HP WebOS Evangelist Richard Kerris Leaving The Company

Richard Kerris, as big an advocate for HP’s WebOS as existed on the planet, has decided to leave the company, according to a report. His decision only raises further questions about the fate of the mobile operating system, currently in limbo under a new HP (NYSE: HPQ) administration.

Kerris’ departure was reported by WebOS Roundup, and confirmed by PreCentral. He was the public face of HP’s efforts to evangelize WebOS earlier this year prior to the launch then cancellation of the TouchPad, which as most mobile observers know by now is on the short list for most ridiculous mobile strategy of 2011.

As a result of that crazy August, HP’s mobile ambitions are stuck in the mud while a new executive team led by former eBay (NSDQ: EBAY) CEO Meg Whitman attempts to figure out what to do with the situation. It’s not hard to imagine why Kerris would no longer want to be the public face of such a doomed effort, although no official reason for his departure was provided.

Can HP really be having that hard a time finding a buyer for WebOS, if for no other reason because of its patent portfolio? It’s a tough way for a mobile operating system that critics actually liked to go out in this sort of fashion.