Run Palm OS Applications on a Pocket PC

StyleTap has announced the availability of StyleTap Platform for Windows Mobile based Pocket PCs. This exciting new product allows most applications originally written for Palm OS handhelds to run on Windows Mobile-based PDAs.

StyleTap can run many of the thousands of third-party applications written for Palm OS Garnet v5.2 (and earlier) devices. Palm OS Applications appear and operate on a Pocket PC just like native Windows Mobile-based programs. You can even cut and paste between Palm OS-based applications and native Windows Mobile-based applications on the same handheld device.

StyleTap also incorporates unique backwards compatibility features to fully support older applications as well. One such feature allows both newer and older game applications to perform direct screen updates. The product also includes the StyleTap Application Installer, which allows you to easily install third-party Palm OS-based applications from your desktop Windows system onto your handheld.

The products does have some limitations on what Palm OS programs it can run. For instance, no conduits or "hacks" are supported, Bluetooth will not work and any application that directly manipulates Motorola 68000 hardware registers is not supported. However, direct screen writes are supported.

"With this product, users who decide to migrate from a Palm OS® device can keep running their favorite applications. And for the first time, existing Windows Mobile™ PDA users can access the vast array of popular, proven Palm OS® applications," said Gregory Sokoloff, CEO and co-founder of StyleTap Inc. "This is the first of a family of StyleTap™ Platform products that will extend this capability to other handheld operating systems such as Symbian OS™. StyleTap™ Platform is based on the idea that the same application software should run on many different kinds of handhelds, regardless of operating system. This not only benefits handheld users, but also allows developers to target a much larger customer base."

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Haven't tried it myself, but...

AdamaDBrown @ 4/28/2005 1:52:31 PM # Q
I'm told that it works best if you use a VGA PocketPC, and set the display size to 66%. According to the developer and some users, if you try to scale the apps up to full-screen 480 pixels, instead of a 320 pixel width, it can cause some issues.

RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
Frenchie @ 4/28/2005 2:13:52 PM # Q
Interesting, I'm curious how PalmSource will take this.

The world will end in 2006. Just as it was predicted in the bible along with the release of Microsoft Longhorn.... :p
RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
LiveFaith @ 4/28/2005 2:32:41 PM # Q

I know that I've wondered for a few years now, when this might happen. When PPC was running 200mhz Strong ARMs and POS was only at 33mhz it seemed obvious to have an emulator.

I'm not tekky enough to know HOW, but POS apps are resource friendly and most PPCs have heavy duty feature sets, so the marriage looks very possible.

Looks like they'll have a lot of display mapping issues (aka the QVGA HE330), but with higher rez screens, even this is more reasonable. This is certainly not a complete overthrow, but it does nothing to help PSRC, when one of your number one selling points is being chipped away at.

Pat Horne;

RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
kpr @ 4/28/2005 5:31:59 PM # Q
[QUOTE]Coming to Other Platforms

StyleTap intends to release versions of this application for other mobile platforms, including the Symbian OS.

"StyleTap Platform is based on the idea that the same application software should run on many different kinds of handhelds, regardless of operating system," said Sokoloff. "This not only benefits handheld users, but also allows developers to target a much larger customer base."[/QUOTE]

I'd like to see a Mac version of StyleTap, since currently there is no Mac version of the Palm OS Simulator, and the Palm OS Emulator for the Mac only supports up to Palm OS 4.

Also, does anyone know if it can run Sony Palm apps?

Can anyone give a list of Palm apps that work well?

RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
LiveFaith @ 4/28/2005 6:06:41 PM # Q
A friend of mine tested these today and said they worked:

iPaq PPC2002 i think:

Minesweeper ... works
Diddlebug ... works, but a little "slow"
BikeorDie ... works great

... looks about like whatever runs thru PACE on OS5 will generally work.

... apparently runs in a nice "window" to accomadate screen rez. He even said that PPC text entry works to the POS app! Cool.

