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Comments on: Palm Licenses Palm OS Garnet Source Code

Palm OSACCESS has announced it has entered into a non-exclusive agreement with Palm, Inc., that gives Palm a perpetual license for the Palm OS Garnet source code. ACCESS and Palm have also agreed to an expansion of the two companies’ existing patent license. Palm will pay ACCESS a total of $44 million (USD).

Under terms of the agreement, ACCESS has granted Palm specific rights to modify the code base of Palm OS Garnet for use in its devices such as the Palm Treo smartphone family and the company’s other handheld computers. The agreement also grants Palm the right to use Palm OS Garnet in whole, or in part, in any product from Palm and together with any other system technologies.

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Maybe...

dkirker @ 12/6/2006 9:19:49 PM # Q
Maybe Palm will now fix the "bug" in the Network Library that is keeping WiFi from working on the Treos. Probably not.

Cobalt?
drbuzz0 @ 12/7/2006 1:03:42 AM # Q
Remind me? What happened to cobalt?

It went from "cobalt is almost ready" to "Cobalt is ready. Look at it running on this sample device" to "Okay...who wants to license Cobalt? Anybody? Anybody?" to "the concerns about Cobalt compatability and features have been resolved" to "Okay...lets talk about ALP...or Garnet.... oh Cobalt? Um...nevermind that one"

Stephen M Packard, Jr.

RE: Maybe...
rsc1000 @ 12/7/2006 1:11:45 AM # Q
>>Remind me? What happened to cobalt?

Oh dude - you SOOO have not been around here lately, no? Even asking that question is fighting words to some. I suggest you check the PIC archives to read the sad and sordid tale.

RE: Maybe...
PenguinPowered @ 12/7/2006 2:08:24 AM # Q
PSRC postponed work on Cobalt to work on PalmOS for Linux. Meanwhile GSPDA announced they were going to ship a Cobalt phone, by the end of 2005. Instead, they shipped the same phone six months later running Savaje, which is amusing because Savaje is now out of business.

Then PSRC got bought by ACCESS, and PalmOS for Linux morphed into Access Linux Platform, whith a heavy emphasis on Access and PalmOS represented by a 68k emulator.

Speaking of which, where is ALP, anyway? '06 gonna be over soon

In other news, Marvell bought the XScale processor family from Intel, but have made it clear by annoucning Monahans that they plan to keep it on the market. Don't be surprised if PalmOS Garnet, er, I mean PalmCE, shows up on a Monahans based phone one day. (Don't be surprised if it doesn't either.)



May You Live in Interesting Times

ALP running late
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 1:47:05 PM # Q
penguinpowered wrote:

Speaking of which, where is ALP, anyway? '06 gonna be over soon

ACCESS quietly slipped this into the middle of the FAQ they just published:

We will announce the official name of the ACCESS Linux Platform when we announce that it is available to our licensees and developers—expected sometime in the first half of 2007.

http://www.access-company.com/developers/press/palm_faq.html

So, yep. They're behind schedule. Like about 90% of all big software projects... sigh. Oh well, just gives Mr. Moore some time for his Law to catch up with the demands of Linux on a high-function smartphone. From a review I read yesterday it sounds like Trolltech's Greenphone is going to need some help from him, too. As does the Nokia 770.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

Reply to this comment

**CRASH!!**

hkklife @ 12/6/2006 9:19:38 PM # Q
**CRASH!!**

(that was the sound of me, my 700p, and my stockpile of old Palm PDAs going out of my upstairs window!) Now this is a surprise!

So much for the slow news week I was just getting ready to mention to Ryan!

This throws a MAJOR twist into things! I'd love to know if, behind the scenes, any Cobalt "bits" ( the BT stack, the EVDO stack etc) were thrown in as well.



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

Is this good news?
freakout @ 12/6/2006 9:57:20 PM # Q
What exactly does it mean? That the 680 won't be the last Garnet Treo? That Palm are going to try and do a new PalmOS 6 (not Cobalt?) Is it a sign of desperation, or a sign of confidence?

Tim
I apologise for any and all emoticons that appear in my posts. You may shoot them on sight.
Treo 270 ---> Treo 650
RE: Is this good news?
cervezas @ 12/6/2006 10:16:51 PM # Q
Yes, grasshopper, it's good news. Notice the stipulation that Palm gets "the right to use Palm OS Garnet in whole, or in part, in any product from Palm and together with any other system technologies."

This means Palm can proceed with developing their own next-generation Palm OS with backward compatibility to Garnet. The Garnet APIs are becoming an execution environment (like Java or Brew) that will run the same apps on two (or, who knows, maybe more) operating systems. I say "maybe more" because Palm may want to include Palm OS as one application environment inside, say, the Linux platform that powers their "Third Business" devices.

This will be good news for ACCESS, too. Even though ALP's native framework is clearly where they want developers to be going, the continuation of Garnet inside Palm will help ALP get some traction among current Palm OS users.

Whether Palm decides to release more products that are just Palm OS Garnet--not Garnet as part of an advanced OS--now that's a question. They may very well squeeze out a few more Garnet products, now that they seem to have ironed out so many kinks for the Treo 680.

Understand that the transition to Linux isn't going to be all a bed of roses, people. It may be hard for people on PIC to hear this, but a lot of folks will miss Palm OS Garnet if Palm and/or ACCESS don't knock this mobile Linux thing out of the ballpark. (Better than Nokia has managed to do, for example.) It's a big challenge getting good performance, battery life, etc. out of an operating system as sophisticated as Linux (maybe more so than Palm OS Cobalt). Palm may have good reason to keep improving Garnet for a little while before Moore's Law and developers get mobile Linux to the point where Palm is satisfied that using it as the basis for a next-gen Palm OS is a totally winning proposition.

What I'm really interested in hearing now is what Palm has to say about this purchase! With this negotiation complete, Palm may be at a point where they can reveal more of their plans, now.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: **CRASH!!**
surfmaniac @ 12/6/2006 11:27:00 PM # Q
Excellent insights, Cervezas. Please keep them coming for us waterlogged troglodytes who need things said/stated in laymen's terms. And while I've got you, any ideas/hints as to the oft-rumored (and apparently real) '3rd' business?

thanks

Another dumb American who thinks Palm has a bright future...



