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Latest Round of Palm is for Sale Rumors

Amidst mounting speculation of a looming Palm sale, there has also been quite a bit of chatter focusing on Dell’s recent elimination of the Axim PDA line. Now reports are swirling that Dell wants to enter the lucrative smartphone market. Dell has recently hired Ron Garriques, formerly the head of mobile devices at Motorola, to spearhead new efforts in consumer products. Linked to these recent rumblings is a new rumor that the cash-rich Dell could be a possible suitor for Palm. Acquiring Palm would give Dell immediate access to Palm’s existing wireless carrier contracts worldwide, a solid retail distribution channel and a decade-old brand (“Palm”) along with the newer, arguably more recognizable “Treo” branding.

Possibly spawning directly from the above rumors, as this article in The Independent claims, Palm executives have supposedly seen the writing on the wall brought about by the announcement of the Apple iPhone and are looking to unload the company prior to the iPhone’s June launch. Morgan Stanley is reportedly assisting Palm to assess the company’s options while a buyer is sought. The article also goes on to claim Palm has a current market capitalization of approximately USD $2 billion. The usual list of suspects (Nokia and a private-equity firm) is again mentioned concurrently with Palm seeking a buyer. As usual, Palm has refused comment, aside from the recent interview comments by Hawkins that there isn't a shred of fact to these sorts of Wall Street rumors.

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Did you see the article in Digitimes about...

SeldomVisitor @ 3/6/2007 5:02:59 PM # Q
...DELL contracting with HTC?

RE: Did you see the article in Digitimes about...
hkklife @ 3/6/2007 5:32:47 PM # Q
Yup I saw that but didn't want the news item to spiral into a mish mash of reports from all over the web.

Astute readers/follwers of the "biz" can (hopefully) draw all of the connections between these various bits for themselves ;-)

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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Palm sale: WTF?!

mikecane @ 3/6/2007 5:04:08 PM # Q
>>>Palm executives have supposedly seen the writing on the wall brought about by the announcement of the Apple iPhone and are looking to unload the company prior to the iPhone’s June launch.

Ho! If that is indeed true, all the iPhone critics better STFU!

But really, it's Google that worries me -- and should worry Palm:
Is Google Gonna Rock The World?
http://mikecane.wordpress.com/2007/03/06/is-google-gonna-rock-the-world/

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
twrock @ 3/6/2007 7:27:40 PM # Q
If that quote is true (about the effect of seeing the iPhone on Palm execs), I'd think it was more of a case of "not another one!" than "now we finally have something to worry about." It's a compounding problem for Palm, just too much competition for a small company to keep trying to stay at the leading edge.


Thinking about Vista? Think again: http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/~pgut001/pubs/vista_cost.txt
Want an alternative? Try this: http://www.ubuntu.com/

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
PacManFoo @ 3/6/2007 8:32:43 PM # Q
Seen this?

Speaking at a technology conference in San Francisco, Google CEO Eric Schmidt confirmed that his company is collaborating with Apple Inc. on several more projects. His comments were in response to a question about rumors that the companies are co-developing a tablet-style computer, according to MarketWatch.

Mr. Schmidt neither confirmed or denied that an Apple/Google tablet computer is in the works. He did, however, state that the two companies are "doing more and more things together. We have similar goals, similar competitors."

Google's search and map functions will be included in Apple's new iPhone - a combination iPod and smart phone - that will be released in June. Neither company has commented on whether or not those functions will work the same as they do on other smart phones, or if there will be additional or enhanced features.

What other projects the Apple and Google are working on together remains to be seen.

PDA's Past and Present:
Palm - IIIxe, Vx, M500, M505, Tungsten T, TX
Handspring - Edge, Platinum, Deluxe
Sony - SJ22
Apple - MP2000, MP2100

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
rsc1000 @ 3/7/2007 1:29:42 AM # Q
>>>Palm executives have supposedly seen the writing on the wall brought about by the announcement of the Apple iPhone and are looking to unload the company prior to the iPhone’s June launch.

Sure - but hasn't this kind of situation been the case for 5 or 6 years now? If i had a nickel for every time somebody on PIC alone (VOR are you listening??) stated that Palm was in it's death thows, i'd be able to buy them myself. Hawkins is at least 60% right in his recent interview: Palm is making $$$ and has more control over it's detiny then it has had in 5 years. Maybe Dell (or somebody) is going to buy Palm. But until we see the agreement, this is just another rumour. If they do sell its not from a position of complete weakness by any means. No matter how ticked off fan-boys are (myself included) by certain moves, Palm has been doing OK in general from a biz perspectfive for the last couple of years.

