Funambol Launching New MobileWe Portal
Correction: The new Funambol portal will not support the Palm Pre - at least, not from the outset. Kim has sent us a new statement this morning, apologising for the error:
I'm afraid I was mistaken, and Funambol v8 (launching tomorrow) will not, in fact, support the Pre. The official statement is: "Funambol has an established relationship with Palm and is unable to share any details at this time." However, Funambol does support a number of Palm Treo devices.
Shame, but given that Funambol is open-source and there is an "established relationship" with Palm, your correspondent feels confident speculating that an official announcement of webOS support can't be far away. Our original article is published after the break.
Original article: Funambol first came to our attention as a potential partner in Precrime back in late August, when AOL tweeted that they were working with the open-source cloud-sync service to bring AOL Mail support to the Palm Pre. At the time, all that they could tell us officially was that "Funambol has an established relationship with Palm and is unable to share any details at this time." It seems now that we were scraping along the tip of a much larger iceberg.
Funambol spokesperson Kim Terca has today informed Palm Infocenter of the imminent launch on Wednesday of version 8 of Funambol's open-source sync software, which will feature an all-new AJAX portal, but the part that really caught our attention was the news that it will support the Palm Pre and webOS. Funambol's intention is to make it simple to access your phone content in the cloud, and that the "dramatic improvement" in the new look-and-feel of the portal will place them head-to-head with competitors like Apple's MobileMe and Google Sync. It will uber-sync contacts, photos, calendars and email accounts in the one location - the perfect desktop companion to Palm's webOS Synergy, in other words.
So how is the Pre support going to work? At the time of this writing, we're still chasing further information, but we suspect either (a) a custom webOS sync app will be made available or (b) Funambol sync will be fully integrated with Synergy. And of course, this also means webOS AOL Mail support can't be far off. In the meantime, a photo preview of the new portal can be found here, and we've embedded a video preview (from March) after the break. It's looking good.