Third Business rumors
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 12:05:32 AM # Q
Yeah, I posted some fresh rumors and thoughts about Palm's "Third Business" on my blog today: http://www.pikesoft.com/blog/index.php?itemid=128

Enjoy! :-)

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: **CRASH!!**
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 8:36:11 AM # Q
> ...What I'm really interested in hearing now is what Palm
> has to say about this purchase! With this negotiation
> complete, Palm may be at a point where they can reveal
> more of their plans, now...

I imagine at some point, probably already, they will have locked in cement just exactly what The Next Great Thing is (*). Since there is little "competition finding out" reason to hide what it is and lots of "PALM better do SOEMTHING soon!' reasons for revealing it, maybe indeed we'll find out soon!

=======

(*) For no particularly good reason I think the departure of Hawkins as CTO back in February marked that "locked in cement" point, maybe even WITHOUT Hawkins' approval.

But that REALLY is the purest of baseless conjecture.

RE: **CRASH!!**
medevilenemy @ 12/7/2006 1:06:54 PM # Q
My guess is that this means that palm's development of the widely rumored "Palm OS II" has reached a point where they are writing in legacy support. Which means that if palm really is working on such a project, development should be all but complete in a matter of a couple/few months. My prediction: Official news or something of equal weight regarding this by sometime in april/may.

RE: **CRASH!!**
freakout @ 12/7/2006 6:19:30 PM # Q
Yes, grasshopper, it's good news.

Cheers, Sensei Beers. ;)

RE: **CRASH!!**
AdamaDBrown @ 12/8/2006 3:21:50 PM # Q
This will be good news for ACCESS, too. Even though ALP's native framework is clearly where they want developers to be going, the continuation of Garnet inside Palm will help ALP get some traction among current Palm OS users.

How do you figure that? I would think that the continuation of Garnet would pull Palm users and developers away from ALP, since it's clear that the lines will be diverging, and that Palm's developments would hold more relevance.

Reply to this comment

Access FINALLY blinked! The Windows Mobile bluff worked!

The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/6/2006 9:36:08 PM # Q
Of course, the PalmOS IP is pretty much otherwise worthless to Access and since they know Palm would NEVER license ALPOS giving up the PalmOS 5 source code for 1/7 the cost Access had paid for PalmSource only makes good business sense. Especially seeing how poorly Access' ALPOS project is supposedly doing these days. Can you say 2008? Can you say NEVER?


Unfortunately, Palm lacks the brain power needed to actually FIX PalmOS 5, but that's a whole other matter. I'll go on record for formally stating that Palm not dumping PalmOS and fully embracing Windows Mobile the minute they lost the PalmSource bidding war would be a huge error. The only part of PalmOS 5 a smart Palm will keep is hacking a PACE clone as a PalmOS emulator for Windows Mobile. Bets, anyone?

Bwahahahahah!!!

TVoR

RE: Access FINALLY blinked! The Windows Mobile bluff worked!
twizza @ 12/7/2006 12:06:46 PM # Q
Interesting note TVOR;
Outside of patching/fixing the network stack for 3G on GSM networks and a proper LifeDrive 2 there would be no reason to fix the PalmOS.

As for your bet, I don't think its WM, but a "better" PalmOS emulator on another OS would not be a half bad thing to see coming. Mainly for the PIM apps. Everything else could possibly be done under another OS much better.

Things will be interesting by fall of next year that's for sure.

mobileministrymagazine.com
antoinerjwright.com

Reply to this comment

No Sunset?

Gekko @ 12/6/2006 10:04:38 PM # Q

No Sunset?

I feel like we're missing part of the story here.

Ryan - Source?

RE: No Sunset?
Ryan @ 12/6/2006 11:16:52 PM # Q
ACCESS/PalmSource was the first to put out a press release:

http://www.access-company.com/news/press/Current/120606_palm.html

I have not heard anything from Palm Inc on this news yet.

Reply to this comment

Fierce Competiton Ahead

jfme @ 12/6/2006 10:08:23 PM # Q
RE: Fierce Competiton Ahead
legodude522 @ 12/6/2006 10:53:05 PM # Q
Just so others know, that was a concept picture from rumor sites. Not something that leaked from Apple. It's just speculation on what the iPhone will look like.

Palm m125 > Palm Zire 71 > Tapwave Zodiac 1 > Palm Zire 72 > Sharp Zaurus SL-C1000 + 4gb MicroDrive + Palm Tungsten T|3 (1100mah)
My T|3 is too [i]sexy[/i] for me.
White chocolate
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/6/2006 11:00:01 PM # Q
Not the real iPhone, but close to the White Chocolate concept it obviously will imitate.
RE: Fierce Competiton Ahead
jfme @ 12/6/2006 11:04:21 PM # Q
We'll see if it really comes out on January. In any case, it does not look quite like a smartphone yet.

RE: Fierce Competiton Ahead
PenguinPowered @ 12/7/2006 2:21:15 AM # Q
iPhone's not supposed to be a smartphone. it's just a phone + media player.

iPhonde, really



May You Live in Interesting Times

Savage battle to the death
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/7/2006 2:34:14 AM # Q
iPhonde, really

Jobs Walks the Walk, it Talks the Talk.

LG Chocolate + iPod Nano = iPhone


Much as iPods proved design and marketing trumph performance, iPhone sales will be show it's not wrong to underestimate the intelligence of your target audience. Svengali Steve Jobs did it again.

TVoR

RE: Fierce Competiton Ahead
jfme @ 12/7/2006 8:55:31 AM # Q
Rumors say it will come out for all carriers and WILL have wi-fi. In fact, the sync will be done through it.

Meanwhile, the only place treo users will see wi-fi is in our dreams

RE: Fierce Competiton Ahead
freakout @ 12/7/2006 6:58:41 PM # Q
Apple are way too proud and independent to put up with the Evil American Telcos' BS. Why would they suddenly allow Apple to put out a wifi device when they've been stonewalling the technology for years?

Nah. Makes no sense. My bet? Apple will sell it via their current iPod retail network, and skip the carriers altogether. Choose your own SIM.

Tim
I apologise for any and all emoticons that appear in my posts. You may shoot them on sight.
Treo 270 ---> Treo 650

RE: Fierce Competiton Ahead
iphonde @ 2/5/2007 11:18:42 PM # Q
Did someone say Iphonde?

http://www.iphonde.com

Not an Iphone but an Iphonde

Reply to this comment

cool !

retrospooty @ 12/6/2006 10:24:50 PM # Q
I personally like garnet. It does everything I need it to do, and does it fast. I could see PAlm tweaking a few things here and there and keeping it going for several years releasing both Garnet and Winmob devices. Winmobile is OK to me, but the sync software is unacceptable.

