Intel and Motorola to Make Future Palm Microprocessors

Palm, Inc. has announced that key suppliers of ARM core-based technology have joined its new Palm OS Ready Program. Intel and Motorola will produce reference designs, and Texas Instruments (TI) will develop a wireless processing platform that is optimized for the Palm OS.

Intel will provide StrongARM and XScale Palm OS Ready solutions while Motorola will provide DragonBall MX1 Palm OS Ready solutions. The "Palm OS Ready" in their names means all of these microprocessors, no matter who makes them, will be able to run the next generation of the Palm OS.

The company has created this program to make it easier for developers to create new devices running the Palm OS. This doesn't just include new generations of handhelds, either. "Some licensees will want to bring fire-breathing, powerful handhelds in the market. Other might want to build a simple Palm operating system on a wristwatch,'' said Alan Kessler, general manager of Palm's Platform Solutions Group. "These deals will help bring those to market.''

But Palm-powered wristwatches aside, this announcement means that Palm's licensees won't be forced to go to Motorola to get their processors. This increased competition can only be healthy for the platform. Possibly this might not even be limited to only Intel and Motorola. There doesn't appear to be any reason why other chip manufactures couldn't also join the program and make their own Palm OS Ready processors.

Palm has not yet announced which company will make the processors that will be in the handhelds it makes itself.

Palm has also made the the new processors will be wireless-ready. TI will provide OMAP platform Palm OS Ready solutions. TI's OMAP architecture is an open platform that delivers the required performance and low power to enable real-time communications-based applications. "By leveraging the Palm OS platform with TI's high-performance, low-power OMAP architecture, OEMs will deliver a better, easier and more fulfilling wireless multimedia experience to consumers worldwide," said Jeff McCreary, senior vice president of marketing and sales for TI.

ARM will work closely with Palm to ensure that the Palm OS migrates smoothly to the ARM architecture and that ARM development tools are optimized to support the Palm OS platform.

Through licensing its Silicon Porting Kit, Palm is providing access to certain components of it operating system to the Palm OS Ready partners. The kit is designed to ease the transfer of the Palm platform to the respective processors, letting suppliers quickly satisfy demand from Palm's licensees. The kit will include a device abstraction layer, a hardware abstraction layer, tools, required Palm OS components, technical resources, training, support and access to marketing opportunities.

Analyst Kevin Burden of IDC warned that it will be a while before any of these chips actually start appearing in stores. "It will take a year before you actually see the chips and another six to nine months before you see any products based on it,'' he said.

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mikecane @ 7/24/2001 9:37:40 AM #
QUOTING: Analyst Kevin Burden of IDC warned that it will be a while before any of these chips actually start appearing in stores. "It will take a year before you actually see the chips and another six to nine months before you see any products based on it,'' he said.

-- by that time, the Toshiba GENIO will have sold at least a million units, the newest (still upcoming) iPaq will have done likewise, and perhaps at least one PPC vendor will have a PPC that comes close to the m5xx series in size. Yeesh...

RE: Ouch!
palmcoder @ 7/24/2001 9:42:45 AM #

yes, and other than Pocket Outlook, there will be all of 4 applications to run on those devices.

I can feel Palm, Inc. trembling in their boots....



RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 9:46:36 AM #
palm is really trembling now (not!).

well, it seems like this is another pc vs macintosh thing -- and microsoft's back to take out everything in their path (well, what's new?).

RE: Ouch!
Ed @ 7/24/2001 10:01:43 AM #
    ... by that time, the Toshiba GENIO will have sold at least a million units, the newest (still upcoming) iPaq will have done likewise, and perhaps at least one PPC vendor will have a PPC that comes close to the m5xx series in size. Yeesh...

And in that same time, Palm will have sold another four million units, Handspring will have sold two million, and Sony will have sold at least that many. Let's keep this in perspective, OK?

News Editor
Palm Infocenter
Palm needs ARM and OS 5.0 sooner than later
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 10:05:06 AM #
Well, I for one am disappointed and disturbed by this timetable. I was hoping to buy an ARM based Palm by this time next year.

Year from now + 6-9 months == January 2003 at the earliest.

XScale Pocket PCs will be hitting the shelves this fall and will be in their 3rd generation apparently by the time an ARM powered Palm comes to market if this proves to be accurate. Palm SHOULD be worried. Their stock price is around $5 and not going up anytime soon. Yes, Pocket Outlook sucks now but I'm sure it is going to be much improved in its 2nd/3rd revision.

