I suspect this is the crux of HP’s strategy for the acquisition, and that it won’t keep the Palm webOS platform or Palm devices in the market long, if they don’t rapidly gain momentum. I also wouldn’t be surprised to learn that Palm, during its turbulent final decade as an autonomous company, signed extensive intellectual property cross-licensing agreements.
“The real value of Palm is that their intellectual property protects areas that are very high growth right now,” said Pete Conley, a managing partner at MDB Capital, a research firm that analyzes the value of intellectual property.
Mr. Conley said his firm valued Palm’s portfolio of patents at approximately $1.4 billion. In particular, he said, Palm has patents around one of the most-desirable areas for mobile operating systems — multitasking.