Come Spring there will be a CDMA Treo released for Sprint and Verizon on garnet. It will have EVDO and internal antenna. That will do it for me.

RE: cool !
hkklife @ 12/6/2006 10:29:52 PM # Q
You have an inside source or is this just speculation on your part?

I halfway expect the 700p to be put out to pasture any day now and a sleeker version with most of the glaring bugs fixed, the new phone app from the 680 and the 680/750 formfactor released for Sprint/Verizon.



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

RE: cool !
jfme @ 12/6/2006 10:35:02 PM # Q
Well, I've been hearing about the iphone for a long time...I think the idea of it has always been dismissed by everyone... But today I found something real interesting:

http://revision3.com/diggnation/2006-11-30

and

http://www.myiphone.com/apple-iphone-patent-3068.php


RE: cool !
jfme @ 12/6/2006 10:40:30 PM # Q
wow...wrong thread. Sorry

Reply to this comment

ALP

legodude522 @ 12/6/2006 10:49:38 PM # Q
Goodbye ALP. Hello Palm OS 2?

Palm m125 > Palm Zire 71 > Tapwave Zodiac 1 > Palm Zire 72 > Sharp Zaurus SL-C1000 + 4gb MicroDrive + Palm Tungsten T|3 (1100mah)
My T|3 is too [i]sexy[/i] for me.
RE: ALP
2xs @ 12/7/2006 3:05:00 AM # Q
that´s it :D Happy ending, I would say...

Palm Professional -> Palm III -> Palm Vx -> Palm m505 -> Palm TT2 -> Palm TT3 -> Palm TX
Reply to this comment

The family Palm is almost reunited.

VampireLestat @ 12/7/2006 2:37:31 AM # Q
Very happy.

Although the FAQ at http://www.access-company.com/developers/press/palm_faq.html
is detailed, the future of who develops what, who owns what and how the branding will be applied are all still a little unclear.

BUT, it is all slowly getting clearer and at the end of the day, the only thing that counts is that the venerable Palm OS will go on!

_________________________________
Palm TX, world's best designed handheld.


Windows Mobile + PACE = Palm's future (The NEW PalmOS!)
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/7/2006 3:01:12 AM # Q
As stated, "The agreement also grants Palm the right to use Palm OS Garnet in whole or in part in any product from Palm and together with any other system technologies."


More specifically:

"Q. Does this mean Palm, Inc., can use Palm OS Garnet on a Windows Mobile-based device from Palm, Inc.?

A. Yes. However, it should be noted that Palm will only be able to use the Palm OS trademark for products that meet the compatibility requirements, verified through the compatibility test harness used by ACCESS and Palm."

Later, again Access states: "The agreement also grants Palm the right to integrate Palm OS Garnet on top of other operating systems."

"Q. Does this agreement include a license to future operating system products from ACCESS (formerly PalmSource) or updates to Palm OS Garnet?

A. No. This new license agreement is only for Palm OS Garnet as it exists today as previously delivered to Palm. For example, this new license agreement does not include a license to future ACCESS products such as the ACCESS Linux Platform, which would need to be licensed separately. The new agreement also does not include any updates or upgrades from ACCESS to the existing Palm OS Garnet code base."

"Q. What will ACCESS name its version of Palm OS Garnet?

A. We will be re-naming all our products with Palm-based names. As you may remember, we sold our rights in the Palm Trademark Holding Company last May (2005). As part of that deal, we agreed to change our then name—PalmSource--as well as all our Palm-based product and program names."

So Palm can call Windows Mobile "PalmOS" if it wants to. (To confuse things some more, Access says "Under terms of the agreement, we have given Palm the right to use either “Palm OS by ACCESS” or the product's new name (still to be announced) when referring to the operating system licensed with this new agreement.") Hilarious.

"Although we are transitioning away from the use of those marks, for the time being ACCESS continues to be the exclusive licensee of the mark Palm OS and our customers (including Palm) are permitted to use those marks only under a sublicense from ACCESS. In addition to the new licensing agreement, ACCESS has negotiated the perpetual right to identify any of our software products that pass the compatibility tests as “compatible with Palm OS” or “Palm OS compatible.”"

Insane.

"We will announce the official name of the ACCESS Linux Platform when we announce that it is available to our licensees and developers—expected sometime in the first half of 2007."

And again: "Q. If Palm Inc., develops a new version of the operating system, can they name it Palm OS?

A. It would not be appropriate for ACCESS to speculate about Palm's business or any possible future product offerings."

WHAT'S IN A NAME?

"Q. Will there continue to be two developer programs for Palm OS--one program from ACCESS and one program from Palm?

A. The two companies will each continue to have their own developer programs. ACCESS intends to continue working closely with Palm to ensure forward compatibility with future devices available from Palm and other ACCESS licensees."


Suuuuuuuuuuuuuure. ALPOS will as ready "sometime in the first half of 2007" as Cobalt was in December 2003...


Any bets how long before Access dumps PalmOS 5 development/support completely? Probably less than 12 months...

TVoR

RE: The family Palm is almost reunited.
ChiA @ 12/7/2006 5:00:30 PM # Q
TVoR asked
Any bets how long before Access dumps PalmOS 5 development/support completely?

ACCESS has already dropped further development of Garnet - read between the lines in the evasive answer given to the question below:

Q. Will ACCESS modify its version of Palm OS Garnet?

A. We will continue to support our licensees and developers. We will provide professional services as needed. The functionality provided by the current version of Palm OS Garnet will be included in the ACCESS Linux Platform, our next generation operating system for smart mobile devices and phones. The ACCESS Linux Platform will include the Palm OS Garnet code in its entirety; thus providing a very high level of compatibility.


RE: The family Palm is almost reunited.
freakout @ 12/7/2006 5:55:46 PM # Q
Who really cares whether ACCESS continues to develop Garnet anymore? The extra functionality bolted onto the Treo is all Palm/Handspring's own work anyway...
Reply to this comment

Wonder if I care?

theog @ 12/7/2006 5:26:17 AM # Q
I wonder if I really care or not... I don't know.

Vote for John Kerry... best man for the job.
RE: Wonder if I care?
VampireLestat @ 12/7/2006 6:00:31 AM # Q
I care because the TX is an amazing device and Palm OS keeps me organized.

I have so many things to do in my life that I simply don't have time to waste learning stuff, or fumbling with Windows Mobile, constantly trying to find optimal ways of working around quirks and quarks.