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
freakout @ 3/7/2007 2:11:53 AM # Q
A buyout could be a good thing for Palm, depending on the buyer. It would bring some needed financial muscle to the company that would give them the freedom to experiment with new devices, without having to fear killing the goose that laid the golden egg.
RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/7/2007 7:02:11 AM # Q
Are you sure you're not talking about Handspring?

Deja vu...

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
mikecane @ 3/7/2007 12:29:49 PM # Q
I don't see any advantages to Palm selling out -- except for the execs who hold stock to get some sort of fat payday. Where are the bloody advantages? They suffered under USR and was it Cisco? (God, how could I forget?!) Why would they want to return to that -- especially since they are making money?

If they do indeed see the iPhone as The Fatal Blow, then it's a case of rats deserting a sinking sink -- one which the rats themselves gnawed the holes in! They can't claim the iPhone as an iceberg when they've pissed away at least 5 years.

Get those ebay bids in now to secure your caches!

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
InsGuy @ 3/7/2007 2:07:22 PM # Q
I for one am going to look seriously at the iphone. Like Mike said, they've pissed away 5 years, so what do they expect from people? I DO NOT think, however, that anyone will buy Palm. From a business standpoint, why would another company buy a competitor with a marketshare forecast so negative? IF no one bought Palm today, what would the company look like in another 5 years? At best, the same as it does now, or at worst, it would be gone. Either way, why spend the $$$.

Of course, this is just my opinion.

All good things...

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
mikecane @ 3/8/2007 9:58:52 AM # Q
While I'm hoping the iPhone will be All That, I don't expect it to be in its 1.0 incarnation. But I have more faith in Apple getting things right than I ever will have in Palm. Are you reading this, Colligan? Bueller? Bueller? Bueller...?

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 10:19:44 AM # Q
== "...Palm executives have supposedly seen the writing on the wall
== brought about by the announcement of the Apple iPhone..."

I'm not sure I believe this anymore (I mean "as much as I ever did"...).

The strangeness w.r.t. the TREO 680 with Cingular is beginning to hint to me that the Cingular relationship might have been the last straw.

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
craigdts @ 3/8/2007 12:37:54 PM # Q
Are you suggesting Palm's relations with Cingular have soured?


RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 1:00:43 PM # Q
Maybe, yes.
RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 3:07:26 PM # Q
BTW, craigdts, there's a guy over on HowardForums who purports to be someone inside Cingular who pretty unequivocably says Cingular is not only going to carry the Crimson Treo 680, but ALL the colored TREO 680s - and he repeated that today. I have no idea if he is a reliable source w.r.t. Cingular stuff - he has 1400+ posts thus has been around awhile.

So this is a very strange situation yet again with Cingular/PALM - Cingular removes all (consumer) TREO 680s from their website today and carries everything including the kitchen sink 4 days later?

Hmmmm....

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
hkklife @ 3/8/2007 3:47:29 PM # Q
...and, fanning the flames o' speculation: Palm's not had a relationship at ALL with T-Mobile since the Treo 600 days. What if things get even more strained between Palm & Cingular? Could Palm conceivably be without a domestic GSM Treo partner?

Hmmmm. What if Palm adopts my recommended strategy from ages ago and becomes a "rogue" seller of GSM handsets, selling Treo 680s etc. unlocked at the same price or just slightly higher than what the carriers sell 'em for subsidized? People would be willing to put up with a lot of FrankenGarnet hiccups/limited battery life/VGA cameras etc. in exchange for a VERY affordable unlocked smartphone.

Add the colors to the mix and Palm could really clean up the low end of the market, leaving Cingular to test the uncertain waters of the pricey iPhone.

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

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
cervezas @ 3/8/2007 4:03:49 PM # Q
I'm able to get Treo 680s in colors from Cingular through their enterprise channel right now. I supposed it's possible that they'd only make them available to enterprise customers, but it's hard to think of a reason. As I've suggested before, this smells like baseless FUD to me.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog
RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
hkklife @ 3/8/2007 4:19:07 PM # Q
So, as of today (March 8th):

-Cingular.com has no Treo 680s of any kind availabe

-The local Cingular store (as of yesterday) no longer had their 680 on display.

