobile conference, this bit seemed to have been lost. Or at least, I don’t remember seeing it covered (and I’ve been a bit busy and out of touch lately):

Still, for all that work, Palm wasn’t going to be able to produce a mass-market hit on its own, Rubenstein said. That’s partly because Palm reentered a fast-moving market a little too late and partly because its competitors include some of the biggest technology companies on the planet.

Enter HP. Rubenstein resisted All Things D’s Kara Swisher’s repeated questions about the identity of Palm suitors but said "six companies were very interested in Palm." HP won the competition because "it made the most sense" to join up with HP, both because of its size and because it needed a mobile strategy badly, he said.

HP plans to bring out several products next year based on WebOS, including phones and tablets, Rubenstein said. Interestingly, he suggested that the Palm brand may not get carried over to the new products. (Emphasis added.)

"HP needs to build a brand around what it’s going to do going forward," Rubenstein said. He seemed personally ambivalent about the decision, seeing good things and bad things in the Palm brand.

Note that bit  (in bold) about the Palm brand not getting carried over to the new products. Am I the only one who finds this a bit surprising?


  1. I want to know what his actual words were that “suggested” such a thing, because I don’t actually see it there unless you read into things A LOT.

  2. Youre’ right, this is major news. I’m not sure why it wasn’t reported earlier so thanks for calling attention to it. As much as I’d hate to see the Palm name diminished, I want webOS to be successful more because I want to still be using it in a few years. If ditching the Palm name on some or all products is what that requires, then so be it.

  3. Osiris_c3 says:

    Here is the transcript.

    3:12PM Kara: Okay, so when is your phone coming out? Is the Palm name going to continue?

    Jon: What do you think?

    Kara: No, kill it.

    Jon: Okay you heard it here first. You know honestly I have no allegiance to it. It has some good connotations, it has some bad.

    Doesn’t sound like he said it may not be carried over to me. here is the source link.

    • Mark Coppock says:

      Osiris_c3: Thanks for that, hadn’t seen it. Yes, that’s definitely very different than presented in the story I linked to.


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