Comments on: Sony Launches the Clié in U.S.

In move that, frankly, caught many of us by surprise, Sony has announced that its Palm powered Clié handheld will be available much earlier in the U.S. than was expected. It can be ordered right now off the Sony Vaio Direct Web site for $399. It will be available in stores in September.

The downside is that only the monochrome version is being released now. Sony representative David Yang cited shortages of color displays for this. He said to not expect the color version to be released in the U.S. until the middle of next year.

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Sony Pre-Order Page Very Slow

Ed @ 8/30/2000 11:49:17 AM #
Not surprisingly, the Sony page to pre-order the Clie has been slammed today and is running quite slowly. If you aren't intending to actually pre-order a Clie today, do your fellow Palm users a favor and don't go there. There isn't anything that interesting anyway. Just a small picture of the Clie and the list of features and specifications that I cut and pasted onto the end of this article. If you want to learn more about the Clie, take a look at that Flash animation that I linked to in the article, instead.

Palm InfoCenter

$399? Yeesh.

I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 12:40:54 PM #
$399 seems a little steep when compared to $249 for the Visor Deluxe or Palm IIIxe. Is the Memory Stick slot really worth an extra $150? And this is the *monochrome* version. The color version is going to be priced in Pocket PC territory.

Good luck, Sony.

RE: $399? Yes.
Ed @ 8/30/2000 12:51:01 PM #
They are going up against the $399 Palm Vx not the much cheaper models. They both have the same amount of memory and the Clié is close to being as small as the Vx. Throw in the MemoryStick expansion slot and I'd take the Clié.

The point about the color version being more expensive is a good one. The IIIc is currently going to $399, too. Maybe that's why Sony held off; they knew the color version of the Clié would be too expensive to be competitive.

Palm InfoCenter

RE: $399? Yeesh.
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 5:02:20 PM #
Well... the memory stick is actually a step in the right direction, so far this seems to offer more memory possibilities then any other Palm vendor. Sony has plans to eventually realease a 128 meg and 256 meg stick that will also work on their Palms. It may seem like way too much for a PDA, but I know medical students that could use an extra 10, or 20 megs of rams just to hold all the files reference material they would like to carry on thir PDA's. Also, if you've been diggin deep into Sony plans, I think they're hoping that at some point their PDA's will play full motion video's... and I think even streaming video in the future from other wireless solutions. It is pricy, but it seems to be the only Palm vendor which has bigger future out looks then all the others. I guess now we'll just wait and see...

RE: $399? Are you kidding
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 8:55:36 PM #
You should not compare it to the IIIe or visor. The clie is the same size (acutally smaller) than the Vx PLUS it INCLUDES an additional 8MB of REMOVABLE memory. That is pretty sweet if you ask me.


I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 12:40:50 PM #

Yet another iron spike slammed into Microsofts coffin.

Most excellent.

RE: Excellent
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 6:25:38 PM #
I doubt it. Not with the color version not coming out until next year. In case you have been living in a cave and haven't noticed alot of formerly die hard Palm users are buying and using IPaqs because they are tired of waiting for Palm to actually improve something on their devices. $399 for this is a joke.

RE: iPAQ for me!
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/1/2000 2:05:46 PM #
Count me in. I've used just about every Palm made (since the III), and just got my iPAQ...this thing is f@#*ing incredible! I never realized how outmoded the PalmOS has gotten until I started using the iPAQ. I'm not saying Palm's are crap, they're ok, but they are really falling behind. There is nothing innovative about the current line-up. Even the Sony is a big yawn. $400 for a Palm V competitor? Thanks, but no thanks.

Give me high res color (160x160 pixels on a Palm is an absolute joke), MP3 music, and ebooks any day. As for Palm introducing more advanced handhelds....even if they do, that is over a year away. I'm not going to sit around waiting for Palm to get their shit together. Thats not my problem, it's Palm's.

Brand loyalty only goes so far with me. If you build a great product, you've got my business. But if you sit on your ass for over 5 years and do nothing to innovate or improve your product offering...then it's adios.

I for one...

EGarrido @ 8/30/2000 1:16:22 PM #
am going to wait until OS 4.0 and those new ARM processors come out. I'm still using the old Palm V (yes, only 2 MB, Pete!). They look promising, and it shouldn't be *too* long... right?

RE: I for one...
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 1:26:47 PM #
I have to agree. I was expecting(hoping for) more from Sony. Other than the memory stick, what makes this any better than the Palm V I bought almost 2 years(!) ago? Very strange--the Palm technology just hasn't been very interesting in the last year or so.

Don't get me wrong--I still think my Palm V is incredibly elegant for what it does. But, at this rate, MP3 players are going to pass up the Palms technology-wise :( If Sony priced this at $250ish, I'd say this was worth looking at. $400? No thanks. Maybe if it had color. I think the mem stick is cool, but... not cool enuff to warrant $400. Palm programs just don't require that much memory, and it doesn't play MP3s, and you're not gonna watch any movies on it. So--why have the mem stick? It isn't a cheap medium, so you're not gonna buy software on it. It just seems like they threw on a storage solution without a problem(!). Gimme an MP3 player and my Palm V for the same price...

