Hewlett-Packard's fire sale of their TouchPad tablet has taken a new turn because a few of them have been spotted running the Android OS instead of HP's webOS. HP has reportedly said it was an unauthorized move and that they have begun an internal investigation. HP's Director of Open-Source Program Office Phil Robb posted a message to a developer discussion group, saying We presently believe that some person or persons unknown may have facilitated the delivery of these Android-based units strictly against the policy and authorization of HP, PC World reported.
HP sold off their inventory of TouchPads in August for $99 and thousands of them were quickly bought up. Furthermore, HP has announced they are no longer using webOS or making tablet computers and so all of this has added to renewed interest in the devices and the declining webOS. Now come these reports of Android running on the TouchPad, and several worlds are colliding in an unlikely place. Android developers now have renewed hope they can more easily port over the OS to TouchPad in an attempt to get more life out of them, tech blog Daily Tech reported.
Additionally, Cnet reported that a Chinese developer has created a rudimentary app that allows Android to function (albeit in glitchy way) on the webOS platform. So it looks like there is interest from at least some developers to take advantage of all the TouchPads now being used, despite the fact HP will no longer make them.
Although there are a few dedicated webOS developers out there (the TouchPad app catalog just reached 1,000 apps, for example), HP has not found any buyers yet of the orphaned OS. Below is a YouTube video of the TouchPad running Google Android as an app.
Let us know in the comments if you are a webOS fan or if you are just wondering what all the fuss is about.