We've just received word that HP has laid off more than 270 employees from its webOS division as it "no longer needs many of the engineering and other related positions that it required before." This follows just behind the departure of former webOS head Jon Rubinstein, a restructuring, and a previous round of layoffs in September. We have a full statement from the company below:
As webOS continues the transition from making mobile devices to open source software, it no longer needs many of the engineering and other related positions that it required before. This creates a smaller and more nimble team that is well-equipped to deliver an open source webOS and sustain HP’s commitment to the software over the long term.
HP is working to redeploy employees affected by these changes to other roles at the company.
This isn't exactly a surprise, as the company recently moved the software into an open source stage of development, and dedicated resources at HP are likely far less necessary. It also appears that many of the cuts were focused on hardware-related positions. This does cast a shadow over CEO Meg Whitman's statements that the Palo Alto-based PC-maker was still interested in producing webOS hardware — particularly tablets. That seems less and less realistic given this dramatic cut in workforce on the project, and waning interest in the also-ran platform.