Rumor: Possible Palm OS Powered SmartPhone?

PrototypePalmInfocenter Exclusive: An anonymous source has sent us this image, of what appears to be a Palm OS Powered SmartPhone. A quick look at the image shows a possible built in digital camera, microphone, and high-res screen without a silkscreened graffiti area.

It is unclear which licensee has developed this handheld or if it is just a design mockup. You can click on the image for a larger picture.

This image could quite possibly be from a design-study mockup that is used for gauging focus-group reactions or internal "concept PDAs". Companies will often take a number of different design ideas (sometimes just one), build them up into (semi-) functioning hardware (or sometimes even just images) and get people's reactions. This is during the design phase and often they will then mix and match features etc. as they refine the hardware and feature-set.

On the other had, this could be an image of a next generation Palm OS Powered SmartPhone. One possibility that you can't rule out is that this could be a crude mock-up made by some overzealous "fanboy" created in Photoshop or CAD. This could even be some sort of new Palm OS tablet-like model.

Some things that we can tell based on the image is that the device has some form of high resolution screen. There is also no dedicated silkscreened graffiti area. We can't tell exactly but it could be anywhere from 320x480 to 480x640. The model would also likely have a form of virtual graffiti or other alternative input method.

There are icons for the standard DateBook, Address Book, the Web Pro Browser and an unfamiliar icon in the shape of a mobile phone. The small circle on the right looks to be a microphone, which would support voice/phone abilities.

As Always, We will bring you more on this story as it develops.

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treo007 @ 11/13/2002 1:42:52 PM #
For me a phone has to look at least somewhat like a phone. This looks like an interesting handheld however. Leave the camera off or make it optional though. I have no need for poor resolution photos.

Low Resolution Photos
HandAble @ 11/13/2002 2:11:57 PM #
I used to think the same thing ("no use for low resolution photos") until my wife was in an automobile accident.. she was able to use the built in camera of her NR70V to take pictures before the cars were moved, making it impossible for the guilty party to claim any sort of innocence.

RE: Phone?
abressler @ 11/13/2002 2:18:53 PM #
As long as your wife wasn't the guilty party!

RE: Phone?
JPVann @ 11/13/2002 3:26:11 PM #
As long as your wife wasn't the guilty party!


Jer 23:29

RE: Phone?
big_raji @ 11/13/2002 3:30:13 PM #
I still don't understand how someone could look at this picture and think it was a phone.

There's nothing about it that tells me that it's a phone.

George W. Bush at his best!

RE: Phone?
abosco @ 11/13/2002 4:06:14 PM #
Well, possibly the button on the right that is in the shape of a cell phone? Or the microphone being in the exact position for being talked into while being in your hand?

In my opinion, it's fake. Anonymous source + mixture of things only Palm does + mixture of things Palm said they will never do = phoney. Sure, it could possibly be the next generation smartphone, but don't you remember when Palm said they wanted to incorporate D-Pads on all of their models? They even did it on the Tungsten W. Remember the third button on the i705? It's in the same exact position and the same exact design.

Eh, I don't know, it could really go either way. I would say that it was fake, though, if I had to choose.

This signature is witty. You like it.

RE: Phone?
Admin @ 11/13/2002 4:12:10 PM #
Initially I thought it could be a smartphone, the more I look at it, looks more like a web-pad or tablet pc.
RE: Phone?
rsc1000 @ 11/13/2002 4:32:09 PM #
>>In my opinion, it's fake. Anonymous source + mixture of things only Palm does + mixture of things Palm said they will never do = phoney. Sure, it could possibly be the next generation smartphone, but don't you remember when Palm said they wanted to incorporate D-Pads on all of their models?

No,no,no - read the article. It said 'licensee' - a Palm OS device NOT a 'Palm Inc' device. Having said that - it is possibly a fake, its just that you can't make that assumption based on the 'Palm would never do this' argument.

RE: Phone?
terrysalmi @ 11/13/2002 4:32:52 PM #
Didn't people also say the Oslo was fake when it had basically the same circumstances?

Kappa Sigma Fraternity - Founded 1400 A.D.

The Star and Crescent shall not be worn by every man, but only by him who is worthy to wear it...

RE: Phone?
Token User @ 11/13/2002 5:24:12 PM #
No,no,no - read the article. It said 'licensee' - a Palm OS device NOT a 'Palm Inc' device.

Getting picky, but Palm Inc is a licensee of the PalmOS, just as Handspring, Kyocera, and Samsung are (sorry - just listed the "known" smartphone licensees). Makes you wonder how many unknown ones there are - Sendo?