So the basic possibilities are as follows:

#1 Cingular is in the process of replenishing their 680 stocks with new units (in all colors) as SV mentions the HoFo guy saying. Things will go on as usual as of next week and all of this doom & gloom is just baseless FUD (possible)

#2 Cingular is restocking a fresh batch of 680s in the new at&t branding (possible but probably too early for this to be occuring)

#3 Palm is preparing a major 680 ROM update to bring it up to speed with the upcoming 755p FrankenGarnet and Cingular is temporarily out of stock while they await factory-flashed 680s (highly unlikely)

#4 Cingular & Palm are at war and the 680 is the first casualty of the iPhone opening salvo. The 680 will no longer going to be offered by Cingular (unlikely but always a possibility)

#5 What Beersie described---no more 680s to consumers but they will still be offered through the enterprise channel for the forseeable future (unlikely but it's always possible)



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

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 4:30:11 PM # Q
> I'm able to get Treo 680s in colors from Cingular through their
> enterprise channel right now. I supposed it's possible that
> they'd only make them available to enterprise customers, but
> it's hard to think of a reason.

The "enterprise channel" is not, AFAIK, a web-based interaction but a phone call to someone who arranges the sale and for the devices to be shipped to the customer.

From an unknown-to-us source.

That is, being able to get colored TREO 680s from the "enterprise channel" could EASILY just be confirming what we already know - Cingular-branded TREO 680s of all colors are available from PALM.

=======

I have NO IDEA why Cingular has removed TREO 680s from their consumer web site and have yet to read anything that BEGINS to explain this if Cingular is indeed about to START selling all colors. But if you want to bulk-order them as an enterprise then that's fine with Cingular and PALM and they'll get them to you one way or another (according to the CFO's latest presentation =ALL= enterprise sales are performed by the carriers' sales forces (with PALM fulfilling the order?)).

It's just weird.

As an admitted PALM-pessimist I would think this consumer-site removal suggests there is something SERIOUSLY wrong between Cingular and PALM.

But I'm an admitted PALM-pessimist.

So what's YOUR (for all "YOU") explanation!?

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 4:38:33 PM # Q
> ...Cingular.com has no Treo 680s of any kind availabe...

Almost - the TREO 680 - all colors - has been removed from Cingular.com's consumer web pages - as noted a couple posts above you can go to the business pages and see them but need to call someone to order.

Cingular is now AT&T
cervezas @ 3/8/2007 4:39:11 PM # Q
So the basic possibilities are as follows: #1... #2... #3... #4... #5....

... or possibly the most obvious option:

#6 Since Cingular is now AT&T, the pause in availability is the time between the exhaustion of the supply of Cingular branded Treos and the channel filling with AT&T branded Treo 680s. You think AT&T is spending all this money on advertising the transition and wouldn't make sure their logo isn't displaying on their spiffy new color Treos?

"Cingular and Palm are at war." You guys are too much!

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

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 4:55:51 PM # Q
I can live with that explanation - perhaps.

But..you know...wouldn't this suggest all the OTHER PDA-phones here:

-- http://www.cingular.com/cell-phone-service/cell-phones/pda-phones-smartphones.jsp

need to be rebranded, too?

Giggle.

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 5:42:18 PM # Q
The HowardsForum person just repeted teh "rebranding" words.


RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
cervezas @ 3/8/2007 6:45:05 PM # Q
wouldn't this suggest all the OTHER PDA-phones... need to be rebranded, too?

Presumably it would be the same situation for any phone during the transition. When they run out of the old Cingular-badged stock and place a new order from the ODM they'll have them use the new badging on it.

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

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
hkklife @ 3/8/2007 11:14:02 PM # Q
Uhhh, David.....my #2 scenario is precisely what you listed as your #6. They're out of the old 'uns and awaiting the new 'uns.

The same thing happened on the tail end of the Treo 650...a handful made it out branded as "Palm" units (starting with the Black Tie 650) prior to it being EOL'd--think between summer and fall '06.

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

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
craigdts @ 3/8/2007 11:58:18 PM # Q
Either way it does not bode well for palm - this hiccup in supply should hurt them. Doubt it has anything to do with rebranding. More likely sounds like a supply issue where business users get priority, much like when a new phone is launched. It would be tough on palm to lose sales because they say "cingular" instead of "ATT." That can't make palm happy with cingular.