- Palm OS is simple, straight to the point, fast for me to enter/find/remove/edit PIM data. And it plays great ebooks, music, games, etc. By the way, that new game from Astraware named GLYPH is awesome (graphics, voice, beautiful).


- The TX fits great in the hand, has a big screen and is very robust. I have dropped it numerous times on the ground and it is still going strong.
- I can trust my Palm alarms and I cannot trust my HP hx2750 alarms. The stupid HX battery goes dead intermittently for no reason, the alarms go mental and play non stop sometimes (or dont go off) etc. Im sure I could find all the solutions if I dug long enough, but the point is, I JUST DONT CARE AND I DONT HAVE TIME TO WASTE! With my TX, everything is simple and works. I trust it.

So when I see news that Palm OS will go on, I am very pleased, because it means I can count on the future. If my TX breaks, I will be able to buy another one, or a better future device, I can keep my software base, I can hope to see regular updates, etc.

I am really looking forward to a TX 2 with grafitti 3, new suprises and good ol Palm OS .

The Palm TX is the only serious professional handheld out there today in my opinion.

Reply to this comment

What DID they buy?

SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 6:03:26 AM # Q
The FAQ at Access is pretty thorough. Very nice.

PALM gets to use the source code to do any development of =an= OS they want. They get to put it into any device they want. They cannot sell it to third parties. If they want to call it "PalmOS" or equivalent when they DO use it, they have to get it to pass a compatibility test with whatever Access has (as far as they agree with Access abotu what "compatible" means).

And then there's a strange part of the agreement that says:

== "...However, it should be noted that if the
== included Palm OS Garnet code enables at least
== one Palm OS Garnet application to run, Palm is
== required to have this product pass the
== compatibility test. If this product passes the
== compatibility test, Palm is required to
== indicate Palm OS Garnet compatibility following
== the branding guidelines agreed by the two
== companies..."

which has to be wrongly worded ("...is required to...pass...If it passes...").

So, from the FAQ alone, it looks like PALM gets to take the code, use it anywhere, if they want to say "PalmOS" then it's gotta pass a compatibility test (for the nearterm - at some point Access loses the rights to the name PalmOS" or something - no, PALM doesn't get those rights), and whatever that last part above means, and they get to do that for a single charge of $44 million rather than an ongoing recurring per-unit license fee.

Am I yawning yet?

====

As a corollary to this, ACCESS gets back $44 million of their outrageous price they paid for PalmSource (now they only paid a REALLY big price for the Linux side alone of PalmSource) but loses their biggest licensee.

RE: What DID they buy?
twrock @ 12/7/2006 8:36:20 AM # Q
I'm no lawyer, but how's this for an explanation of the section in question?

If Palm uses any of the Garnet code in a product and if that enables even one Garnet app to run on that product, then that product has to pass the compatibility test. (So if it can't pass the compatibility test, then that product violates the agreement.) If the product actually can pass the compatibility test, Palm must appropriately plaster the "Palm OS Garnet Compatible" sticker (or whatever the agreement says they have to do) on that device.

Seems to make sense to me that Access is saying that Palm must either (a) ensure complete compatibility or (b) ensure complete incompatible with Garnet apps. If it can run Garnet apps, then it must be fully compatible and it must say so for the purposes of marketing.

So, any lawyers out there want to tell us what it really says?

Regarding your final point, isn't it interesting that it looks like Palm indeed does get Garnet back, but without really "owning" it, and Access recoups a little of their purchase price (and of course still owns CMS).

I'm still waiting for the mythical color HandEra.

RE: What DID they buy?
Ronin @ 12/7/2006 9:03:48 AM # Q
twrock,

to my lawyerly eye, your analysis was spot on. Simply put if it the "OS" that Palm puts in a device can run any Garnet program, Access has the right to certify it as Garnet compatible. If it does not pass their test(s) for Garnet compatibility then the OS is a no go and either the ability to run any Garnet apps must be removed or the OS must be 'fixed' to meet the compatibility requirements.

I agree that this makes perfect sense for Access. Heck, makes sense for Palm too. I could not imagine Palm releasing an OS of their own that broke compatibility with the existing software database.

Question: How long is the term of this agreement?

In the Spirit of Umoja,
Ronin

RE: What DID they buy?
craigdts @ 12/7/2006 9:07:14 AM # Q
Palm may simpy want the Gartnet PIM apps for future linux palm and microsoft treos (i don't think this requirement includes the PIM apps).

It won't make a lot of sense to have the full garnet running on top of another full OS, such as WM or Linux. Can we expect them now to go the way of os 9 with OSX?

This allows palm's new OS an instant software library until it is able to get it's new OS a following. Once that happens expect garnet compatibility to fade away as all of the programs will be written for the more powerful core Linux os.

I don't like that palm can't license it's new OS to others (which to me says we don't own it). I'd expect them to transition away from palm OS completely in 3-4 years.

RE: What DID they buy?
hkklife @ 12/7/2006 9:39:39 AM # Q
Craigdts; that (3-4 years) is a lot longer than the 3-4 months some of us here had feared (that is, an all WinMob lineup for Palm post-Treo 680)


On another note, didn't Ed Colligan make reference once or twice last year to some kind of "Graffiti 3" that would take the best bits of G1 & G2? I wonder if that is at all on the drawing board for future devices now with all of this licensing hoopla out of the way?

If one is in an especially optimistic mood then yesterday's news does give a glimmer of hope for the following short-term concerns:

-At least one update to the current PDA lineup in '07 (especially in light of the sagging Treo sales)
-A ROM update for the buggy 700p (now that Palm management can turn their attention away from the negotiations w/ Access)
-A possible 2nd EVDO POS Treo (680 or 750 ff?) for CDMA networks to replace the 700p (now that the future of FrankenGarnet is assured)
-A touch more hope for Hawkins' mythical new business (btw, Michael Mace never updated his blog with more "tidbits" for the inquiring minds amongst us).



Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

RE: What DID they buy?
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 9:51:32 AM # Q
I see this more as a UI htemporary hack than anything more permanent, though PALM's own PR-fluff (released 8AM) says they will intend to maintain lower-than-UI compatibility.

To the poster a few posts above - the license is forever.

RE: What DID they buy?
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 12:51:04 PM # Q
craigdts wrote:
It won't make a lot of sense to have the full garnet running on top of another full OS, such as WM or Linux.

