webOS ready to move beyond TVs, says LG

The evolution of webOS under LG
Image: LG

LG just released an open-sourced version of webOS that’s freely available to anyone that wants to download and poke around the code. The release of webOS Open Source Edition is meant to act as a catalyst to drive further adoption of webOS beyond LG televisions, smart refrigerators, and the occasional never-to-be-released smartwatch. So, devices like webOS tablets and set-top boxes as pictured in the LG-supplied image above.

This is the second time an open-source version of webOS has been released, the first coming under the failed tenure of HP back in 2011. LG’s cross-town rival Samsung develops and uses the open-sourced Tizen operating system on a variety of devices including smartwatches, televisions, Blu-ray players, and robotic vacuums.

LG hinted at its broader ambitions with the Palm-developed OS when it acquired the rights from HP back in 2013. “When LG adopted webOS for our popular smart TV lineup in 2013, it did so with the knowledge that webOS had tremendous potential,” said LG Chief Technology Officer Dr. I.P. Park. “webOS has come a long way since then and is now a mature and stable platform ready to move beyond TVs.”

LG is working with the National IT Industry Promotion Agency (NIPA) to find suitable webOS business proposals, and will provide logistical and technical support to any viable candidates with commercialization as the end goal. ”As we move from an app-based environment to a web-based one, we believe the true potential of webOS has yet to be seen,” said Park.



Have a webOS LG TV. I will say, the interface and overall usability is pretty slick.

Yeah, I totally agree. For me it’s definitely the best looking and usable TV interface I’ve ever used.

This. It’s the best TV OS right now. The UI even makes AndroidTV look outdated and clumsy, and this is coming from someone who loves their ShieldTV dearly.
It’ll be interesting to see how webOS evolves to fit into other devices.

Until Samsung released the latest Tizen, it was by far the best Smart TV platform. The latest Samsung Tizen matches the performance and features of LG WebOS Platform.

I hope this WebOS Platform is taken seriously and they are able to do well with it.

Dear Sony: please take note of this. I’m actually considering buying an LG TV instead of the Sony I’d normally go for, just because your Android implementation on the XE90 is so awful.

You’d normally buy a Sony? I guess their rebranding has worked, but it’s also come with higher prices for the exact same hardware. Sony is most certainly not even one of the first 5 TV manufacturers I think of when buying a TV set.

I may be a bit off but some of their hardware/processing engine in the recent top-line sets have received pretty strong reviews…

Sony’s image is by far the most natural to my eyes; much more pleasing than Samsung or Panasonic. Better than most LGs as well, but the OLED is so much better than an LCD panel that makes up for it (obviously I’d love Sony’s OLED, but that’s just way too much money).

Also, my old Sony NX713 has served me so well over the years that I’m still really pleased with their work. They may not be the cheapest, but they give results I like a lot. I just really want that glass panelled LG.

That’s because you’re an idiot who buys TVs based on a brand. Last year’s Sony LCDs wiped the floor with the competition. The new F series seems to be following the same way this year. But yeah, better buy a Samsung rather than make an informed purchase.

Since i also experienced the bootloop feature with my Nexus 5x, i’m not so fan of LG anymore.

Different divisions though. Their tvs are great

Hi yeah I’ve had a G6 for a year….no such issue.

I hope to see Web Os and Tizen built out to be fully capable OSes, there has to be more to life than Android and Apple’s offerings.

True. The only problem is having apps for the OS’s. That’s what killed Sailfish, Windows Mobile, Firefox OS, Ubuntu Touch, and a host of other OS’s that wanted badly to compete…

It’s becoming less of a problem as most popular apps are publishing their (Progressive) Web Apps capable of running on any OS. That’s why webOS, Jolla (Sailfish), Microsoft Lumia and others are starting to make headlines again.

Microsoft Lumia isn’t an operating system.

Yep, didn’t meant it as if it is. But I’ve seen a headline recently that Microsoft is selling them again. My point was: lot of niche or once-dead OSes can rise (again).

Great point. I wonder how long it will take Web Apps to become a viable option for the common consumer?

WebOS yes. Tizen is hideous, so I wouldn’t want to see that.


That would be a literal nightmare. I went to CES and Samsung’s massive booth was literally just touting Bixby on every single one of their products. It was terrifying.

there has to be more to life than Android and Apple’s

There were more, and they died…the market has spoken. It’s a huge uphill battle to break in. I thought Windows Phone had some unique things going on and yet even that wasn’t enough.

Why not offer a TV Box, I would ditch my Nexus Player pos instantly if there was an LG WebOS box available.

I would love to see WebOS phones again.

Competition makes the world a better place.

For developers it isn’t because no one wants to make apps for an OS that has miniscule marketshare. That’s what killed Windows Phone and Blackberry.

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