Retooling the entire OS to run old and new apps is not an easy feat. I love Palm but I think their lack of innovation and lack of vision while they had a monster market share lead will be their undoing. They tried to convince us that no one wanted multimedia on a PDA, now they can't get a true multimedia PDA to market fast enough. Form factor (still the best) can only carry them so far.

Thank goodness for Pocket PC if only to make Palm realize that a 66Mhz processor and enhanced monochrome screens are not the future.

RE: Ouch!
mikecane @ 7/24/2001 10:07:52 AM #
The point is, this is a very long time to wait!

Not going to take that long!
bcombee @ 7/24/2001 11:00:18 AM #
Kevin Burden doesn't understand the nature of the ARM-core marketplace. I can't talk about Intel, but Motorola is planning on sampling the Dragonball MX1 by the end of the year, which usually means production a couple of months later. Getting a basic PDA hardware platform ready based on that chip won't take more than a couple of months, since its a drop-in replacement for the DragonBall Super VZ, effectively the same chip but with a 68K core.

Currently released details on the MX1 are at

RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 12:26:28 PM #
Posted by: palmcoder @ 7/24/2001 9:42:45 AM

yes, and other than Pocket Outlook, there will be all of 4 applications to run on those devices.

Please don't take this the wrong way......BUT
at least the 4 different applications on PPC will be all different and oppose to the
20 applications flooding the Palm market which all does exactly the same as all the other 20 programs avialible to the Palm OS..

Just toooooooooooo

RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 1:40:44 PM #
Ummmm, give me 20 different programs that basically do the same thing ANY day!
This way, I get to decide exactly what features I want and what I am willing to pay!

Quick example, Pocket Quicken, Pocket Money, Splash Money... Let me see they all basically
do the same thing, and offer almost all the features I want. Splash Money costs $20 the other
two $40 or $50 each... Hmmm, which one did I buy??? (And I am sure I missed many other
software packages that do the same thing!)

Thank you, I will take all the options I can!!!

RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 2:58:27 PM #
Let's not forget all of the "mirror" programs that turn your Palm into a mirror. PalmGear must have 20 of those.

RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 4:39:59 PM #
Yeah I know how much people want Palm to be the fastest thing around but it's important that they do it right. That means making it super stable and giving current developers enough time to be prepared. Besides, the economy isn't so strong right now so it's a good thing Palm has the m100 to expand market share.

RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/25/2001 1:34:30 AM #
Mike Cane... isn't he the prophetic genius who wrote a whole essay of jibberish on reasons why Sony's PEG-N700C won't come to the US market? (

HAHAHAHAHA... Seems like his crystal ball is a little murky. Maybe he should get another one from Microsoft.

RE: Ouch!
mikecane @ 7/25/2001 8:50:39 AM #
I just love these pimply weasels who know how to post but don't have the guts or brains to register (as for lack of brains, they are so pathetic they can't even imagine registering with a pseudonym!).

As for what I've written in the past, it's all here for people to freely read. Nothing has ever been withdrawn. And my *name* is on it. What about yours?

Sure Palm OS has 10,000 apps - but most look like this:
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/25/2001 12:12:53 PM #

My Friends v1.0 $6.50
Smoking Log v1.1 $8.99
Expense Pro v 1.6 $9.99
MCE v 1.0 $8.00
Mileage Tracker v 1.0 $8.00
Games Accident Log v 1.0 $7.50
Accident Log v 1.0 $6.50
My Tapes v 1.0 $8.00
My Music CD's v 1.0 $10.00
My MedBox v 1.0 $4.50
My House Work v 1.0 $6.00
My Lovers v 1.0 $6.50
My Tailor v 1.5 $6.50
My URL's v 1.0
My PhotoGear V 2.0 $6.50
My DVD Rack $7.00
My Kids $8.00
My Cars $8.00
My Shopping Cart $6.50
My Luggage $8.00
My Party $7.50
My NotesPad (Freeware)
My Pets $6.00
My Career $8.00
My Books $10.00
MY HouseKeeper $7.00
My Grade $6.00
My Expense $6.50
Diabetes Tracker $7.50
School Work $8.00
GetReady $4.50
Lotto # Generator $5.00

So many of the Palm applications out there are crap created by PDA Toolbox in 10 minutes. The sad thing is that for every high quality app like DateBk4 or Ultrasoft Money, there are 100 programs like "Accident Log" and "My Friends".

We need a site that provides simple, reliable reviews
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/25/2001 2:50:03 PM #
It would be nice to be able to weed out all of the bad programs so we could avoid wasting time downloading them.