Palm OS 5 was basically Palm OS 4 ported to run in an emulation layer on a kernel that supported ARM. Palm OS Cobalt was going to port that same layer to a new operating system. Palm OS for Linux was going to port it again to Linux. ALP has already ported Garnet in its entirety to Linux. Might not make sense to you, but it's worked ok for Palm lo these many years. And in any case, the agreement stipulates that part of what Palm is buying is the right to run Garnet together with any "system technology" that Palm chooses. Kind of an odd stipulation if it's not a right they plan to exercise, don't you think?

hkklife wrote:

Michael Mace never updated his blog with more "tidbits" for the inquiring minds amongst us

Yesterday he did add a somewhat tantalizing note to the comments on the post you're referring to. Rumors from someone who knows someone about a Linux tablet Palm is developing, and something of a digest of some of the other rumourish things he's gleaned from people:

http://mobileopportunity.blogspot.com/2006/11/jeff-hawkins-secret-project-is-coming.html

SeldomVisitor wrote:

I see this more as a UI htemporary hack than anything more permanent

If that were the case, I can't see why Palm would have insisted the "expansion of its existing patent license from ACCESS to cover all current and future Palm products, regardless of the underlying operating system." (from Palm's press release)

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: What DID they buy?
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 1:53:25 PM # Q
>> I see this more as a UI temporary hack than anything more permanent
>
> If that were the case, I can't see why Palm would have insisted
> the "expansion of its existing patent license from ACCESS to cover
> all current and future Palm products, regardless of the underlying
> operating system." ...

Strangely, I would think those words totally reinforce what I posted.

RE: What DID they buy?
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 2:36:17 PM # Q
So if by "UI temporary hack" you meant "Palm getting Garnet to run on a different OS" I guess we agree. Otherwise I'm not sure why Palm would want language that stipulates that the agreement covers all products that use Garnet "regardless of the underlying operating system."

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog
RE: What DID they buy?
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 4:50:56 PM # Q
Uh...so they can have the same "look and feel" that they currently enjoy with PalmOS but with different (incompatible) guts, of course.

RE: What DID they buy?
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 5:47:22 PM # Q
Uh...so they can have the same "look and feel" that they currently enjoy with PalmOS but with different (incompatible) guts, of course.

So we do agree. But that's hardly what I'd call a "temporary hack"! Getting Palm apps to run on another OS is a huge project with years of effort that would only pay off if it was going to be a fairly long-term solution. StyleTap did it (sort of) but with vital chunks of Garnet missing--like synchronization.

Maybe by "temporary hack" you just meant that after some years (when most developers have migrated their apps to a whiz-bang multitasking native API) Palm would do what people say ACCESS will do and shed the Garnet APIs. In that case, sure, that's possible.

Bottom line: we seem to agree that what Palm was paying for was not so much the right to make incremental tweaks of Garnet, but to adopt a fundamentally new OS with new "next generation" features, but also an emulated Garnet environment so people can still run their old apps.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: What DID they buy?
twrock @ 12/7/2006 10:47:52 PM # Q
Bottom line: we seem to agree that what Palm was paying for was not so much the right to make incremental tweaks of Garnet, but to adopt a fundamentally new OS with new "next generation" features, but also an emulated Garnet environment so people can still run their old apps.

Seems this is a both/and not either/or. The agreement allows both, but the latter is the truly important part.

Going back to some previous discussions, this also will allow Palm to keep putting out low end PDA's that run Garnet for as long as they want to. The R&D and compatibility is done already, and a no-frills PIM-centric PDA would cost Palm peanuts to bring to market. It also allows them to create the next generation Palm OS with backward compatibility to the "still" significant library of Garnet apps. It gives them an "in-house" OS upgrade path that they must have if they are to keep improving their products (technological improvements) and aren't planning to completely move to WinMob or be at the mercy of whatever Access is cooking up (ALPOS).

I still gotta wonder if some of this wasn't discussed/agreed to way back when PalmSource was on the auction block. I guessing that Palm wasn't all that interested in having to pay for the perceived value of CMS (what Access perceived the value to be), when Palm was most interested in getting the PalmOS back. This can actually work out very well for Palm.

Now if they could just figure out how to build a device that either doesn't fall apart in a few months or figure out how to truly repair the ones that break, then they might have a product truly worth buying! (Yeah, I'm still very bitter about my TX.)

I'm still waiting for the mythical color HandEra.

RE: What DID they buy?
craigdts @ 12/7/2006 11:01:46 PM # Q
Where I think they will head with linux will be something they can offer differentiation with: such as a locked down feature phone (no ability to install apps), with basic palm OS PIMs (they purchased the right to use) and SMS. With that they won't have to worry about saying "palm os compatible." That should be palms low-end treo. I hope they do it before apple does.

That's about the only thing that I think can give palm the Low end, mid range (680), and high end (better hardware), plus a business targeted WM treo. Ultimately, they are going to need the low-end feature phone (no ability to install apps) to get the mass market AND reduce warranty and support costs (of the carriers primarily). Heck they could even tack on a web browser too. But then lock it from adding software.

If they could bring that feature phone package to the carriers I think they would eat it up. It would increase everyone's margins (I bet only 90% of people add 3rd party anyways besides what comes out of the box). How many treos are returned because of 3rd party software conflicts?

I've argued palm should do this for some time . . . although recently saw an article that apple intended to do the same thing with a keyboard phone - that only had SMS and no email. I think that would be a brilliant move and would hate to see apple do it before Palm. Whoever does it soonest and best (palm SMS is great) will start to take a huge piece of the featurephone market pie.

Palm will do well to do something similar to .mac in the future as well to simplify the syncing process.

BTW I think it sucks that palm was not able to get ownership of the code and then let ACCESS use it for compatibility. That means palm will not be able to license their new OS to anyone else. But I guess they don't want to do that again (try to be like Microsoft), I guess they are now going to go back to the apple model.



RE: What DID they buy?
craigdts @ 12/7/2006 11:18:41 PM # Q
seldomv,

how much did palm actually end up paying over their minimums (yes I know they could back out because of missed milestones)?

What did they owe in '07-'09 per the original agreement?
nevermind i'll find it . . .
http://www.palmsource.com/press/2005/052405_palmonepalmos.html
"which includes $65 million for calendar years 2007 to 2009 subject to meeting certain development milestones."

So they actually saved (65-44) $21 million because of Access.

It should tell us something if the value that palm once saw in Garnet dropped from $65 to $44 million over the past year. Probably shows the reduced sky high expectations they had for selling treos. I think if they switch them to feature phones as described about they can become a powerhouse manufacturer in the US.

