More Details of Palm's Hardware Plans Emerge

Palm has a "take it slow" attitude when it comes to switching to upgraded hardware. OS 4, which was demoed at this week's PalmSource 2000, will run on the Motorola's Dragonball processors, not the enhanced ones based on the ARM design. It should run comfortably on all current Palm's capable of being upgraded, though many of them won't be able to take advantage of it new features, like 16-bit color obviously. The new OS will be "Bluetooth-ready,'' but it won't actually include the software needed, said Bill Maggs, Palm's chief technical officer.

Update: Earlier this week, Palm CEO Carl Yankowski said OS 4 will ship this spring, to be followed by a Bluetooth-related upgrade in the summer.

Other Hardware News
In what is possibly the best news at the conference, Palm announced that they will adopt a uniform base connector so all future models will be able to use the same cradles, cables, and external hardware modules.

Palm also reiterated their plans to include the Secure Digital (SD) slot in future models. The SD slot allows hardware add-ons like MP3 players,additional storage, or Bluetooth.

While Maggs showed Palm's current software in emulation mode on a development board built around an ARM processor, ARM-based Palms won't be available until 2002, when they also plan to release OS 5. The ARM chip used on the Palm development board was made by Cirrus Logic, but Palm said they have not decided whose ARM chips it will eventually adopt.

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New PQA features

I.M. Anonymous @ 12/14/2000 9:29:02 AM #
I have heard rumors that PQAs have been enhanced. But I can find no substantial source of
information. Anybody care to chip in?

RE: New PQA features
palmcoder @ 12/14/2000 1:14:04 PM #
There are several enhancements coming down the pipeline. Registered developers can access the PalmSource slides at

RE: New PQA features
digichimp @ 12/16/2000 6:59:58 AM #
roux mars-
its gonna rock

Palm is complicating my life

I.M. Anonymous @ 12/14/2000 9:34:35 AM #
This complicates the decision of whether to buy the first Palm that supports SD in 2001...or wait till 2002 and buy the first Palm running ARM. Frustrating decision.

RE: Palm is complicating my life
I.M. Anonymous @ 12/14/2000 10:43:19 AM #
I think you'll end up buying both...heheh

RE: Palm is complicating my life
I.M. Anonymous @ 12/14/2000 1:12:13 PM #

RE: Palm is complicating my life
I.M. Anonymous @ 12/14/2000 1:12:42 PM #
i know i will....

thanks to all my non-tech friends, i have a pretty good group of people to sell my 2nds to!

RE: Palm is complicating my life
digichimp @ 12/16/2000 7:05:53 AM #
don't wait.
buy now.
figure out what u need: wireless or colorgaming or storage
2002 is too long to wait.
Vc with SD is coming 2001
add a sled and you're good to go.
or trgpro or HSPrism plus innodrive or novatel

speed does not equal need in a handheld.
real solutions count.
palm powered rules.

RE: Palm is complicating my life
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/12/2001 11:14:04 AM #
Or just spend the $150 for an M100 and figure in 2002 you'll be giving it to your mom (dad, sis, uncle, niece, etc). That'll be about when the SD modules will be affordable to the average geek.

That aside, I'm still on the fence for the usefulness of all these add-ons. I haven't seen one that doesn't up the fragility factor on the devices. And the cost, yeesh! Doesn't Palm remember that we were attracted to these things because they were as useful as our Franklin planners at or less than the cost? Who's got a $1000 Franklin? And if I did, it damn well better be a laptop. And who'd want to carry a $1000 palm? I'd be must less paranoid about dropping a $150 computer than a $1000 one with all the gadgets. That's what's kept me (and I'm sure lots o' folk) away from those $999 Wince boxes.

"SD" = Springboard?