Pat Horne;

RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
AdamaDBrown @ 4/28/2005 6:42:26 PM # Q
Now the disenfranchised can have Grafitti 1 again.

RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
LiveFaith @ 4/28/2005 11:57:02 PM # Q
How is that? G1 is not the official text library for WMob is it?

Pat Horne;
RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
wannitnow @ 4/29/2005 1:45:18 AM # Q
I using a Dell Axim now and the best text entry method is "Block Recognizer" which is basically G1.

RE: Haven't tried it myself, but...
AdamaDBrown @ 4/29/2005 2:40:17 AM # Q
Right, PPCs come with three text inputs: Block Recognizer, which is virtual Grafitti, Transcriber, which is handwriting recognition (cursive, print, and mixed), and a soft keyboard.

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It works great @ 4/28/2005 2:41:21 PM # Q
I have nothing to do with this company but, amazingly, the platform works great and does everthing it promises. I was able to get all of the medical apps to run on an ancient iPAQ from 1999 and it worked about as fast as a Palm III.

This is an enormous break for medical PDA users since many niche medical tools are developed by hobbyists like myself and are, therefore, only written for Palm OS. If you have a Pocket PC, you should get it while you can just in case it gets pulled for legal issues.

RE: It works great
Surur @ 4/28/2005 3:08:05 PM # Q

Interesting. Is there a list of great Palm OS software which dont already have pocketpc analogues. Medical software obviously comes to mind, but most software which are under active development are now being made for both platforms. Anything else ?

RE: It works great @ 4/28/2005 3:46:16 PM # Q
There are a ton of niche applications, developed by hobbyists, that are not ported to Pocket PC simply because the guy who wrote the software doesn't use a Pocket PC. 80% of my software is freeware so it's not like I'm going to make a big effort to develop free software for a PDA that I don't use. I'd rather spend time developing new tools for the PDA that I do use.

ePocrates is, by far, the most popular PDA medical tool. The primary tool is available for both platforms, however, there are a host of add-on applications that are only available for Palm OS.

RE: It works great
Surur @ 4/28/2005 4:36:09 PM # Q
I've had a look at your home page. Your software seems ideal for use with this emulator. Have you tried to run it yet?


Save your money
InsGuy @ 4/28/2005 4:47:32 PM # Q
I just downloaded it and it installed fine; and then wouldn't run a SINGLE Palm program. Save your money; isnt' worth the $29.95 IMHO.

All good things...
RE: It works great @ 4/28/2005 4:48:20 PM # Q
They all work. Even the TealInfo folios, saved preference databases, registration algorithms, and direct-to-screen drawing. Apparently, you can even beam contacts and databases/applications from Palm OS to a Pocket PC device. Truly amazing.

RE: It works great
InsGuy @ 4/28/2005 5:34:17 PM # Q
I now stand corrected. I decided that the potential of this program was too great, so I just called StyleTap, and a tech support guy walked me through a couple issues. Yes, this program does work very well. I have an X50v, and now can run my POS programs on there as well. I wish this program would've come along back when I changed over to PPC, as I ended up buying the PPC version to a lot of my programs that I had on my old palm. Oh well, at least I can advise others who are changing over to PPC about this program.

All good things...
Reply to this comment

Doomsayers rejoice

orev @ 4/28/2005 3:03:10 PM # Q
I hate the people who are always saying, "Palm will die!", but sadly, I really think this could be a fatal blow. All of the hardware PalmOS runs on is just crap these days, when compared to the PPCs like a Dell Axim. Palm has been holding back thier hardware for too long, and it's really biting them. I still have an original TT, and there's really nothing compelling me to upgrade.

I love my Palm and I have for a long time, and even though I have an Axim, I still use the Palm day to day. However, when I bought the Axim I was completely blown away by how great it is. VGA screen, wifi, BT, plenty of ram. It's only downfall was that it runs Windows, which really, really sucks. Right away I started looking for something to let me run my Palm apps on it.

