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Comments on: CNBC on Ed Colligan's Future

CNBC has posted a thoroughly interesting new article in their Tech Check with Jim Goldman column. In this installment, Mr. Goldman takes to task the naysayers, critics and certain members of the press who have been calling for Ed Colligan to resign as CEO of Palm, Inc. Mr. Goldman goes on to reveal his longtime association with Colligan that dates back all the way to the pre-Palm and Handspring days at Radius (1986-1993), lending this article a bit more insight into the credentials and capabilities of Colligan than most "insider"-type pieces.

Goldman goes on to say that the new entry-level Palm Centro smartphone may represent the future killer app for Palm in that it offers "smart phone status at dumb handset prices". Subsidized, post-2-year-contract price aside, the Centro still sells for a staggering $400, with its older Treo brethren commanding even higher full retail or unlocked prices. No comments are made in regards to Palm's upcoming Linux-based Palm OS successor or the fact that Palm's recent released and rumored upcoming Treo releases appears to be almost entirely Windows Mobile-based.

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stupidity

medevilenemy @ 2/1/2008 12:21:04 AM # Q
The thing is, palm shouldn't be shaped into a more competitive smartphone manufacturer. They are limiting themselves too much, and consequently being marginalized by their inability to spend the amounts on R&D that other companies are (and lack of particularly innovative style). I have always been , and will continue to be a palm loyalist, but even I have to say that their current path is lunacy. They need to fast track their new OS, and take more risks in hardware design... and now of all times is perfect to reinvent the traditional handheld PDA into something more fitting for the time. Nobody else is really touching the segment, and chances are much of the reason sales have dropped is because of the lack of effort in that regard.

THINGS PALM SHOULD DO:
1) Fast track their new system -- and they better make sure it is an advancement over the competition.

2) WiFi on ALL products -- it is about time.

3) Bring back the PDA with high capacity flash storage (not that expensive anymore), finger-touch compatible interface (heck, buy in to the fad just to grab a bit of the market), and More creative designs (the old design style is pretty, but not enough to capture attention anymore).

4) Its too early in the morning to list more...

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Unlocked Treo 680 price

carguy @ 2/1/2008 12:26:24 AM # Q
The article claims that unlocked/out-of-contract Treos cost over $400. The only (as far as I know) unlocked Treo is the Treo 680, and it sells direct from Palm for only $379. See http://www.palm.com/us/products/smartphones/treo680/
RE: Unlocked Treo 680 price
bcombee @ 2/1/2008 1:47:59 AM # Q
You can buy Treo and Centro devices directly from Palm without getting a new contract or renewing your old one. Those usually are $400 or more. They will still be locked to a specific carrier.

Killing Foleo?
RussianGuy @ 2/1/2008 5:52:15 AM # Q
I find it strange that they referred to 'Killing Foleo' rather than postponing in that quote above...

Ben, what are the chances we will see Foleo 2, let's say, before the end of 2009?

RE: Unlocked Treo 680 price
rpa @ 2/1/2008 3:37:25 PM # Q
I just ordered an unlocked Treo 500 from a eXpansys Hong Kong for about USD383 FYI.

rpa
Palm Pilot >> Palm Tungsten E user
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The PDA are history

Nycran @ 2/1/2008 5:34:46 AM # Q
IMHO, if we're talking about non-vertical markets, a PDA without cellular access is dead in the water, and a PDA with cellular access is called a smartphone.

I would guess that most people want a device that connects to the Internet whilst they're out on the road. Make no mistake, the Internet is THE killer application for this decade.

In short, I think Palm is on the money in their focus. The only significant consumer market that exists for PDAs is in music/movies/multimedia, and Apple pretty much has that nailed. Palm could try and compete against Apple, but it would be a difficult and possibly futile path.

The success of the Centro proves that there is strong market for low cost yet capable phones.

What palm needs to do is to NOT rush the linux OS out, but rather to ensure that when it is released that it friggen rocks. It must be fun to use, look good, be fast and responsive, and be completely open to third party development like Palm OS is now. If they can do that then Palm will live to see another day.

RE: The PDA are history
oneniner @ 2/1/2008 7:03:33 AM # Q
Yes, I think Nycran is right - the internet is the killer app. However, trying to view web pages on a smart phone (or even a PDA) is way too much for all but the diehards.
I firmly believe the Foleo idea was the correct one - a cut down PC close that offered instant on and connectivity to the internet AS IT'S MAIN FUNCTION. Yes, the execution was flawed - no wi-fi, slow processor, etc - but otherwise a sound strategy.
I have one of the eeePC and the amount of interest it generates is incredible...most people say that they just need a basic machine to get onto the internet, or use it for remoting into the office. A work processor, spreadsheet program and presentation software, plus calendar and email is about it.
And the trade off is that a slower processor will normally mean more battery life (and also somewhat cooler on the lap).
I resntly had an interstate meeting, and left my work laptop at the office, slipping the eeePC into my leather folio. Didn't need anything else, and was a lot more comfortable carrying it, too.
Yes, I have a smart phone (Samsung BlackJack) and I do use it to get emails, but I restrict the download size - and I don't try and view attachments with it. A "smartphone companion" would be ideal.
What people need to remember is that the appeal of having a lightweight, almost full size, long battery life PC is that there will always be a trade off in storage capacity and CPU speed versus battery life and weight. If Palm delivers a product that lasts for 8-10 hours between chrges, is instant on, and weighs less than 1 kg (2 lbs) then don't expect to be able to run the latest gaming software, or stream DVDs.

