Rumor: palmOne "Life Drive" High End Handheld

An anonymous source has provided new info regarding a circulating rumor about a upcoming high end handheld from palmOne. Dubbed "Life Drive", the unit is a speculated to feature dual wireless and a built in hard drive.

The source claims the unit will be the new high end handheld, replacing the aging Tungsten C model. The details are slim but the rumor states it will have built in WiFi and Bluetooth and a 4 Gigabyte hard drive. It will not have a removable battery and is said to be as thick as two Tungsten T5's. Life Drive is likely the code name for the device.

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I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth

a_nonamiss @ 3/28/2005 2:30:34 PM # Q
So we finally get our dual wireless, as well as a 4GB internal HDD. (which is a phenomenal feature not found in any handheld devices that I know of)

Great specs, but it sounds like this thing will be as big as a cinder block.

Let's hope only part of the rumor is true. :)


Palm Pilot 1000 > Palm Pilot Professional > Palm III > Palm M100 > Sony Clié PEG-T415 > Palm T|T3

Two Tungsten T5 thick
potter @ 3/28/2005 3:26:07 PM # Q
> ... is said to be as thick as two Tungsten T5's.
Ouch, that seams awfully thick. Now, I have had two Tungsten T's in one pocket before, both in hard cases, so this does seam to be a possible size, but not very practical.

Now, it could be that early prototypes were this thick, but the actual device will be more in line with typical PDA sizes.

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
istara @ 3/28/2005 3:44:53 PM # Q
Those specs are exactly what my source said. The source kept mentioning how "bulky" it would be by comparison to the T5.
RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
AdamaDBrown @ 3/28/2005 3:51:15 PM # Q
Actually, a 4 GB microdrive is built into the Sharp Zaurus C3000, and PocketPCs have had access to removable microdrives via CompactFlash for years.

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
mikecane @ 3/28/2005 3:55:42 PM # Q
At what price? $500? $600?

No mention of the screen, either. If it's to replace the TC -- another SSS (Small Square Screen)?

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
ackmondual @ 3/28/2005 5:07:45 PM # Q
most likely. $450 - $750. Unfortunately it seems this is one of those cases where "the cost of the whole is more than the sum of its parts put together" deal.
RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
LiveFaith @ 3/28/2005 6:14:17 PM # Q
Screen will be landscape HVGA

Pat Horne;
Original Ipod Size?
Gekko @ 3/28/2005 6:44:31 PM # Q

Is that 2x T5?

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
svrontis @ 3/28/2005 7:17:53 PM # Q
Great, just what the world needs - another multimedia brick with 2 too many radios.

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
AdamaDBrown @ 3/28/2005 7:33:16 PM # Q
svrontis, has it ever occurred to you that other people might have other needs? You seem hell bent on insisting that since YOU don't want any kind of communication capabilities, then nobody else could possibly need or want them either.

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
svrontis @ 3/28/2005 10:23:05 PM # Q
Thanks for your comment.

Yes, it has occurred to me that others may need sophisticated communication capabilities. In fact, there seem to be daily complaints about p1's efforts in this department.

That's my point. All those tedious complaints seem to proceed on the basis that everyone wants WiFi/etc and that a palmpilot without such features is next to useless.

I don't agree. Speaking for myself, such gadgets have no utility in day-to-day life (although they may be fun to play with for a while) and I don't see why I should pay for something which likely I will never use. I don't think I am on my own here - some of the best selling units in recent years have no wireless communication facilities at all (excluding IR, that is) - take the TE for instance.

If p1 is sensible, they will continue to offer a range of palmpilots - some with elaborate wireless facilities; some without.

To repeat, I do appreciate that some users (at least those how post regularly on PIC) demand WiFi, but it's not for everyone.

There is marketing angle to consider too. The palmpilot market is pretty crowded. The challenge faced by p1 is to demonstrate to prospective customers how their products are better and cheaper than all the rest. Adopting a policy of merely adding features which others have is probably not the best approach when it comes to product differentiation - 'me too' does not mean 'I'm better' (as Sony's failure demonstrates).

Different strokes for different folks...
Masamune @ 3/29/2005 7:14:13 AM # Q
svrontis - PalmOne does do quite a wide range of handhelds without wireless communications - the majority of the Zire range, the Tungsten E.....but as yet has only ever produced one Wifi device. I just think people are enthusatic to see how PalmOne produces a dual wireless device.

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
svrontis @ 3/29/2005 8:48:21 AM # Q
OK, OK, you guys win - I apologize for boring you all with my unfashionable opinions.

RE: I'll try not to look a gift horse in the mouth
moofie @ 3/29/2005 1:19:05 PM # Q
Wow, Avrontis, nice straw man. Way to play the martyr card. You're really adding a lot to the discussion! I appreciate your contribution.

If you can't handle people who disagree with you, I suggest you unplug your Internet connection, and invest in a nice close-fitting hood that covers your eyes and blocks your ears.

You might even find that you like it.