This software finally fills that void. I would be very surprised if MS doesn't start shipping this an add-on to Windows Mobile.

Palm had better release some killer PDA really soon, I'm talking wifi, vga, bt, and no stupid gimmicks like a slider case. Yeah, a 4GB hard drive might be fun, but it doesn't make it stand out when compared to full multimedia capabilities of the current PPCs.

RE: Doomsayers rejoice
InsGuy @ 4/28/2005 5:37:42 PM # Q
I would have to agree that this could mean some serious trouble for Palm. In addition, while there were no 'killer palm pdas' for me to even think about changing from my Axim before, this program helps me make sure I stay a PPC user. It is also a very compelling reason for many people who like the PPC hardware and features to now change, especially since they can run POS programs.

All good things...
RE: Doomsayers rejoice - NOT
jbeedham @ 5/20/2005 2:16:09 AM # Q
I disagree. Having an emulator out there goes to show you that Palm OS is still the dominant handheld OS. Case in point, Windows emulators have been around for years for Macintosh and Linux. Guess which desktop os is still dominant? Windows!

See? Palm OS is here to stay!!!

Proud owner of a Sony TJ-37!

Reply to this comment

The end of palm os?

tfftruoa @ 4/28/2005 3:21:43 PM # Q
OMFG!!! This is totally the end of palm os. Now that people can run all their favorite and wonderful pam os programs on pocket pc, palm os will vanish into nothingness just like when Microsoft imploded after Virtual PC for Mac was released!!!!

CCCP: Creative Commonists for Copyleft Protection
RE: The end of palm os? @ 4/28/2005 4:13:35 PM # Q
That's a funny thing to say given that the software that we are talking about is written in Palm OS. If I, as a software developer, can reach both platforms with Palm OS, don't you think I would rather just do that? I think I just stopped development on the Pocket PC version(s) of my software.

Is Palm OS now the universal PDA development platform?

RE: The end of palm os?
james_sorenson @ 4/28/2005 5:21:36 PM # Q
Sarcasm....please note the bucket-loads of sarcasm in the first post,

Palm emulator on PocketPC is equivalent to:
Windows Emulator on Macintosh.

Palm won't be hurting any more than Windows is.

My question is this: is this a hardware emulator with a copy of the PalmOS included? If so, then this app will definitely be shutdown for handing out free, unlicensed copies of the PalmOS.

If it is truly just a reverse engineering from the applications, then it will be a gray area. Those cases are won by those with the most expensive lawyers.

- Jim

James Sorenson

RE: The end of palm os?
LiveFaith @ 4/28/2005 6:16:01 PM # Q
Good comments, but I can hear the sales guy at Best Buy now ...

Oh, get the iPaq, because it will run all the Palm apps with an add on emulator anyway. :-)

Pat Horne;

RE: The end of palm os?
AdamaDBrown @ 4/28/2005 6:46:15 PM # Q
Developers aren't what should worry you, users are. Think of the number of people who stick with Palm OS units, despite the superior hardware of PocketPCs, because Palm is what they're comfortable with. Likewise, as Pat says, one more reason for the salesdrones to point new users to PocketPCs.

Just the other day I was looking for something like this for someone--he's always used Palm, but his m505 is flaking out (digitizer issues) and a new PocketPC would be a lot cheaper for him than a new Palm. This way, he could keep his existing interface while switching up to better hardware.

RE: The end of palm os?
neuron @ 4/28/2005 10:47:17 PM # Q
It won't run all POS apps. I tried a few, 95% are good, even better than OS5 which runs less than 70% of previous versions.

All language apps won't run. Some multimedia programs won't run either. But for me, it is enough. The POS bugme, listpro in styletap are much faster than PPC bugme and listpro, although not as beautiful as in PPC, which I need a VGA device to take advantage.

