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Open webOS ported to Google's Nexus 7

updated 06:04 pm EST, Mon December 31, 2012

Open webOS port slow, incomplete, but works

A developer working over winter break from his college has managed to get Open webOS -- the descendant of the operating system that powered Palm and HP's ill-fated mobile devices -- to work on the Asus-produced Nexus 7 tablet from Google. The port is still in alpha stages, showing some lag and freezing while running on the Nexus 7, but the developer was able to get Wi-Fi and Internet browsing working on the device. Thanks to prior work done porting Open webOS to Samsung's Galaxy Nexus, the device even supports a "virtual gesture area," allowing it to retain the gesture-driven interface that was a signature of Palm's defunct operating system.

According to webOS Nation, the port was led by Simon "morphis" Busch from WebOS Ports. Bush worked using LibHybris, a resource created by Jolla engineer Carsten Munk. LibHybris is a library allowing for "bionic-based [Android] hardware adaptations in glibc systems," facilitating translation between resources written to run on Android and other Linux-based systems such as Open webOS.

Developers in the future will not have to write drivers from scratch in order to get webOS running on different Android devices. Observers note that the Nexus 7 might be a better fit for developers looking to port, though, due to the open source and open hardware nature of the device.

by MacNN Staff



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