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Too good to be true

Frenchie @ 3/28/2005 2:31:29 PM # Q
Lifedrive? Kind of sounds like an AA meeting topic to me. The specs sound too good to be true. This i will have to dub a false rumor. Comon guys this is PalmOne :p

The world will end in 2006. Just as it was predicted in the bible along with the release of Microsoft Longhorn.... :p
RE: Too good to be true
UZI4U182 @ 3/28/2005 8:47:48 PM # Q
Hehe...don't life-drink and drive!
Main PDA: NX70v + WL100
RE: Too good to be true
mikecane @ 3/29/2005 9:51:29 AM # Q
MADLD = Mothers Against Drunk Life Drivers.

Come on! I couldn't resist!

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Will almost certainly use Cobalt

Rome @ 3/28/2005 3:02:03 PM # Q
Given its specs, I am almost 100% certain that this device will run the Cobalt OS.

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
voice of chaos @ 3/28/2005 3:57:09 PM # Q
I doubt Cobalt on this device. palmOne has shown reluctance to go to the new OS, mostly due to a combination of the higher licensing fees and increased support costs (now they have to support OS 5 and Cobalt).

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
twizza @ 3/28/2005 8:16:20 PM # Q
I agree that Cobalt would be on this device. It only makes sense. Call it lifedrive and it at least needs to work for you without being patched together. Dual wireless, heck single wireless outside of IR, is patchwork on Garnet. Doing it here makes Cobalt the obvious choice.

That said, if this were to come out with Garnet, palmOne will get a stern talking to from my mommy.

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
Gekko @ 3/28/2005 9:54:25 PM # Q

Cobalt is Nagel's other bastard child that nobody wants (Copland being the other one).

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
Tamog @ 3/29/2005 8:21:49 AM # Q
I think that Cobalt will be needed for FAT32 support....
Best regards
Tam Hanna

Find out more about the Palm OS in my blog:
RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
mikecane @ 3/29/2005 9:34:21 AM # Q
That's *if* it has a hard drive. I still say FRAM.

1) Can you imagine the HD support nightmares?

2) Do you want to have to wait for someone to come out with a POS version of, say, ScanDisk? Or Norton Utilities?

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
Masamune @ 3/29/2005 10:47:35 AM # Q
It's possible ot will have Cobalt for my my money, I don't think it will. I believe PalmOne is saving Cobalt for a new range of business devices, whereas this LifeDrive will be a one-off. That said, it does make a good case for Cobalt if the device is just a one off because if it fails, then at least it won't be much money down the pan.

Why, though, would you put Wifi and Bluetooth on a Media player though?

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
mikecane @ 3/29/2005 11:28:18 AM # Q
Why put WiFi in it?!

Why put WiFi in the PSP?

In fact, there's a GREAT reason for a media player to have WiFi: **P2P**! LimeWire, for example, is written in Java! Get it up on PalmOS, boys! Me want my new Doctor Who episodes!!!

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
archie@PIC @ 3/29/2005 11:48:14 AM # Q
It would use Cobalt! It has to use Cobalt! It would easy to use Cobalt!

For this device there is practically no tailoring of the OS involved (unlike the Palm OS for a smartphone, WHICH PalmSource has continually ignored). It should be pretty easy to incorporate.

And it will give the Treo users Wi-Fi like Palm has promised at Roadshows. To bad it isn't built in like every Treo user seems to want. But this way is better, right? Because now Treo users get to fork over another five-hu... I mean now they get 2 cool devices to carr... wait, no, I mean now they get wi-fi.

It would be quite useful. And I strongly suspect that Cobalt will be used to enable simultaneous use of Bluetooth 1.2 WITH wi-fi. Wi-fi access broadcast to your Bluetooth Treo, Tungsten or Zire (or, I suppose you could probably plug it in directly to the Treo too, if you wanted to bother digging the Life Drive out of your briefcase or pocket). Yippee! And wait, that's right. Remember how the new connector can pipe enough power to run and slowly trickle charge the Treo and the T5. Well that will come in handy with the iLife Drive and its huge battery, giving you an extra bit of "life" for your Treo once the battery charge has run down.

Anyway, it does seem odd that they will be expecting Treo users to purchase a second Palm device to carry around.

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
I.M Anonymous @ 3/29/2005 12:49:23 PM # Q
"That's *if* it has a hard drive. I still say FRAM.
1) Can you imagine the HD support nightmares?
2) Do you want to have to wait for someone to come out with a POS version of, say, ScanDisk? Or Norton Utilities?"

Your're right. I run ScanDisk and Norton Utilities on my 40GB iPod all the time.


RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
mikecane @ 3/29/2005 1:38:57 PM # Q
Hahahaha. Thanks for the correction. But tell me, does the iPod HD use FAT? I'm ignorant on that point -- and admit it!

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
LarryGarfield @ 3/29/2005 6:22:10 PM # Q
The iPod Mac version uses HFS. If you set it up on a Windows box, it gets converted to FAT32 since Windows can't read HFS.

You need to convert it to FAT32 for use under Linux as well.

This post is ROT26 encrypted. Reading it is a violation of the DMCA

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
cbowers @ 3/29/2005 10:48:49 PM # Q
"I think that Cobalt will be needed for FAT32 support"

Nah, I had it on my HandEra 330 eons ago.