Re: Update

EGarrido @ 8/30/2000 4:03:59 PM #
I just went to the Sony site (4:00PM Eastern) and I was able to order. I got all the way up to the prompt for a credit card and stopped because I don't have an interest in actually buying the thing.

EGarrido @ 8/30/2000 4:08:59 PM #
I just went back to the site to see if I could still do it (a few minutes later) and I can't! There's no button on the bottom of the page anymore!! They're trying to get me, I know it :-P

RE: Re: Update
Ed @ 8/30/2000 4:10:48 PM #
I believe you. I went to check after I read your comment and it was there but now it is gone again. Sounds like they are having big problems.

Palm InfoCenter
And it's back
EGarrido @ 8/30/2000 4:11:55 PM #
After clicking on the link to the SONY ordering page above, I clicked "Handhelds" in the left side of the page. And from there, I could order it again, but it's listed as back ordered. Now I know they're out to get me. Muahhaaaahaaahaa

RE: Re: Update
EGarrido @ 8/30/2000 4:14:18 PM #
Sorry Ed. I was commenting and I didn't refresh soon enough to see your comment. I'm going to stop posting comments now. Later.

RE: Re: Update
Ed @ 8/30/2000 7:59:49 PM #
I've checked several times over the past 4 hours and all I can say is Sony is having some real problems with their Web site today. Sometimes the link to order the Clié is there and sometimes it isn't. If you want one, keep trying the page and you'll eventually be able to.

Palm InfoCenter

broken promises...

I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 4:17:36 PM #
Has Sony ever offered an explanation of how the original promise of a ~$200 color, wireless networked handheld turned into THIS? I'm personally surprised they haven't taken more flak on this.

RE: broken promises...
Ed @ 8/31/2000 12:14:57 PM #
I don't think these promises were ever made by Sony. They came from this CNET article:
and never cited anyone but "sources" for the prediction that Sony's PDA would be a "sub-$200 PDA with color display, limited wireless Internet access, multimedia capabilities and add-on storage capabilities through its Memory Stick technology".

I don't think we should hold a grudge against Sony for this.

Palm InfoCenter

good deal - much better than a vx

I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 4:28:35 PM #
This is better than a vx -- 8mb internal, but includes an 8 mb memory stick, travel adapter, ACROBAT READER, enhanced address book. Plus, the jog dial is great feature - perfect for palm browsing while on the phone or driving!

RE: good deal - much better than a vx
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 5:00:37 PM #
I totally agree..

RE: good deal - much better than a vx
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 5:31:45 PM #
Great! Now we'll have people talking on their cell phone with one hand, browsing on their Sony PDA with the other, and driving with their knees! :)

But it does seem cool. I wonder how well the dial actually works.

RE: Acrobat Reader
Ed @ 8/30/2000 7:52:14 PM #
I got the listing of specifications off the Sony site but I don't think it was very well organized by them. I think they are saying that Acrobat Reader is for the PC. It is in the list with some of other things that could only be on the PC, like "Palm Desktop for Sony" and "User Registration for PC" but I'm not sure so I didn't want to mess with it.

The best arguement I can make for this theory is that if it had an Acrobat Reader for the Palm, Adobe would have said something about it yesterday when they made a big hoopla about the AportisDoc PDF Converter.

Palm InfoCenter

Big Clie disadvantage!

I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 5:02:12 PM #
The Visor supports the Mac OS. The Palm supports the Mac OS. The Clie doesn't. Oops! Bad move, Sony...

RE: Big Clie disadvantage!
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 5:09:55 PM #
Maybe this says something about the MAC OS being used with business professionals?

(I don't know, it's just a thought)

RE: Big Clie disadvantage!
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/30/2000 6:57:37 PM #
The Visor supports the Mac OS. The Palm supports the Mac OS. The Clie doesn't. Oops! Bad move, Sony...

Maybe this says something about the MAC OS being used with business professionals?

(I don't know, it's just a thought)

Since when have Palm devices and their spinoffs only been for business professionals?

RE: Big Clie disadvantage!
Ed @ 9/1/2000 10:22:21 AM #
Don't feel too left out, it also doesn't support Unix, Linux, NT, or even Win95.

Want to complain? Here's the Sony feedback page:

Palm InfoCenter

Why whine about cost?

Andy @ 8/30/2000 7:48:24 PM #
I don't understand why everyone's whining about the $399 cost - that's exactly the same as the Palm Vx, which this is comparable to. It's 8mb, same as the Vx, so OF COURSE it's more expensive than a V. Considering that it adds the mem. stick, I'd say it's a pretty great deal if you need the memory.

Look & Feel

I.M. Anonymous @ 8/31/2000 12:45:16 PM #
If you run the animated Sony demo of the Clie on the Sony site you get to see page where you can spin the Clie around to see it from every direction. I was pleased to see one thing about the design but sad to see another.