RE: The end of palm os?
WareW01f @ 5/5/2005 6:59:35 PM # Q
Emulator yes, slower? Doesn't have to be. For those of you that aren't aware, after the T|T line, most all of your apps are already running in an emulator already. That's what PACE *is*. Now granted not all of it is in PACE (depending on the app) but there should really be no difference in speed, unless of course their code is slower than the native PalmOS code. To be frank, you could probably do the same thing on a Palm running WinCE apps (don't see a huge demand for this though). Still I'd use the WINE in Linux example before the Virtual PC example (which by the way MicroSoft BOUGHT to make sure it was never a real threat.)

If you're in a market with mixed devices, you still code 68k as there is little sense in cutting out most of your market. (Or user base in my case) now, granted with the Zire's now moving to ARM chips as well, this may change. I'm still amazed at how long the Palm III held on. (Back then the question was color or not, ha!) You can bet those 505s and 515s will be around as long. (The T|T however is a piece of **** and they just keep getting cheaper. My Palm III survived many a drop from shirt pocket height, the T|T didn't make the first!)

As someone in a company that develops our own software internally I'm all over this. If we can get out of having to code for WinCE (which is a minority of users) and just give them this and our existing Palm apps... score! Hell I'd even tweak the Palm apps make them run better if needed.

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Imitation is the best form of flattery

jeg815 @ 4/28/2005 4:14:10 PM # Q
Imitation is the best form of flattery....

RE: Imitation is the best form of flattery
RhinoSteve @ 4/28/2005 7:58:08 PM # Q
You have that right. Market history has shown that whatever an emulator emulates is being promoted. This is no problem in my hands. While you can run your Palm OS apps on Pocket PCs now, these new users will start to wonder why just get the real thing instead of an emulator.

While the sewing circle ninnies that predominate their opinions on this site will call this a fatal blow for the Palm OS, I view this as just the opposite.

Then there is HotSync / ActiveSynce issues! LOL!

RE: Imitation is the best form of flattery
LiveFaith @ 5/1/2005 3:12:36 PM # Q

My first genuine laugh of the day! Thanks

Pat Horne;

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Things Are Heating Up

sford @ 4/28/2005 4:19:37 PM # Q
I've watched this Palm vs PPC war rage for years now. I have never feared PPC winning. (As you can see by my sig, I'm a super Palm advocate.)

This, however, does make things interesting. Obviously, the bugs will have to be worked out (e.g., resolution and support of all major apps, wireless tech, and games). Since it seems that software is POS's strong suit and hardware is PPC's, however, there is no denying this will give PPCs a big advantage a revision or two down the road.

Bottom line: as a consumer, this just makes things really exciting. Can't wait to see how the battle progresses from here!

Pilot Pro -> III -> IIIe -> Nino (yeah...oops!) -> IIIc -> VIIx -> m505 -> NR70V -> NZ90 -> NX60 -> T3 -> Zire 72s

RE: Things Are Heating Up
LiveFaith @ 4/28/2005 6:18:14 PM # Q
I hear that BikeOrDie worx flawlessly. Hmmmm.

Pat Horne;
zire 72 "upgrade"?
ackmondual @ 4/29/2005 4:40:58 PM # Q

Did your T3 die or did you actually "upgrade" from that to a z72?

[signature0]the secret to enjoying your job is to have a hobby that's even worse[/signature0]
[signature1]My PDAs: Visor --> Visor Neo (blue) --> Zire 71 --> Tungsten T3[/signature1]

RE: Things Are Heating Up
sford @ 4/30/2005 4:07:05 PM # Q

It died. :(

In replacing it, I decided that with my new baby I'd rather have the camera at hand than the slider. :)

And it was much cheaper, which is *always* good for my marriage. :)

Pilot Pro -> III -> IIIe -> Nino (yeah...oops!) -> IIIc -> VIIx -> m505 -> NR70V -> NZ90 -> NX60 -> T3 -> Zire 72s