RE: Ouch!
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/26/2001 9:03:42 AM #

don't flatter yourself. you're not even worth the effort of registering just to be not "anonymous". It's actually quite amusing that you're willing to associate your name or psuedonym with that mindless drivle in your Op/Ed articles.

my so-called anonymity is no different than your registered account. AC or not AC, you still lack any business sense.

if you would like to embarrass yourself even more, we can take this conversation privately. e-mail me at

palm OS/WinCE ready ?

c_blue @ 7/24/2001 10:04:35 AM #
I think this is a nice move for palm to become a only OS company like microsoft. with this program, you'll be able to get a pda palm OS/winCE ready... so as in PCs now, you can choose the OS.... or even have boot choices so you could power the pda on and choose the OS you want to use.

It's genious

jack @ 7/24/2001 10:08:49 AM #
They figured out how to make two competitors from different segments of the computer market come together in an unprecedented way for their platform on a commercial scale.

That's really commendable--time to buy Palm shares and hold for a couple of years.

And How is This News?

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 11:32:40 AM #
One thing I don't understand abou all this hoopla. How is this a news?

first of, these are all ARM microcodes, the only differences between the chips are multimedia and com extensions. What does it really mean "Palm" ready? does it mean Palm is ARM ready or will Palm hand written several OSes for each of those chip?

if the first one is true, than this whole announcement thing is a roose, just a marketing gimmic. It's a little like saying Microsoft support wide range of chip on win OS as long as it is x86 based code. (ie. Microsoft can claim the same thing tomorrow, that it will have a program that declare all ARM chips are "WinCE" ready)

secondly. This is so far into the future, we are talking about 2 PDA life cycles. A lot of things can happen in 18 months, heck a year ago there wasn't significant competition in the market for Palm. A years from now maybe we will see 3 ways race between WinCE, Linux based pda lead by sharp, and Palm. (in that order of market share)

This is market share game now, the day of high margin and slow upgrade is long gone. And frankly how Palm loose the revenue game is already a big sign from above to shape up. And remember from all the big player above, only Palm inc. does not have the experiance of rewriting OS and delivering a new set of hardware. (Win CE and Sharp all have that experiance)

RE: And How is This News?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 12:05:06 PM #
I think a look at the facts and a lesson from inside the tornado is instructive. The PDA market race is ocer. The Win CE share has not changed much in the last three years, in fact if anything it has gone down. The best technology almost never wins. Palm is the eight hundred pound gorrilla and is very unlikely to lose its grip. It just doesn't happen. The press likes to write about this but the market share remains strong. For the average person, the mghz does not matter they buy what thier friendds have the Palm OS. Review what all the experts said two years ago. They all suggested that Microsoft would have 30-40% share. Its share oonce again has gone down despite the many many Palm missteps. That is just how technology works. All these arguments about the technology sound eerily similar to the sounds emanating form IBM about OS/2 versus Windows. A lesson in history is instructive

RE: And How is This News?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 12:31:57 PM #
> What does it really mean "Palm" ready?

Here's what the Wall Street Journal has to say:

Under the terms of the initiative, Palm will work with ARM Holdings to create and provide a software-development kit. Palm will then license the kit to chip makers such as Intel, Motorola, and Texas Instruments so that they can create chips embedded with components of the Palm operating system.

The development is expected to speed up the production of hand-held computers by third-party hardware makers. In the past, hardware makers didn't have the option of using Palm-OS embedded chips in production; instead, they had to graft their own Palm-OS layer onto chips.

RE: And How is This News?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 12:42:32 PM #
A very long time ago...... in a different centry, there was an company called Netscape which was the 800 pound Gorrilla. It owned the market. It was the definition of the web browser.
Now they are dead.

Microsoft is not something to ignore. Microsoft has some of the best business stragities in the world. It doens't matter if it's ethical or legal. The remains, the win every market they go after. Every company in the world would give it's soul to be where Microsoft is and have that kind of market share, period. Remember..Microsoft has been writing OSes longer longer than most of you probably ever knew what a computer was.. Palm just got lucky, (which probably explains why they haven't made any changes in over 6 years).Yeah.. If you are Apple... than yeah, people buy Apple computers because their friends have it.. But when you are in the corperate world, people buy products that give them resultes, have power, is expandable and have multi functions and that multi tasks. PPC have had more success in the corperate market then any other time in it's existance. The fact that they can use industry standard perpherals to access their wirless LANs makes them ideal.

