Intel has also been bringing in ex-HP WebOS talent as the chipmaker looks to raise its profile in smartphones and tablets.
In November, Intel hired Larry Barras, who spent three years at HP and Palm as principal software architect for WebOS, as a software engineering manager in the Intel Ultra Mobility Group, according to his LinkedIn profile. Barras left HP in October, and it's unclear if he resigned or was part of the first round of WebOS layoffs that took place that month.
Margaret Burgraff, who spent two and a half years at HP and Palm as senior director of quality assurance for WebOS, joined Intel in November as senior director of worldwide quality, according to her LinkedIn profile. She previously spent more than 15 years at Apple in various quality assurance management roles.
Intel declined to comment on the hires.
Intel got a late start in mobility, but at CES earlier this month, it unveiled a "multi-year, multi-device" strategic partnership with Motorola Mobility that will combine Intel's newest Atom Z2460 processor, dubbed Medfield, with Motorola's Android-based devices.
Mobility startups are also taking advantage of the uncertainty surrounding WebOS. MobileIron, a mobile device management startup based in Mountain View, Calif., in December hired Renchi Raju, director of WebOS system user interface and platform userspace at HP, as a director of engineering.
Larry Leonardi, an HP regional solution specialist for WebOS, started with MobileIron earlier this month as channel enablement manager for the Northeast Region. A spokesperson for MobileIron confirmed both hires in an email to CRN.
Leonardi spent five years at Palm as national sales manager, managing the company's business-to-business channel, according to his LinkedIn profile.
Mobilisafe, a Seattle-based mobile security startup that's currently in stealth mode, in December hired Sajal Sahay, former vice president of carrier channel marketing for WebOS, as vice president of marketing.
The recent WebOS departures follow the high profile exits of Michael Rizkalla, senior director of WebOS Application Development at HP who left in November for a position as senior director of mobile applications at Xobni, a San Francisco based social media startup; and Richard Kerris, former vice president of WebOS worldwide developer relations, who left in November and joined Nokia as head of global developer relations.
Turnover in the IT business is a fact of life, so it may be too far a leap to view the recent WebOS departures are part of a mass exodus of mobile talent from HP. At the same time, there's no arguing that competition in this space is growing more intense by the day, and that holding onto mobile talent will continue to be a challenge -- for all vendors.