Palm: I’ll be Back!

by Gaurav Kheterpal on June 21, 2010

Palm isn’t going to go down without a fight. HP, which acquired the struggling phone manufacturer for a whopping $1.2 billion, has aggressive plans to induce a fresh lease of life into Palm. The duo is set to hit the market with a range of exciting new devices and a new version of webOS in the next several months.

After HP scooped up Palm in a rather unprecedented move in May, many industry analysts predicted that we had seen the last of new devices from the company and that the webOS platform is history now. However, a recent announcement from the company suggests that it is about to hit back at its critics.

I’ll be back – with a series of new devices and an improved webOS!

According to a report from PreCentral, a Palm representative speaking on an AT&T sponsored webinar for webOS developers said

“I’m not allowed to talk about future roadmaps, especially because we’re in the process of being acquired by HP, so I can’t say. But yes we have a road map. We are working on future devices. And [a] new version of the OS. So I think, you’re going to find the next year very exciting.”

His statement suggests that Palm is intent on making a comeback of sorts in 2011. Are we going to see the rumored Palm Pre 2? Or perhaps a new touchscreen device from Palm? Palm is also planning to bring Flash to webOS devices earliest possible. Of course, the recent statement is a welcome change from the rather strange choice of words from HP CEO Mark Hurd who’d earlier said

“we didn’t buy Palm to be in the smartphone business, we bought it for the IP”

Hurd’s comments caused a furor amongst Palm loyalists and the company was later forced to clarify that he meant that HP hopes to “expand WebOS’s footprint beyond the smartphone market” into tablets, printers, and other “interconnected devices.”

With the new iPhone 4 and HTC Incredible taking the smartphone war to an altogether new level, I wonder if Palm has enough firepower in it’s repertoire to pose a challenge. Palm’s current offerings – Pre Plus and Pixi Plus have hit rock bottom prices and are being sold for free on contract in United States. It will be an uphill task for Palm to recapture its lost ground amidst stiff competition from Apple and Android. Will it succeed? Only time will tell.

And it’s not just new devices; Palm has an aggressive roadmap for improving the webOS platform as well. According to PreCentral, Palm is all set to roll out a new version (1.4.5) of its webOS platform in the next several weeks.

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Written by: Gaurav Kheterpal. www.digitcom.ca >. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com > by: RSS>, Twitter >, Identi.ca >, or Friendfeed >

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