It's baaaaaack!
SeldomVisitor @ 3/9/2007 6:17:34 AM # Q
Not crimson, though - still have to wait for that one.

Unfortunately, no good reason for its disappearance has cropped up. It simply went and came!

RE: Palm sale: WTF?!
cervezas @ 3/9/2007 12:24:31 PM # Q
Uhhh, David.....my #2 scenario is precisely what you listed as your #6. They're out of the old 'uns and awaiting the new 'uns.

Sorry, Kris. I guess I had a flare-up of my NIH Syndrome. ;-)

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

Seeing red...or not
SeldomVisitor @ 3/12/2007 7:22:19 AM # Q
A PR-fluff has been released by ATT/Cingular about red pearls and 680s. I was unable (at the time of this post) to find them on the cingular website by drilling down from the top, however.

Following the links in the PR-fluff also was nonproductive.

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If dell buys Palm...

t3h @ 3/6/2007 6:04:46 PM # Q
I'm out of here. Seriously.

Palm TX + 1GB SD + Motorola v3x = awesomeness
RE: If dell buys Palm...
cervezas @ 3/7/2007 12:47:19 PM # Q
I think I'm with you on that. It would be a total fiasco, IMO.

David Beers
Pikesoft Mobile Computing
www.pikesoft.com/blog
RE: If dell buys Palm...
Gekko @ 3/7/2007 3:07:23 PM # Q

No other technology company listens to customers, collaborates with partners, adds its own significant layer of innovation and delivers relevant technology more efficiently and effectively than Dell. They provide what their customers want to buy and that's their business model.

The last year was relatively challenging for Dell, but they still made a few billion dollars. Nothing to be too ashamed about.



RE: If dell buys Palm...
just_little_me @ 3/7/2007 4:24:13 PM # Q
and out come the Dell fanboys... :-P


JLM.

RE: If dell buys Palm...
mikecane @ 3/7/2007 5:14:32 PM # Q
>>>and out come the Dell fanboys... :-P

Him? Ha! More likely a shareholder looking for some Pump&Dump action.

So why didn't you ever buy an Axim, Gek?

RE: If dell buys Palm...
sungod @ 3/8/2007 1:00:36 AM # Q
If Dell gave two hoots about what their customers wanted or needed, they might think about explaining to them that the only way to buy cartridges for the POS printer they just upsold them, is off their website.
I've lost track of how many people I've turned away because they need cartridges for those rebadged Lexmarks they are floging and have now idea you can't buy them retail.

How good are cargo pants, they're a gadget lovers best friend.
Printer cartidges - the heroin of the computer age
SeldomVisitor @ 3/8/2007 5:18:08 AM # Q
Whatta racket!

And that's no kidding.

Printer cartridges
mikecane @ 3/8/2007 9:58:02 AM # Q
Printer cartridges redefine the word "gouge."

RE: If dell buys Palm...
hkklife @ 3/8/2007 1:34:34 PM # Q
Printers *in general* redefine the word "gouge"

Case in point:

Between work & home I have to deal with probably 8 or 9 printers. They are a mix of inkjet, color laser & mono laser (with one multifunction inkjet and one Epson 4x6 photo printer).

The printers are a mix of Canon, Brother, Lexmark and HP.

Out of all of those, all of which have been purchaed within the past two years, only two have a Vista driver currently available for download. The others either at best have the lame built-in Vista driver that's horrible crippled & feature-limited. The others simply don't work at all with Vista (even trying to use the XP drivers is a no-go). The HP website promises a driver to be available "soon" for the Color Laserjet, but, much like Palm's Vista support plans, I have a feeling that's going to be a no-go.



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

RE: If dell buys Palm...
Tech72 @ 3/11/2007 12:09:30 AM # Q
RE: If dell buys Palm...
twrock @ 3/12/2007 8:51:03 AM # Q
why mess with vista.....

Yep. And someday in the not too distant future everyone will be crying about how the big media companies have got us all locked up so tight that we can't listen/watch our legitimately purchase music/videos in some legitimate way because of the consequences of Vista forcing DRM to be built into every minor piece of hardware. And people will wonder how it ever came to this. And some of us will be able to say, "I told you so." But there won't be any satisfaction in saying it, because we will have all been forced into it right along with all those "sheep" who followed MS so naively.

(There, I feel so much better..., not.)


Thinking about Vista? Think again: http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/~pgut001/pubs/vista_cost.txt
Want an alternative? Try this: http://www.ubuntu.com/

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