WebGrafix @ 12/14/2000 5:59:57 PM #
It sounds that way to me. Why wait- go get a Visor.
RE: SD = Springboard?
Ed @ 12/20/2000 9:59:47 AM #
The main advantage the SD standard has over Springboard is the size of the modules. Compared to the size of a handheld, many Springboards are fairly large, approaching the size of the handheld itself. SD modules will be much smaller, about the size of a postage stamp at 32 mm by 24 mm and a slender 2.1 mm thick. What this will do to the cost of SD modules is anyone's guess.

Palm Infocenter
I.M. Anonymous @ 1/17/2001 12:48:04 PM #
I have a Visor. The Springboards are not worth the money. Do wait and purchase the technology once it's been out for while. Buying a Handspring was a big mistake. I am completely dissatisfied.

I.M. Anonymous @ 1/24/2001 10:59:12 PM #
It is true that many Springboard (and compatibles) are not worth the money, but there are a few (maybe two handsful) that are worth just about what you pay for them. (If you can get them at a discount they are certainly worth what you pay for them.)

The early products for many new "standards" are made by fast & loose marketers who take advantage of those with more money than sense. Large U.S. West Coast operations have made fortunes on that statement.

The GPS modules for the Handspring are not all equal, for example. One or two (maybe, just maybe three) or them are valuable - the others are trashworthy. The 2nd pass at the Visor Phone (the model that actually works beyond the Major Metro Areas (MMAs) of the East and West Coasts is another good example of a potentially valuable Springboard module.

But... we're whining about "nice to have" things and not the day's food, shelter or promise. Perspective?

I.M. Anonymous @ 3/11/2001 7:38:54 PM #
I have a visor delux and like what it can do and compared to anything else on the market think it is a definite best buy. BUT the new offerings of the Palm os offer the most useful aspects of the handspring modules and then some. The access to a auto file moving software in 4.0 is a big one to me. That alows the additional memory to really be useful. The availability of a vibrating alarm(I think the m505 is supposed to have this) is a handspring module in itself. It seems like Palm is taking the most useful features of the springboards and making the features accessible in new m505...

Let your needs dictate...

mallthus @ 12/15/2000 7:24:31 PM #
When I went from a III to a IIIc, I did it because I had started to bang my head against the 2mb ceiling, not because I wanted the next cool thing. Think first if you have any NEED for ARM, Bluetooth, SD or MP3 on your Palm. I mean, what good is Bluetooth if there's nothing to attach to?

Palm IIIc

I.M. Anonymous @ 1/15/2001 1:56:38 AM #
Does anyone know if the Palm IIIc will beable to take advantage of the new 18-bit color? I am in the market for a Palm and would really like some color. Should I wait it out for a while?

RE: Palm IIIc
I.M. Anonymous @ 1/15/2001 1:58:56 AM #
I mean 16-bit color.

RE: Palm IIIc
I.M. Anonymous @ 3/10/2001 6:43:27 AM #
I read of someone who upgraded his IIIc operating system to 4.0 but it still remained 8 bit colour. The 8 bit colour in the IIIc seems to be a hardware constraint.

SD Attachments

I.M. Anonymous @ 3/9/2001 1:22:42 AM #
I have spotted an article in Channels Asia titled " Wireless in the palm of your hand"(March Edition)that talked about SD Attachments. It has pictures of 6 SD attachements, Modem, Camera, Bluetooth I/O, SD Memory card and some other stuff which I can not figure out.
This is really neat, I try to email the writer to get the picture and will update later.
If you can get a copy of Channel Asia Publication, then you can see the SD Attachments.

M505 with old Palm V folding keyboard

I.M. Anonymous @ 3/20/2001 3:25:25 PM #
I'm considering upgrading from my Palm VX to the new M505. Will the 505 fit my folding keyboard?

RE: M505 with old Palm V folding keyboard
Ed @ 3/20/2001 3:50:37 PM #
In a word, no.

Palm Infocenter
RE: M505 with old Palm V folding keyboard
I.M. Anonymous @ 8/14/2001 10:52:53 AM #
Wait awhile before buying a new folding keyboard as I am sure someone :-) will develop an adapter for it to the 505/500. Palm people are very adaptive.



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