RE: What DID they buy?
craigdts @ 12/7/2006 11:30:30 PM # Q
hmmmm
"http://www.palmsource.com/press/2005/052405_palmonepalmos.html
"which includes $65 million for calendar years 2007 to 2009 subject to meeting certain development milestones."

So they actually saved (65-44) $21 million because of Access."

that's not right. someone can break it down better than me, I vaguely remember it being less '07-'09 (they broke it down somewhere) and the $65 over that time was conditional on ALP.

Either way if someone figures it throw in the $30 million for the name as well.



RE: What DID they buy?
craigdts @ 12/7/2006 11:37:00 PM # Q
This makes the SMS, PIM, and maybe Web featurephone look better . . .

Teens prefer messaging to email
http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20061002-7877.html

I'm not a teen but so do I on my phone.

Leave email for high end smartphones.

RE: What DID they buy?
SeldomVisitor @ 12/8/2006 6:32:36 AM # Q
Two different posts addressed:
=====================

>> Uh...so they can have the same "look and feel" that they
>> currently enjoy with PalmOS but with different (incompatible) guts,
>> of course.
>
> ...Getting Palm apps to run on another OS is a huge project...

Maybe I'm being really unclear or something that you continue to misunderstand what I'm posting even though I'm using different wording to try to force understanding?

In all posts I've made around this subtopic I've meant to say that ONLY the user interface is the same; that is ALL that matters to Joe Enduser per PALM's continuous marketing efforts about "user experience".

The underlying application(s), however, change to work on the underlying operating system (or perhaps a layer above that). This thought is reinforced by PALM's words about the deal:

== "...The company plans to ensure that applications now compatible
== with Palm OS Garnet will operate with little or no modification
== in future Palm products that employ Palm OS Garnet as the company
== evolves it over time to support Palm's product differentiation strategy..."

The key part being that "little"...

===========

> ...how much did palm actually end up paying over their minimums...

As you noted, they have no minimums anymore - pure per-unit licensing is in place. However, the PRIOR contractual mandate was for $65 million - from last December's 10Q:

== "...The renewed agreement includes a minimum annual royalty and
== license commitment of $41.0 million, $42.5 million, $35.0 million,
== $20.0 million and $10.0 million for the contract years ending
== December 3, 2005 through 2009, respectively..."

so they're "saving" $21 million ($65-$44) over what those prior mandates were --- (*).

===========

(*) "Saving"...giggle...that's like the guy on TV saying

== "Save 50% if you call RIGHT NOW!!!"

when you can save 100% if you don't call at all. That is to say, one absolutely MUST ask oneself "Would PALM have bought ANYTHING a couple years hence?" had they not obtained that license. So "saved" can be an ... interesting ... word.


Reply to this comment

Why is new always better?

hgoldner @ 12/7/2006 7:03:48 AM # Q
Yeah, it would be great if they could come out with a brandy new OS which dazzles and impresses even the most jaundiced eye among us Palm devotees (you *are* a Palm devotee if you're here, right? Otherwise aren't you just a troll?)

But the bottom line is that Garnet works. Yeah, I wish someone with half a brain could figure out how to handle caching in the NVFS based units, it seems stupid to me that we need add-on utilities to keep our T|X's and other units from resetting spontaneously, and there are those Wifi issues with the Treo, but aren't we all using these things easily, intuitively and frequently to run our daily lives? And haven't we all heard from the Mobile Windows devotees showing off their shiny new units that it takes them sixteen times longer to do what we can do in one or two taps?

I like Palm OS just as it is. Frankly, I still run Intuit's Quickbooks Pro 2003 because it still does what I need it to do and I don't believe in 'renting' software. These things are tools. If the tool does the job, why replace it.

Don't we still use shovels to dig holes, rakes to clean up leaves? (Sorry, a temperate zone-centric reference) Do I have to contemplate upgrading the tools in my shed every year?

Fix grafitti, fix wifi, fix things, but let's not throw the baby out with the bathwater just because the baby's growing up.

Harold

RE: Why is new always better?
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 7:56:21 AM # Q
> ...(you *are* a Palm devotee if you're here, right? Otherwise aren't you just a
> troll?)...

Your "logic" leaves much to be desired.

Reply to this comment

Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started

Gekko @ 12/7/2006 9:09:27 AM # Q

FrankenGarnet can't handle what's here and what's to come unless it gets a complete overhaul.

http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Investing/CompanyFocus/CellPhoneGadgetryIsJustGettingStarted.aspx

ACCESS makes out like a bandit. Palm does the heavy lifting for them, pays them $44M, and ACCESS keeps non-exclusive rights.

Does "perpetual" mean that $44M buys Palm endless usage rights with no sunset?



RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 9:55:55 AM # Q
> ...Does "perpetual" mean that $44M buys Palm endless usage
> rights with no sunset?

Yes.

Access sold PALM the source code and says "Go ahead, use it yto your heart's content, change it, break it, enjoy! But if you make something that works with what WE do, then you have to say it's "Access PalmOS compatible", otherwise you do your thing quietly. You and we get to decide what 'compatible' means".

I think...

So Palm's distributed Next Great Thing can have as one part a really STOOOOOPID but really CHEAP flip-phone that retains a PalmOS-based UI but offloads ALL of it's real smarts to PALM's Linux-based servers...

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 1:11:13 PM # Q
Gekko wrote:
ACCESS makes out like a bandit. Palm does the heavy lifting for them, pays them $44M, and ACCESS keeps non-exclusive rights.

Palm isn't doing any "heavy lifting" for ACCESS. The agreement allows Palm to keep its modifications to itself. ACCESS probably expected Palm to license ALP, which now seems exceedingly unlikely, and factored that probability into what they paid for PalmSource last year. I wouldn't exactly say ACCESS made out like a bandit in this deal, although I think it makes sense for everyone involved.

Does "perpetual" mean that $44M buys Palm endless usage rights with no sunset?

Yeah, but what's not clear to me is whether this relieves Palm of any and all future royalty payments to ACCESS. Is there still a payment per-device? Also, what about HotSync and Palm Desktop? Not sure, but I don't think they're part of what is being called "Palm OS Garnet." So Palm needs to keep licensing them? Or plans to dispense with them in favor of new sync and desktop software?

There are a number of things that aren't very clear about this deal.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 1:55:16 PM # Q
Access is very clear about payment - the one time fee REPLACES the prior licensing agreement.

PalmOS is PALM's to do with what they please forever, albeit they might not be able to call whatever they do with it "PalmOS", at no extra cost.