"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm."
Sir Winston Churchill

RE: The PDA are history
mikecane @ 2/1/2008 10:06:06 AM # Q
>>>no wi-fi,

I think you mistyped. It had WiFi. What it lacked was YouTube.

RE: The PDA are history
PacManFoo @ 2/1/2008 10:10:57 AM # Q
It just wouldn't be right if a day went by without a PDA's are dead thread being posted at PIC. Glad my PDA is still alive because I use it everyday and I have no upgrade path from Palm.

PDA's Past and Present:
Palm TX (Number 2)
Palm - IIIxe, Vx, M500, M505, Tungsten T, TX
Handspring - Edge, Platinum, Deluxe
Sony - SJ22
Casio-EM500
Apple - MP110, MP2000, MP2100
RE: The PDA are history
rpa @ 2/1/2008 3:44:18 PM # Q
If there was a market for PDAs, someone would be pumping them out. At the moment, it only seems to be HP with any new products and I wonder what their sales volume is. I still use my Tungsten E every day and hope it keeps working a while longer. A T|X with a GSM radio would be a good transition product IMO while we await the products in the pipeline.....just dreaming for a minute.

Palm was a very prolific company during the heyday of the PDA but they went quiet after the Treo 600/650 success. Same problem with Motorola post-Razr. Complacency in the tech sector is not viable as you are soon overtaken by others. Compare these companies to Nokia where there is a new model pumped out every month or so. You might not realize this unless you travel outside the US where Nokia dominates.

rpa
Palm Pilot >> Palm Tungsten E user

RE: The PDA are history
jimn367 @ 2/1/2008 4:14:53 PM # Q
Hmmm - HP just launched 3 new models, Nokia is gaining quite a bit of steam with the 800 and the NEW 810 internet tablets, the EEE PC and it's clones are selling like hotcakes, and if the ipod touch isn't a PDA well then meet my nephew the monkey (connecting the dots...I'll be a monkey's uncle...)

Then there's all of the UMPCs that people want, but can't afford.

In fact didn't we just recently have a thread that the lowly, slow selling, long in the tooth Tungsten TX was still 18% of Palm's units shipped?

Have you seen how much Sony UXs are STILL selling for on e-bay? What 5 years later?

Your right - no market, move along, nothing to see here....

RE: The PDA are history
Nycran @ 2/1/2008 8:52:50 PM # Q
>> Nokia is gaining quite a bit of steam with the 800 and the NEW 810 internet tablets

Do you have any sales figures on these? Unless they're going to sell 500,000+ units of these at a good margin then I wouldn't call it a good market.

>> EEE PC and it's clones are selling like hotcakes

The EEE PC is NOT a PDA, it's a notebook that happens to be damn cheap and very cool. It's what the Foleo should have been.

>> and if the ipod touch isn't a PDA well then meet my nephew the monkey

The ipod touch is not perceived by the market to be a PDA, it's marketed as a funky multimedia device. I don't see those dancing silhouettes on Apple's advertisements entered their to-do list. It's about music and movies.

My point is, the devices that Palm were famous for (Pilot, Palm III, T3, Tx) do not fit it into any of the above categories. They do not have a cool notebook or a sexy multimedia player. What they have works best as a smartphone.

RE: The PDA are history
PacManFoo @ 2/2/2008 6:31:03 PM # Q
>>>The ipod touch is not perceived by the market to be a PDA, it's marketed as a funky multimedia device. I don't see those dancing silhouettes on Apple's advertisements entered their to-do list. It's about music and movies.<<<

Doesn't really matter how it's perceived. The fact is that it is capable of doing many of the same things that your traditional PDA can do. Apple sure won't mind selling one to you if your more interested in using it for internet and PIM then listening to music.


>>>My point is, the devices that Palm were famous for (Pilot, Palm III, T3, Tx) do not fit it into any of the above categories. They do not have a cool notebook or a sexy multimedia player. What they have works best as a smartphone.<<<

CorePlayer and Ptunes are very nice on my TX.