Yeah..people may not care about Mhz.... But businesses do.. And anyone using anything besides a Macintosh seems to as well. PPCs market share has never been better in the PDA world... they have a very bright future..

We all need excuses to deal with Palms short comming and late entrence in a world they preached to us..(the PDA Users) where multimedia would not be wanted and needed. Now it seems that Palm is scrambeling in their boots to become what PPC is today.. If ever a company had no direction in their future growth and made it up as they went along..Palm sure does...

Can We Give It a Rest?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 1:16:57 PM #
Do we have to have the Palm vs. PPC war again? I've heard the same arguments about 500 times. Palm has a bigger market share. Microsoft always wins. Both are good arguments and it will be interesting to see how they get played out over the coming years. But can we quit rehashing it over and over? Sheesh, this is why I quit going to Mac sites.

RE: And How is This News?
ganoe @ 7/24/2001 1:35:14 PM #
"Remember..Microsoft has been writing OSes longer longer than most of you probably ever knew what a computer was.. Palm just got lucky"

Hardly. Microsoft bought an OS from someone else and licensed it to IBM (the short version of the story). They didn't write any real OS until much, much later.

Of course Palm OS was just built on top of another 3rd party OS as well. If you want a company that's been writing OSes longer longer than most of you probably ever knew what a computer was try QNX.

RE: And How is This News?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 2:40:41 PM #
One thing nobody can deny, Microsoft know how to write consummer class OS. Say all the crappy thing you want about DOS and Windoz, but nobody has yet to come close in the entire history of computing nearing their keen eye on market trend.

And Windows CE is the mother of all consumer OS. It has to be cheap, easily consumable, and produced like hot popcorn before the movie starts.

timing and listening to consumer demand are what it's all about. Psion die because it try to make exotic caviar covered popcorn after the movie starts, and Palm product start to taste like yesterday pop corn with smelly butter topping.

RE: And How is This News?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 3:50:09 PM #
re: "Palm just got lucky, (which probably explains why they haven't made any changes in over 6 years)"

Before seeing lots of multimedia features, I'd like to see some of the basics improved to a more usable point (e.g. address book which handles more than one address per person in a non-kludge way that can be synced w/ Outlook).

RE: And How is This News?
jtopf @ 7/25/2001 1:04:00 AM #
Microsoft does not win every battle they enter.

What is the number one personal finance software package?

MS Money?
That would be Quicken

What is the number one ISP?Internet content provider?
That would be AOL

Microsoft tried to establish their own proprietary font and page description language (their partner was apple of all companies)
Adobe and PostScript are still here and are the dominant platform.

Microsoft doesn't always win and they won't win here.

RE: And How is This News?
ganoe @ 7/25/2001 1:46:03 PM #
"One thing nobody can deny, Microsoft know how to write consummer class OS. Say all the crappy thing you want about DOS and Windoz, but nobody has yet to come close in the entire history of computing nearing their keen eye on market trend."

I am blown away at how people can believe Microsoft's marketing hype and BS. There is no recent MS OS that I would recommend consumers use. There are and have been other far better OS's than MS has written to date. As far as market trends go, MS dismissed things like multimedia and the Internet for years. The only thing Microsoft knows how to do is make poor replicas of other companies' successful software and integrate them with their OS or OS sales strategy in a way that it runs the other companies out of business.

RE: And How is This News?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/25/2001 9:51:48 PM #
let's be clear Netscape was never an 800 pound gorrila they gave away their product. Corporations bought PCs because of the applications that ran on Microsoft software (primarily lotus). Most observers that have blind faith in a person or company would have said there is no way that Microsoft could beat IBM, but it happened. Third, despite their reputation Microsoft has not been good at dominating other markets as much some beleive. The browser business was only changed becuase of a scorched earth policy even that did not work in media players. Consumer internet access has been a disaster, pdas, set-top boxes AT&T has all but eliminated their role despite a $5 billion investment and ohone operating systems. Even in their server market has been disapointing to the Microsoft faithful. Finally, the fortunes of most companies under continuing pressure from the government for antitrust violations declines (IBM, GM). In coporate America, recent surveys show that Palm is favored over Pocket PC devices depsite the considerable processing power and storage differences. What happens when the gap is narrowed to meaningless differences? The arm announcement is the same as win 95. It made the differences between and Apple so small that nobody ever thought Apple could ever catch Microsoft. That is where we be in 15 months.

Does this mean...

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 12:40:37 PM #
In the future, I will be able to install the Palm OS on a Compaq iPAQ and run Palm applications?

