Open WebOS Beta Release
September 1, 2012

HP Releases Beta Version Of Open WebOS

April Flowers for - Your Universe Online

Late last year, computer giant Hewlett Packard (HP) promised to make webOS, its mobile operating system, an open source supported platform. On Friday, HP launched the beta release. The final version is expected to be released at the end of September.

HP's short-lived Touchpad tablet and Palm Pre devices ran on the webOS platform. The company has dropped any plans to build consumer products using webOS, but has continued to keep its promise to open the code up for other developers.

HP is handling the release rather quietly, however. They announced it in a blog post at Open webOS Project. The blog gives a glowing pat on the back to the developers, from the developers. What the site is missing, however, is any single mention of or branding for HP.

“It has taken a lot of hard work, long hours and weekend sacrifices by our engineering team to deliver on our promise and we have accomplished this goal,” the developers write.

The beta release includes two environments for developers. The first is a desktop build, reports Ingrid Lunden of TechCrunch, which the development team touts as "the ideal development environment for enhancing the webOS user experience with new features and integrating state of the art open source technologies. Developers can now use all their desktop tools on powerful development machines.”

Some of those new features include support for core apps such as Calendar and Contacts as well as third-party Enyo apps. Open webOS calls Enyo its “sister open source project.” Enyo is a cross-platform JavaScript framework for app development.

The second is called OpenEmbedded, and this build is also "the ideal development environment."  OpenEmbedded is supposedly ideal for porting webOS to new and existing devices. Equipped with an ARM emulator for running db8 and node.js services, HP cited that it included OpenEmbedded because of its "widespread community adoption" and cross-compiling support for embedded platforms, reports Rachel King for ZDNet.

The complete release, according to Chris Burns of SlashGear, consists of 54 webOS components and over 450,000 lines of code, usable under the Apache 2.0 license.

The source code for webOS is linked on the blog site and Github.

This beta release of webOS follows the Enyo 2.0 release in July.