"Your're right. I run ScanDisk and Norton Utilities on my 40GB iPod all the time."
1. That wouldn't happen to be an HFS+ formatted ipod though would it?
2. Unlike PalmOS devices thus far, your ipod actually does have a disk check/repair app built into it.

As it is, it's a bit of a pain when my SD card goes south. No disk util on the Palm. fsck_msdos isn't fully complete in 10.3 on the Mac, so that's no dice. And Linux only sees the CF slot on my multi-slot card reader. So I have to dual-boot it into win98 just to run sandisk, which is about all I keep the '98 partition on there for. All told it's easier to just keep regular backups of the card to an SMB share on either the Linux of Mac boxes. Then when the SD card goes south, I just format it and copy the content back over WiFi (Tungsten C and SMBMate).

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
jkirvin @ 3/30/2005 12:58:21 AM # Q
It'll have a hard drive, which will be just as reliable as those in the iPod.

It'll have a non-removable battery, too, just like the iPod.

RE: Will almost certainly use Cobalt
mikecane @ 3/30/2005 9:51:06 AM # Q
Given the pictures leaked below, I concede on the FRAM issue. It's a hard drive. Not complaining!

How sad. Larry Garfield is the only hard hitting journalist
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/3/2005 5:05:18 PM # Q
I can't believe that twinkie Larry/Laura Garfield is the only pundit around that has the brains and the cojones to ask Palm "hard hitting" questions. I recently listened to the PalmLinux press conference call/debacle and Larry was the only one that seemed to know what the he11 he was talking about. In fact, he was the only one that seemed interested in asking Palm any questions at all! Ridiculous.

I thought he was a pipsqueek back when we were both using TRGpros and HandEra's, but I gotta hand it to him: he's one of the only people writing about Palms now that has the guts to tell it like it is.

It would be nice to see Larry get a regular monthly column here at PIC to keep us updated on what's going on in the PalmOS world from his perspective. Congratulations on becoming a he11 of a Palm journalist, Larry.



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.

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not interesting actually

oneself @ 3/28/2005 3:21:12 PM # Q
too good specs? ha. 4 gigs in double T5? go here -

100Gb in double T5 size is being sold for 3 months in shop near my office. Linux and WiFi there already. It records TV and playes Divx for 5 hours on one charge. It has organizers and office docs working.

Samsung had working 95g phone on Cebit, with 2Gb HDD.

So this Life Drive could only be interesting, if it's less than 180g weight. or it is dead before release.

RE: not interesting actually
mikecane @ 3/28/2005 3:53:18 PM # Q
Amen on the Archos!

I think the Archos uses the same HWR the Zaurus used. If this is so, it offers one thing this "LifeDrive" cannot -- CLASSIC GRAFFITI (not by default; you have to modify the built-in characters).

RE: not interesting actually
hkklife @ 3/28/2005 4:04:32 PM # Q
"Tweaked" Graffiti is still the work of the devil. Why should I have to tediously recalibrate everything to mimic G1 when a simple Xerox-approved plugin could return things to <2002 status easy as a quick download & install?

I was all set to start migrating from the T3 to this "LifeDrive" until I saw the thickness! Add a case to that thing and it IS a brick--right up there with the NR/NX series Sonys! Non-removable battery is the definite deal-breaker. Heck, I could have lived with a T|C formfactor with an elongated 320*480 screen that was a touch smaller in actual size than the T3/T5.

RE: not interesting actually
mikecane @ 3/28/2005 4:21:06 PM # Q
I'm with you on the Xerox-licensed ClassicG pay-for-use download!!

I am very skeptical about this having an HD in it. We recently had those headlines here at PIC about the multi-GB FRAM chips. I suspect it'll actually have that. The thickness is most likely due to a *battery*, *not* an HD.

Hey, if you could watch a full ripped DVD on a transatlantic flight and *still not have to recharge upon landing*, would you think that thickness was worth it?

*&^%##@ I gotta start saving pennies Just In Case...


RE: not interesting actually
cbowers @ 3/28/2005 5:44:42 PM # Q
It would have to have one honking large battery to justify it.
Dell and HP models already have dual wireless with an empty slot just waiting for your choice of Multi-GB drives, and yet already get longer battery life (with larger batteries) in a smaller package than my Tungsten C.

Anyway, not going to pass judgment until it's announced. The size won't surprise me though. PalmOne only manages small when it's comparatively under-spec'd.

RE: not interesting actually
Wollombi @ 3/28/2005 6:14:25 PM # Q
Why petition Xerox? They *lost* the lawsuit, and though they have sworn to appeal, it doesn't seem that they have or will. Unless someone can shed more precise light on this subject, the Xerox debate is essentially over.

Petition PalmOne/PalmSource.


There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.

RE: not interesting actually
AdamaDBrown @ 3/28/2005 6:39:11 PM # Q
4 gigs of flash memory still costs a couple of hundred dollars alone. Compared to $50 in bulk for 4 GB microdrives, and building in a huge battery to power it, which way do you think PalmOne would go?

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