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
Gekko @ 12/7/2006 4:55:14 PM # Q

>Palm isn't doing any "heavy lifting" for ACCESS. The agreement allows Palm to keep its modifications to itself.

Beersie - where are you seeing the above?


I read "Agreement benefits licensees and developers" which implies to me that the heavy lifting benefits all licensees. This was the "Nagel Dream" - where all they many licensees would all modify, innovate, and contribute to PalmOS and thus make it better than WinMob - kind of like the Linux Model Theory. Socialism at its finest.

http://www.access-company.com/news/press/Current/120606_palm.html


RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 5:02:43 PM # Q
>> Palm isn't doing any "heavy lifting" for ACCESS. The
>> agreement allows Palm to keep its modifications to itself.
>
> Beersie - where are you seeing the above?

The ACCESS FAQ somewhat-strongly suggests it:

-- http://www.access-company.com/developers/press/palm_faq.html

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 6:06:52 PM # Q
See http://investor.palm.com/pressdetail.cfm?ReleaseID=221399 :

"Under the agreement, Palm has a perpetual license to use as well as to innovate on the Palm OS Garnet code base. Palm will retain ownership rights in its innovations."

I don't see anything in the FAQ you linked to that says anything about Palm having to give their modifications back to ACCESS. Neither does ACCESS have to give any future modifications they make to Palm:

"This new license agreement is only for Palm OS Garnet as it exists today as previously delivered to Palm.... The new agreement... does not include any updates or upgrades from ACCESS to the existing Palm OS Garnet code base."

Sounds like they'll be doing business with each other for a while (Palm will presumably have to keep paying royalties for Palm Desktop and HotSync, for example) but won't be collaborating on development any more.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
Gekko @ 12/7/2006 6:19:39 PM # Q

thanks for the FAQ. i think this answers it:

"Palm will retain the ownership rights for any modifications it makes to the Palm OS Garnet source code."

So I guess the "Nagel Dream" is dead:

"Microsoft's reference model for handhelds is quite rigid. They're effectively clones," says Nagel. "Our model is completely different. We're developing a design where the software is compatible but the designs are distinct." What PalmSource offers its device partners is not an operating system per se, but a set of operating system components that can be selected and added to by individual vendors as they see fit. The only restrictions in this process is that developments thus made are returned to the PalmSource pool and that all devices must pass PalmSource's software compatibility test.

This approach, says Nagel, both enriches the Palm environment and helps speed time to market for other licensees, which can leverage developments already made by their peers. Sony, for instance, has been particularly active in developing upper side APIs and is currently engaged with PalmSource on building an IPv6 connectivity stack.

"We don't believe this market will develop as a clone business," adds Nagel. "The best way to have rapid progress is to open the platform to third parties. Clone markets compete almost exclusively on price."

http://www.cbronline.com/article_cbr.asp?guid=0A0C8F28-546A-4A31-A153-86BBA9B35190

(You know I love to pull out old Nagel prognostications. They are timeless classics. And they are now for the ages.)

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 6:20:42 PM # Q
Weirdest part of the FAQ:

Q. Can Palm, Inc., use Palm OS Garnet with other system technologies?

A. Yes. [blah blah blah]

Q. Does this mean Palm, Inc., can use Palm OS Garnet on a Windows Mobile-based device from Palm, Inc.?

A. Yes. [blah blah blah]

Q. If Palm Inc., develops a new version of the operating system, can they name it Palm OS?

A. It would not be appropriate for ACCESS to speculate about Palm's business or any possible future product offerings.

So it's appropriate to hypothesize that Palm could do something like create a Windows Mobile-based product that runs Palm OS Garnet, but it would be inappropriate speculation about Palm's business to answer a question about whether Palm has the right to use the name "Palm OS" in future versions of the OS?

That seems like a totally straightforward question that has nothing whatsoever to do with speculation. Whereas the inclusion of a question that explicitly describes a rather distinct future scenario like Palm OS Garnet running on Windows Mobile seems well, quite speculative indeed. After all, weren't they the ones to make up the questions? :-)

Who knows what the lawyers were thinking there.... Or maybe it's marketing, trying to deflect attention away from other more probable scenarios that ACCESS doesn't want people to be thinking about? ;-)

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

Best of Both Worlds
Gekko @ 12/7/2006 6:36:23 PM # Q

Comments on: Palm and Microsoft Announce Windows Mobile Treo
RE: Best of Both Worlds
Gekko @ 9/26/2005 7:24:11 PM #

What's great news is that MSFT allowed Palm the ability to soften the WM GUI and "Palm-ize" it. And Gates said that Palm will have input on WM 6, WM 7, WM 8 etc. This is truly the best of both worlds - Palm's expertise on GUI/User-Friendliness combined with MSFT's under-the-hood power and standards/compatibility with Exchange/Office etc. Who says you can't have it all?

http://palminfocenter.com/comments/8109/

-----

PalmOS GUI on WinMob for WM6. Maybe PalmOS 6.0 *IS* WinMob 6.0??? Wrap your tiny brains around that one!



RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
hkklife @ 12/7/2006 9:02:17 PM # Q
Gekko;

The old Nagel-isms are timeless, yes, but the Yankowski gold-threaded suit excerpt from Piloting Palm is a TRUE classic!

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
Gekko @ 12/7/2006 9:17:08 PM # Q

"In another room, a few executives watched Carl Yankowski's interview on CNBC, taping it for playback at the employee meeting that was to commence in minutes. After CNBC announcers gushed over "the most talked-about IPO," the camera cut to Carl Yankowski in the Nasdaq studio. Usually a compelling public speaker, Yankowski seemed out of his element. When asked about larger screens for palmtops, he answered stiffly, "We are well positioned whichever way the market goes." As the interview came to a close, the reporter said, "I've got to ask you about your suit." Yankowski smiled. He was wearing a very special suit, he let on, designed to satisfy the public's high expectations from Palm's IPO. The shiny pinstripes woven into the otherwise standard wool suit were made from threads of pure gold. CNBC cut back to the studio anchor. "Was that for real?" he asked the correspondent. The Palm managers assembled around the TV set looked at each other. "We're not showing this video," one of the executives decreed. Then they walked out to start the employee meeting." - http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0471089656/



RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
Gekko @ 12/7/2006 9:30:53 PM # Q

I'm hoping Beersie wears a gold-threaded suit on the day of the Pikesoft IPO.



RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
SeldomVisitor @ 12/8/2006 6:28:16 AM # Q
> ...I don't see anything in the FAQ you linked to that says
> anything about Palm having to give their modifications back
> to ACCESS...

Ahem...correct...I posted that post to reinforce your stance, not to contradict it.

RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
Gekko @ 12/8/2006 6:50:04 AM # Q

>"We don't believe this market will develop as a clone business," adds Nagel. "The best way to have rapid progress is to open the platform to third parties. Clone markets compete almost exclusively on price."

But commoditization and lower and lower prices are all part of the normal product life cycle of a mass-market item. Lower prices are what brings products to the MASSES. And the commoditization, large sales volumes, competition, and economies of scale helps bring prices even lower.



RE: Cell-phone gadgetry is just getting started
freakout @ 12/8/2006 7:47:53 PM # Q
Wow, that 700w thread was a walk down memory lane Gekko. Where has Surur gone nowadays?

Tim
I apologise for any and all emoticons that appear in my posts. You may shoot them on sight.
Treo 270 ---> Treo 650 ---> Crimson Treo 680
Reply to this comment

Link to Palm's recently-posted statement

hkklife @ 12/7/2006 10:16:12 AM # Q
http://investor.palm.com/pressdetail.cfm?ReleaseID=221399

I was expecting a few quotes and/or more "fluff" from them. Perhaps a more elaborate statement is forthcoming?

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

RE: Link to Palm's recently-posted statement
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 12:32:36 PM # Q
They posted a release that schedules the Q2 2007 conference call right after posting the release about the new agreement, so I'm guessing they may be wanting to start talking about what this means for future strategy at that time.

http://investor.palm.com/pressdetail.cfm?ReleaseID=221409

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog

Reply to this comment

Not Supprised

potter @ 12/7/2006 8:55:09 AM # Q
The rumor (very strong indications that it is true) is that Palm Inc is working on their own Linux based OS. In order for them to provide the Palm OS presentation layer (or compatibility layer, or emulation layer (depending on their approach)) they will need intimate access to the Palm OS source.

Note: Since Palm Inc owns the Palm trademark, whatever new OS Palm Inc produces may be called "Palm OS", and whatever OS Access produces must be called something else. Therefore the next version of Palm OS will be produced by Palm Inc, not Access.

RE: Not Supprised
SeldomVisitor @ 12/7/2006 10:46:27 AM # Q
I don't believe PALM owns "PalmOS" - that is owned by a separate entity from PALM and Access...or something.

See the FAQ that Access put out about this sale.

RE: Not Supprised
cervezas @ 12/7/2006 12:35:32 PM # Q
As I read it, Palm doesn't own "Palm OS" in a totally unencumbered way, but they have nailed down contractually the criteria under which they can call a future OS that they build "Palm OS," namely that existing Palm OS apps need to be able to run properly against the current testing harness for Garnet (which Palm would want anyway). It amounts to almost the same thing, as far as I can tell.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog
RE: Not Supprised
Ryan @ 12/7/2006 1:28:13 PM # Q
2 questions from the FAQ:


Q. Can Palm, Inc., use the name Palm OS?

A. Under terms of the agreement, we have given Palm the right to use either “Palm OS by ACCESS” or the product's new name (still to be announced) when referring to the operating system licensed with this new agreement.

Q. If Palm Inc., develops a new version of the operating system, can they name it Palm OS?

A. It would not be appropriate for ACCESS to speculate about Palm's business or any possible future product offerings.

Based on that info it sounds like they would want to come up with an original name, rather than to have to have the "by ACCESS" tacked on the end of their new product.

Reply to this comment

desipite some positive comments, I'm not optimistic

pmjoe @ 12/7/2006 1:33:39 PM # Q
Some people here seem to think that this is the sign that Palm is really going to use this to put together the Linux-based Palm OS we've been waiting for.

Sorry, but everthing I've seen from this Palm management leads me to believe that they'll keep sucking away at the dead cow Franken-Garnet is until they get the last drop of milk out of it. There is nothing in this announcement that would lead me to think otherwise. They just want the code to keep hacking away at it. It'd be a pleasant surprise if they do an actual OS overhaul, but as far as I'm concerned, Palm has been a dying/dead company for the last 2-3 years and this is no sign of direction change.

Reply to this comment

Many grays areas.

VampireLestat @ 12/7/2006 11:08:09 PM # Q
You need to be a lawyer to understand the details of the agreement.

RE: Many grays areas.
Gekko @ 12/8/2006 6:45:56 AM # Q

or a vampire.



Reply to this comment

Seems to me the answer is yes

Mauibro @ 12/8/2006 1:32:20 AM # Q

Weirdest part of the FAQ:


Q. Can Palm, Inc., use Palm OS Garnet with other system technologies?

A. Yes. [blah blah blah]


Q. Does this mean Palm, Inc., can use Palm OS Garnet on a Windows Mobile-based device from Palm, Inc.?

A. Yes. [blah blah blah]

Q. If Palm Inc., develops a new version of the operating system, can they name it Palm OS?

A. It would not be appropriate for ACCESS to speculate about Palm's business or any possible future product offerings.


So it's appropriate to hypothesize that Palm could do something like create a Windows Mobile-based product that runs Palm OS Garnet, but it would be inappropriate speculation about Palm's business to answer a question about whether Palm has the right to use the name "Palm OS" in future versions of the OS?

That seems like a totally straightforward question that has nothing whatsoever to do with speculation. Whereas the inclusion of a question that explicitly describes a rather distinct future scenario like Palm OS Garnet running on Windows Mobile seems well, quite speculative indeed. After all, weren't they the ones to make up the questions? :-)

Beerman, I dont see the apparent contradiction as a surprise at all.
Any speculation that Palm will develop an OS apart from this agreement is not good for Access.
Access controls Garnet, not the name.
Palm is limited in what it calls Garnet true.
ACCESS can require that their Garnet OS not be called "PalmOS" by anyone if they wish.
So yes they "allow" Palm to use "PalmOS by ACCESS" or whatever.

But I see nothing that says Palm cant call a Garnet free OS "PalmOS."
Thus while they can control the use of the name "PalmOS" on a Garnet rooted OS, or even Garnet on WinMob, they have no comment on something Garnet free.

I believe the reason why they refuse to answer the question of whether Palm can create an entirely seperate OS and call it PalmOS is because the answer is yes.
They just dont want to say it.

The fact that they call it speculating on Palms future plans is pretty much an admission that Palm can indeed do it.

If the answer was "no" there would be no speculation.


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