~ "Don't be too proud of this technological terror you've constructed." - DV ~

RE: Phone?
I.M Anonymous @ 11/13/2002 6:22:06 PM #
I don't think it's a phone. My Palm V has a button with a picture of a phone on it, but it has no voice capability. I think this is just the addressbook button for the 21st century.

RE: Phone?
I.M Anonymous @ 11/13/2002 7:14:46 PM #
Nevermind. I just saw that it also has a corded phone button. Oops!

RE: Phone?
Liam @ 11/13/2002 7:27:16 PM #
It's amazing how fast my reply to big raji was taken off. Let me restate! This is not a political forum. Trashing Bush is not appropriate. Deleting my previous post borders on communism.

Since Edís departure this site has become rather weak.

My .02 in Ď02

RE: Phone?
rsc1000 @ 11/13/2002 7:50:22 PM #
Get over it Liam - its his signature. Stick with the topic.

RE: Phone?
Admin @ 11/14/2002 10:24:15 AM #
Liam: you are welcome to post whatever you want as long as it's on topic and contributes constructively to a thread. Your post borders on McCarthy-ism. That is also Raj's sig, and it is acceptable by me.

I reserve the right to edit/delete any post in my TOS.


burnkit @ 11/13/2002 1:46:29 PM #
No sir, I don't like it.
It looks like a tablet PC designed by 4th graders.
RE: yucky
graph @ 11/13/2002 2:05:57 PM #
camera is nice. esp it wont be flipping like the nx

RE: yucky
cyn @ 11/13/2002 2:24:22 PM #
definately just some CAD mockup - whether it'll be a real product or whether it was just a 'fanboy' has yet to be seen.

That said, it needs work either way IMO :)

RE: yucky
sralmas @ 11/13/2002 2:54:23 PM #
I like it. I hope it is an OS5 with virtual graffiti, no phone, built in camera and either wifi or BT (or both).

RE: yucky
IanJD @ 11/13/2002 6:39:17 PM #
"camera is nice. esp it wont be flipping like the nx"

Why not; the camera mount looks as though it rotates, possibly more than the NX since it's restricted by the CF blister.

Who needs a SmartPhone

KeareB @ 11/13/2002 2:09:16 PM #
Now that I have used a Palm T|T, a bluetooth phone (T68i), and a bluetooth headset, I would never want an all-in-one SmartPhone.

With them combined, it IS a SmartPhone. But, when I want to scale it down (e.g., I go biking, or at night), I can just take the tiny T68i.

RE: Who needs a SmartPhone
JPVann @ 11/13/2002 3:27:10 PM #
What Bluetooth headset are you using and how well does it work. Oh yeah, is it in the realm of 'affordable'?

Jer 23:29
RE: Who needs a SmartPhone
fleegle @ 11/13/2002 5:05:31 PM #
I don't know what you consider affordable, but, Jabra sells a Bluetooth headset. It's called the FreeSpeak. It costs around $100.

RE: Who needs a SmartPhone
pen_n_paper @ 11/14/2002 12:34:31 AM #
I do! :)
The Tugsten T is pricey but looking at this "beta" makes me want to get it.

Join my Forums 1rst to get a 100 posts gets to be a moderator hehe :)

Bad fake

mikecane @ 11/13/2002 2:40:46 PM #
Let me be the first to cry "Fake!"

No part of that alleged design makes any sense. Looks like some poor college student's submission for a design final. I'd give it an F-.

RE: Bad fake
Ba-gug @ 11/13/2002 2:52:11 PM #
Ah, isn't that what was said when the first photos of Oslo, I mean TT appeared. I hope it is a fake cause it sure is a ugly critter.

Please buy Palm stuff, I want my stock to go back up so I can sell it!
RE: Bad fake
Moosecat @ 11/13/2002 2:54:45 PM #
I agree. It doesn't look very realistic to me, and the design is really crappy. What's with the shape of the buttons?

And as for the "microphone" (and it isn't at all clear to me that's what it is), why would it be on the right side of the phone? Holding the "phone" to one's right ear would cause the user to stick the left lower corner up in the air. That doesn't make sense. The microphone would be on the left.

I think someone had fun in Photoshop.

Bad fake indeed
Rok @ 11/13/2002 4:27:47 PM #
To me this looks like a twenty-minute Photoshop job, crossing the old Handspring (Visor, anyone?) and Palm m505, minus the grafitti area ...
RE: Bad fake
mikecane @ 11/13/2002 5:09:23 PM #
Difference is, I never thought the Oslo pic was fake. This one I do think is fake.

