CES 2014: LG to unwrap webOS-powered smart TV

Michelle Clancy | 04-01-2014

Rumour has it that LG will show off smart TVs equipped with the webOS operating system that it partially bought from HP in February 2013.

Originally developed by Palm Pilot PDA pioneer Palm to help it enter the post-iPhone world, it and Palm itself were bought by HP to fuel its HP’s tablet dreams with the 2011 TouchPad launch. An utter commercial failure, webOS has been sitting on a shelf until LG came along looking for a new user interface that would be more personalised, for its smart TVs.

Accordingly, HP sold part of its webOS assets to LG and licensed the rest.

“It creates a new path for LG to offer an intuitive user experience and Internet services across a range of consumer electronics devices,” said Skott Ahn, president and CTO at LG, when the company made the acquisition. “The open and transparent webOS technology offers a compelling user experience that, when combined with our own technology, will pave the way for future innovations using the latest Web technologies.”

At CES, if the reports from the Wall Street Journal and others bear out, should see the first fruits of the Korean giant’s work with the operating system, which uses a visual motif called “cards,” which unlike the tiles familiar from iOS, Android and Windows 8, are arranged at the bottom of the screen to make apps navigable.