First off, in many of the pictures I've seen up until now the MemoryStick has been stuck out of the top at least an inch. I was beginning to wonder if that was a far in the MS could go and using a case with the MS in would be impossible. But here I see it inserted all the way in. In fact, it fits so flush I'm not sure how you go about taking it out.

The design element I'm not happy with is, if you look at the bottom of the Clie, the HotSync contacts are clearly exposed. I think this looks cheap. Would a little door like the one on the III really cost so much? Especially for $400.

Also, have any of you used any Sony stuff with a JogDial on it? I've heard it is easy to use it to move down but hard to get it to move back up.

Palm InfoCenter

RE: Look & Feel
Brett @ 8/31/2000 1:55:21 PM #
It’s your opinion but, you must also think the PalmV looks *cheap* because it has the same exposed contacts on the bottom. And it is not a matter of cost. The smaller V and Clie are packed so tight, there is no room for a little retractable door.

Smaller palm or retractable door… hmm… I’ll take the smaller palm please.

RE: Look & Feel
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/1/2000 2:46:17 PM #
Hmmm... me, I,, am not registered at this site?! Ryan! What's up with that? Anyway, the memstick has a SPRING in the slot. Push down on it and it pops up. Hence that protruding one inch we've seen. The spring held it up. mc

RE: Look & Feel
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/1/2000 10:45:37 PM #
The memory stick you seem that out the device one inch is only a demo to let you know where the MS be inserted.. Actually, the MS is fully inserted and eject by a smaller button...

RE: Look & Feel
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2000 3:08:42 AM #
I just got one from Fry's and my biggest complaint is that for $400, the thing is all plastic. The silver you see in the pictures is NOT aluminum like the V. It makes it feel kinda cheap, although not as cheap and flimsy as the Visor. For $400, I would have liked to see a sturdier construction.

RichReader will do this.

Larry @ 8/31/2000 4:19:49 PM #
RichReader will convert PDF files and MS Word too. All with rich text. Download at

Clie available at Fry's

Bakedon @ 8/31/2000 8:11:01 PM #
Just picked one up at Frys in Phoenix, Az for $399. Here is a quick review:

-same size as V but slightly thicker and narrower.
-Palm OS 3.5.1
-USB sync is fast!!
-No contrast button. Contrast is now called from the silkboard.
-Power button on the upper right/top works much better than V series.
-Backlight is the old style black on light.
-You get 8mb on board of course, but you also get an 8mb memory stick. The 16mb Palm has arrived (out of the box). You can store ALL your apps when not needed, then bring em in when you want them.
-Jog dial only works with default applications. Forget Datebk+, ToDo+, etc. It is very nice though.
-The power cord that connects to the dock also can connect directly to the unit for travel charging.
-Extra apps include Picure viewing and Movie playing software. Also an app to move thing to and from the MemStick.

Thats it as far as I can tell. A nice alternative to a Vx.

RE: Clie available at Fry's
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/2/2000 3:25:13 PM #
What kind of case does the Clie come with? Is the quality of the screen the same as the Vx? I ordered from the web page and got a back order, didnt think it would be available retail this soon...

RE: Clie available at Fry's
Bakedon @ 9/3/2000 3:26:33 AM #
Case is a nice flip case style. Uses no vecro, just grips tightly. I suspected the screen was not as good as the V because it uses normal backlighting. Not so. It is just as clear. Its nice to have the old style backlighting again. Its actually useful.

RE: Clie available at Fry's
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/4/2000 3:03:00 AM #
Does your Clie show "OQ" instead of "OK" when you delete the movies from the handheld. I transfered the movies from the memory stick to the handheld and when I went to delete it, instead of "OK and Cancel" options, I got "OQ and Cancel" options. Check it out and please let me know by posting it here.


[ No Subject ]

I.M. Anonymous @ 9/3/2000 11:37:50 AM #
The jog dial on Sony's pagers worked great so it would be a welcome addition on PDA. I would prefer the Clié over the Palm. Only wished it had a better display instead of a monochrome 160 x 160.


Houston @ 9/4/2000 5:19:40 AM #
Hi people!
i was just looking thru the CLIE specs and realized that there is absolutely no mention of the very important IR port for beaming!
I.M. Anonymous @ 9/5/2000 5:34:35 PM #
If you read the'd have seen it.. 12th bolded statement down

GPS for SONY Clie

I.M. Anonymous @ 11/18/2000 6:58:45 PM #
Is there any info on a GPS module for the CLIE?

Please reply to

CLIE's memory stick

I.M. Anonymous @ 11/25/2000 9:08:04 AM #
You can now run the applications stored on the stick directly. No transfer to the RAM. You will need the patch MSautorun1.exe though (downloadable at the SONY support site).

RE: CLIE's memory stick
I.M. Anonymous @ 11/27/2000 2:40:13 PM #
This would be fantastic, but I can't find it on the SONY support site. Could you give me some details how to find it?



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