RE: Bad fake
TobyG @ 11/14/2002 10:54:29 AM #
One noticable difference between this one and the Oslo is that the Oslo still retained the extended file information from the digital camera used to take the picture. The only extended information on this one is that it was done in Photoshop 7.0. ;)

"Never offend people with style when you can offend them with substance." - Sam Brown
RE: Bad fake
Take1 @ 11/15/2002 5:23:42 AM #
Looks like a FrankenPalm. m5xx stuck to a Symbol chasis. UGLY. Could this be a HandEra prototype? (just joking).

RE: Bad fake
masitti @ 11/16/2002 2:18:00 PM #
I can't believe anyone noticed the resolution on this thing.

It looks like it's running 1024x768. :-x

Mario Masitti
O/T Mod
I Love Tennis :)

pic of the two guys in skis...

bobes @ 11/13/2002 2:59:37 PM #
reminds me of either an advertisement or a demo movie for one of the palm OS devices from a couple of months ago. Can't recall where I saw it tho

Is it real or is it Photoshop?

robman @ 11/13/2002 3:17:56 PM #
I'm not sure, but either way a visual mockup of a device is a great way to get people talking.

Here's my thought: what if the PDA fans / Photoshop gurus among us sumbitted our own *clearly marked* fantasy PDA designs for discussion on PIC. I think it would be great free market research for Palm and would tide us over until the next device comes out. :-)

Ryan, would you consider this newsworthy enough for a front page discussion?

Palm Researcher at the University of Texas at Austin

RE: Is it real or is it Photoshop?
Admin @ 11/13/2002 4:08:33 PM #
I would be happy to host a "mock-up" PDA Photoshop article. If enough people are interested I could create a forum section for it and post the best ones on PIC.

RE: Is it real or is it Photoshop?
TedTschopp @ 11/13/2002 7:48:28 PM #
I was going to mock up a design, but I didn't have the time to finish. I was going to include

1) Television/FM Radio Tuner
Well, we know they are making so why the heck not.
2) (BeOS + Palm OS 5) like OS
Palm OS 6
3) Blue Tooth headset
Watch for some cool new Bluetooth products to hit the market over the next couple of months.
4) Full WideScreen Support (Like Sony Clie)
I love my Sony
5) Virtual Graffiti (Like Sony Clie)
I love my Sony
6) GPS
Give me this with Web Access via BlueTooth, and I'll show you killer App.
7) Get rid of Jogdial and replace with nubby mouse
I hate nubby mouse, but in the case of a handheld they make perfect sense. Also reprogram Virtual Graffiti area to act as finger mouse area.
8) Drop speakers/headphone jacks for Blue tooth wireless.
It will come with or require a bluetooth speaker/headset to output the sound. Can still include Pizo Electric speaker for small bleeps and blunders on Alarms.
9) CF Card (For Microdrive)
I think the Microdrive is the perfect drive for handhelds. Why go the way of the iPod when you can do with 1 GB on a matchbox
10) SD Card
Well, I hate Memory Sticks. Get rid of them
11) No Keyboard or other buttons other than nubby mouse and back button.
Needs room for large battery, and all input should be done via virtual graffiti area which programs you are in modify on the fly to put their own custom buttons down there.
12) Indicators
Little LEDs, and flashy things for messages, Alarms, Power, Signal Strength, Etc.
13) Ability to add on Keyboard/Game pad adaptor either = or ||
I want to be able to hook the keyboard/Game Pad up either vertically or horizontally.
14) Vibrator ability like Pager/Cell Phone
When an alarm goes off I want the thing to bounce off my desk. I want bells and wistles. I Want the thing to send on MP3 to my bluetooth headset. I want the alarm to send a message to my cell phone.

Ted Tschopp

RE: Is it real or is it Photoshop?
arielb @ 11/14/2002 1:06:30 AM #
what's the point of a tv tuner if I can't watch cable such as Fox News or CNBC?

RE: Is it real or is it Photoshop?
ronlach @ 11/14/2002 8:17:49 AM #
Ah, so we also need satelite TV capability as well.


Thunderball @ 11/13/2002 3:55:31 PM #
Protect what innocents? You mean you blurred the LG logo? (Filename gave it away in that case...)

RE: Eh...
Thunderball @ 11/13/2002 3:56:38 PM #
..or LG could also mean Large... haha, silly me.

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