RE: Things Are Heating Up
neilmitchell @ 4/30/2005 4:20:14 PM # Q
I too had an "almost" dead T3. I LOVED it and have had it since the first T3's hit the market. The battery life is now awful and the dreaded digitizer drift if frustrating as hell. It also now has the habbit of tuning itself off while using it. So...I bought an E2 as a downgrade (I don't like the T5 - way too expensive for what it is and the rumored T|X is too physically big for me). However, E2 build quality is not great and it has a FIND bug that returns the first 8 contacts (after searching other databases fine) and then when you "FIND MORE" it starts searching from the start of the contacts database again and returns the same 8. I have an RMA arriving shortly to send it back and I will use my T3 despite it's problems.

The only quetion now is:
a) Pay $25/$50 for a reconditioned T3 after fighting through PalmOne's awful tech support, or
b) Buy the brick when it comes out (T|X)
c) Buy a compromised T5
d) Jump to the dark side: HP or Dell with WiFi?


Atari-Portolio > HP95LX > HP100LX > HP300LX > HP320LX > Nino300 > Nino500 > HP620LX > Jornada680 > PalmV > Vx > m505 > T|T > T615C > T|T3 > T|E2 > (back to) T|T3

RE: Things Are Heating Up
hkklife @ 5/2/2005 10:22:08 AM # Q
Refurb T3 if you need one immediately. Otherwise, wait for the official T|X launch and see HOW brickish it is and what the early adopters have to say about it.

RE: Things Are Heating Up
ackmondual @ 5/5/2005 1:05:19 AM # Q

Sorry to hear that :(

no chance of getting a new T3 anywhere? Even a used one on Ebay or do u only accept brand new?

I notice my T3 turns itself off sometimes. At first i thought that's b/c the apps i use (all games so far in where it has hppened), may have been implemented in where button presses don't register as presses, so the system auto-offs. I tried this on my z71 and it turns out that this isn't the case. My T3 seems to be aging as well.

If my T3 were to die... I'd have the following choices in order of preference:

1) get a zod2. They're only $265 at compUplus, so it's a nice deal for all the specs it has

2) find a replacement T3. I'd be very wary of Ebay used models, so i'd likely have to be new which will not likely happen

3) get a PPC. Most likely a x50v. VGA, all that WL crap i won't need but nice to know it's there, PPC now has alot of neat freeware choices, better gaming zone, and a change to try out WM05.

4) use my old z71. I'ts in nice condition, but i've been spoiled by the T3's hi-res+ screen that it's hard for me to go back

5) get another P1 model, but none of them appeal to me. I still don't need wifi+BT, nor the microdrive. I hear it's only gonna be as thick as 1.5 T3s, but that still wouldn't concern me anyways.

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Runs all Palm OS applications, eh?

Chankla @ 4/28/2005 5:13:41 PM # Q
Someone needs to port this to the Treo 650 ;)

RE: Runs all Palm OS applications, eh?
skeezix @ 4/28/2005 5:39:18 PM # Q
*snort* *pop all over keyboard* *grin*

Thats pretty evil of you :)

For the record, Shadow Plan seams to work pretty well under StyleTap..


The Shadow knows!

It crashes on my Tungsten 5 and Treo 650. ;-O
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/28/2005 10:09:04 PM # Q
Maybe if someone comes up with an app to emulate PPC on PalmOS you could then load STP to emulate PalmOS on your Treo 650.

Emulated PalmOS on emulated Windows on buggy PalmOS... Rube Goldberg FrankenPalm™ arise! Mmmmmmm... Nagels's brains... Yummy...

Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

Say hello to my little friend...

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Oh C'mon Palm OS, don't die...

vonfefer @ 4/28/2005 7:01:44 PM # Q
Hope it's not the end of it... But we could emulate their ppc programs onto our Palm os devices too... Developers were are you???

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