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Samsung will 'never' buy HP WebOS, CEO is reported saying

September 2, 2011 |  8:40 am

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Samsung said at the IFA electronics trade show that it will "never" purchase WebOS from Hewlett-Packard, according to reports.

"It's not right that acquiring an operating system is becoming a fashion," Samsung Chief Executive Choi Gee Sung told reporters at the IFA show in Berlin, according to Bloomberg.

When asked by reporters and analysts at the IFA show in Berlin on Thursday whether Samsung was going to buy HP's WebOS operating system, as has been speculated, the CEO responded with "never," Bloomberg said.

Samsung's phones and tablets mostly run on Google's Android operating system, though some do run on Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 software and the company also has devices running a mobile OS called Bada, which it owns and is developing.

HP acquired WebOS when it paid $1.2 billion in 2010 to take over the financially struggling Palm. Since then, HP has made a few smartphones and one tablet -- the HP TouchPad -- running on WebOS.

But none of the devices sold well enough and HP announced last month it would stop making hardware for WebOS itself and look to other companies to produce phones and tablets running the fledgling OS. HP then slashed the price on its HP TouchPad tablet, which debuted at a starting price of $499.99, down to $99.99, which led to online and in-store sellouts across retailers in the U.S. and Canada.

The world's largest PC company is now making one final run of the TouchPad to meet the sudden consumer demand. All of this only boosted the speculation that a company such as Samsung might be interested in WebOS, given its newfound popularity.

But it seems that if any hardware maker is interested in WebOS, it isn't Samsung.

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-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles

twitter.com/nateog

Photo: An HP TouchPad on display at a Best Buy store in East Palo Alto, Calif. Credit: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

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