RE: Does this mean...
Ed @ 7/24/2001 1:21:31 PM #
No, these will be special "Palm Ready" versions of the processors with parts of the Palm OS embedded in them.

News Editor
Palm Infocenter
RE: Does this mean...
bcombee @ 7/24/2001 1:26:28 PM #
Actually, I doubt that Palm OS will be on the chips directly. From what I've read, its likely that Motorola and Intel will be writing device drivers for their ARM-based chips' peripheral sets so a Palm OS licensee will be able to pick up the OS from Palm, the drivers from the chip manufacturers, and be able to quickly produce a Palm OS device. The chip companies will also make reference hardware designs that licensees can buy, customize, and sell -- look at how Dell buys their motherboards and processors from Intel for an example of how this works.

RE: Does this mean...
Ed @ 7/24/2001 1:52:04 PM #
This isn't an area where I'm an expert so I'm going on what they said in the Wall Street Journal, who said that portions of the Palm OS would be embedded into the chip.

Someone listed the link above but here it is again:

News Editor
Palm Infocenter

RE: Does this mean...
bcombee @ 7/24/2001 2:37:09 PM #
I think the WSJ reporter misunderstood the systems aspect of the announcement. Motorola, Intel, and TI aren't just going to be selling chips to the licensees, but are going to be selling systems based around the chips -- its a big trend in the semiconductor market where chip vendors are trying to move up the value chain and sell combinations of processors and the software that runs on them.

RE: Does this mean...
Ed @ 7/24/2001 4:45:24 PM #
I think you are corrct. Here's what Cnet had to say:

That's almost too non-technical but it sounds a lot closer to what you said than what the WSJ did.

News Editor
Palm Infocenter


I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 2:24:18 PM #
So let me get this straight,

this alliance is to make compiler and embedded Palm OS integration for a chip that will be produced in the future for a PDA that has yet to be designed?

This is a long term strategy and not something that will work immediately. (ie. a luxury that Palm Inc cannot afford)

I thought the announcement will be
a) Palm Inc. announces an adoption of a chip for soon to be introduced next gen PDA
b) description how OS 5.0 will have all this cool multimedia extension on that chip
c) clear cut time table when and how this will be executed.

This sounds more like way back when IBM/MOT/APPL were talking about how Power PC project will kill x86, and Taligent stuff will annihilate the rest of the OS.

a year later even underdog like AMD had bigger market share than the Napoleonic dream of Power PC.

This is dope. Palm Inc. might as well announced that they are planning to develop next-next generation PDA that use optical quantum chip for superior speed along with built in psycho telepathic com extension for wireless feature.


show me the market first, than talk about the solution, not a solution for a demand that has yet to be generated.

where is the meat? ya know the PDA that I want to buy!

RE: hmmm....
bcombee @ 7/24/2001 2:39:11 PM #
No... lets take the Motorola side as an example. Palm and Motorola will together launch the MX1 as a ARM-based system for running Palm OS. Motorola will sell to the device manufacturers a combination of the processor (with its embedded peripherals) and the software to drive the processor. The software will already be written to work with Palm OS. The licensee then just puts their customization layer into Palm OS, designs the board and case, and now has a product.

IMHO, this is a very compelling partnership to get ARM-based devices out on the market soon, leveraging the expertise at both Palm and the chip makers. By using the systems expertise of Motorola or Intel, the licensees can concentrate on what makes their device special.

18 months?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/24/2001 9:57:47 PM #
the soon we are taling about here is 18 months. if you noticed recently 3-4 months are long enough to turn handheld scene upside down. So this entire talk about some cool compiler and dev board coming in 12 months is definitely far in the future. The market is expecting next gen 5.0 product by Christmas to stop WinCE to reach massive unstopable critical mass, not 18 months from now.

so long as Palm does not have Palm class product, it has no chance competing in the lucrative $500 niche.

RE: hmmm....
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/25/2001 1:27:41 AM #
I've heard the threats about the massive unstoppable WinCE/PocketPC for the past 3-4 years. It hasn't happened and the list of things you could do on PPC that you couldn't do on a Palm has shrunk. 16 bit color, mp3, movies, Word/Excel equivalents, expansion capabilities -all this and more can be found on a Palm device.

RE: hmmm....
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/25/2001 2:22:00 AM #
This thread wouldn't even exist if Palm's unit capability gap is marginal or shrinking fast. We wouldn't talk about ARM or multimedia API if the gap is shrinking fast.

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