You don't understand the roles of Apple vs HP. Apple is Henry Ford's Ford, a singular vision where you could get a Model T in any color you wanted, as long as it was black. HP is General Motors, where you could get any color you wanted from 7 or more brands ranging from low-end Chevrolet to high-end Cadillacs, not to mention GMC trucks and tractor-trailers. The press and financial analyst community views HP as a PC and printer company because that's all they ever put their hands on, but HP makes as much or more money off the infrastructure business that makes up enterprise computing, creating more private clouds than anyone else, for example. Enterprise computing is a total blind spot to most PC bloggers.
There's actually a mobility strategy that can be discerned hidden in all the noise, secrecy and speculation, based on a close reading of published press releases and other announcements and interviews.
Gram was likely spun off so that it can make deals with third parties for the fundamental smartphone patents that came with Palm, without the direct conflicts of interest of dealing with a HP as both a hardware competitor and a licensor who could turn on its customers at any time. And as a side project, Gram will be the prime sponsor of OpenWebOS and Enyo.
HP will make a commercial tablet based on Windows 8 that hopefully has all the enterprise security and managability features that have been in Windows forever, and that Apple has never been able to come close to. If Microsoft doesn't shoot itself in the foot, this will take over the void created by the demise of RIM, and squeeze Apple out of the my-company-pays-for-it iPhone and iPad markets. HP and all the Microsoft tablet OEMs are betting that enterprises are already setup with Windows apps that can port to tablets without the massive effort of recoding from C# and VB to Objective-C. They may not be cool, but the get the job done.
HP will also make a consumer tablet based on Windows 8's consumer editions, and if they're smart, will incorporate a BIOS that will boot Win8 securely but also allow competing OS's such as WebOS and even Android to be installed without the shennanigans that other vendors will make them go thru. HP could even license its own smartphone patents back from Gram (at a very nominal fee) and get back into the phone business, if the Win8 phone turns out to be anything more than the failure that the Win7 phone was.
But, knowing HP's history, they'll figure out some way to screw it up and lose money at every stage.