PDA's Past and Present:
Palm TX (Number 2)
Palm - IIIxe, Vx, M500, M505, Tungsten T, TX
Handspring - Edge, Platinum, Deluxe
Sony - SJ22
Casio-EM500
Apple - MP110, MP2000, MP2100

RE: The PDA are history
jimn367 @ 2/4/2008 9:47:09 AM # Q
How are you defining a PDA?

You were using the definition of no cellular access. Small form factor computing without cellular access is not dead. I was addressing small form factor computing as PDAs. I really don't know any other way to define it. The EEEPC is no less PDA than my Sony UX was.



RE: The PDA are history
hkklife @ 2/5/2008 3:16:00 PM # Q
Yes, but is an EEEPC running Win XP still a PDA?

I'd define a PDA as:

-Core functionlaity of pre-loaded PIM + media apps
-Uses a touchscreen (with or without a stylus) and/or a keyboard for data input. So (IE; an iPod Touch is a PDA but an iPod Classic is not).
-Some kind of PC synchronization component and/or wireless connectivity
-Instant-on power functionality or very close to it
-Uses an OS specifically designed for small FF computing. So an EEEPC running XP is not a PDA...but the original Linux shell + apps provided by Acer does qualify.


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

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Colligan: RESIGN!

mikecane @ 2/1/2008 10:04:23 AM # Q
>>>Ask him and he'll tell you that the smart phone market is only just beginning, that trying to pick a winner among all these big-name competitors when only 5 percent of the market has been tapped is a fool's chore. He makes a compelling case in a compelling way.

Of course he'll make a case, you eejit. You think he'll sit there and announce, "I'm FAIL!"???

>>>[Palm is] offering smart phone status at dumb handset prices. And that's why the company's Centro is so important to Palm's future. Some might say Centro IS Palm's future.

So Palm has commoditized smartphones. This is a good thing? Does Palm think it's Asus with an EeePC of cellphones? Whatever happened to those Nokia Dreams, Colligan? Oh I see, you finally HAD to admit what the hell your sorry-assed OS and hardware are WORTH IN THE MARKET.

This is just a very silly article.

And that quote at the end is one I'm sure I'll be posting with a new Dumbazz of the Year mention at my blog a few months from now.

RE: Colligan: RESIGN!
SeldomVisitor @ 2/1/2008 10:16:25 AM # Q
> ...And that quote at the end is one I'm sure I'll be posting
> with a new Dumbazz of the Year mention at my blog a few months
> from now.

Ya think?

Lol!


RE: Colligan: RESIGN!
hkklife @ 2/1/2008 10:43:02 AM # Q
Let's not forget who was in charge when Palm decided to go smartphone-only...and who was in charge when buggy, under-spec'd, overpriced machines were released (LifeDrive, 700p, 700w). And come to think of it, who gave the Fooleo the greenlight in the first place along with the questionable entry into opening retail stores?

And didn't we just hear moaning and groaning recently from Palm about their reduced margins due to the Centro's success?

If Ed's quote about computer guys not knowing the phone market was THE quote of last year, then the quote at the end of this paragraph is this year's winner so far.

I've got a new mantra for you, Mike:

"Rubinstein, clean house!"


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

RE: Colligan: RESIGN!
CFreymarc @ 2/2/2008 4:32:38 PM # Q
So what secret society did this guy join to get in this position?
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Colligan: MacBook Eated Yur Instant On!

mikecane @ 2/2/2008 8:43:15 PM # Q
Here's the proof, baby. It WORKS too!

http://mikecane2008.wordpress.com/2008/02/02/macbook-air-mini-fondle/

Where's your Instant On God now, Colligan? Jeffrey? Donna? Bueller? McFly? Hello?

I also learned I can post to my blog with an iPhone. Something I CANNOT do with my LifeDrive!

http://mikecane2008.wordpress.com/2008/02/02/test-post-from-iphone/
http://mikecane2008.wordpress.com/2008/02/02/blog-notes-today-off/

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He's Right

abosco @ 2/2/2008 9:58:00 PM # Q
He's doing a great job! These people who think that closing the retail stores and killing the Foleo are signs of weakness have no clue how to make a company great.

He is doing a great job. Those of you who think that wasting years of R&D time and money on canceled projects and years of negative profits were detrimental to Palm's stability have absolutely no clue how to make a company great. It's a brilliant strategy. They borrowed the idea from Apple to "Think different." Everybody is trying to make money. Palm is trying to lose money.

Here's where Palm went wrong: too many accountants, too many managers, too many poor marketing teams, and not enough engineers. The company was 95% business/litigation and 5% product development.

-Bosco
NX80v + Wifi + BT + S710a

RE: He's Right
Poopie @ 2/5/2008 2:46:48 PM # Q

Here's where Palm went wrong: too many accountants, too many managers, too many poor marketing teams, and not enough engineers. The company was 95% business/litigation and 5% product development.

I often wonder about tech companies that staffed up during the dotcom boom: If everyone had to reapply for their job today, how many people would be rehired?

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