When you're HP, you've got money to play around with. Sure, you're not making a much money as you used to, but there's still cash sitting around with which you can do things. You can spin the webOS Global Business Unit off into a new company that's still going to rely on you for [even more] money, and you can plunk down half a million dollars to become a Platinum member of the Linux Foundation.
That cool $500,000 was enough to lift HP out of their previous Gold level membership, lofting the Palo Alto company to the ranks of Fujitsu, IBM, Intel, NEC, Oracle, Qualcomm, and Samsung. Making this investment also gives HP a seat on the Linux Foundation Board of Directors, giving them a direct voice in how they want to see Linux evolve in all sorts of manners, especially with respect to HP's own businesses.
While Open webOS was not explicitly (or implicitly) mentioned in the press release announcing HP's ascension to Platinum membership within the Linux Foundation, we can't help but think that this could prove to be a good thing for our favorite mobile operating system. webOS has from its start been based on Linux, and the new Open webOS version makes use of the Linux Standard Kernel. While up to this point HP has taken and integrated Linux code into Open webOS, going forward they'll have the ability to influence how Linux evolves in ways that may be beneficial to Open webOS. Money buys influence, influence gets you what you want.
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