Rumor: m505 Appears at Palm SD Seminar

Engineering Board with SD Card We just received the following e-mail from William Chang:

"I am a IT reporter and have just attended an SD (Secure Digital) plug-in seminar held by Palm Co. in Hong Kong. I have taken two pictures of an engineering board which I believe to be the Palm m505. The board has a 16-bit true color reflective TFT display and we can see an SD card slot beside it.

"I am not sure the device is running a Palm OS4.0 but it works well with an SD memory card, and the card-info icon will show up when you plug in the SD card (yes, the same ICON which appears on the previous picture of the m505).

Engineering Board Showing Movie "The people from Palm Co. also showed us a movie-player running on that device. The display looks better than the Palm IIIc and the brightness is much more acceptable compared to the Japanese color version of the Clie 500c.

"The SD plug-in seminar will also held in Taiwan and Singapore during the next few days."

More rumors and information on the m505, including a possible picture of the case, are available here:

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Nate @ 2/6/2001 12:30:26 PM #
Oh man, I can't wait to get my hands on one. It looks soooo sweet!

RE: drool
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 12:33:32 PM #
I can't wait for them to come out...BUT I'm sure we can expect it from Palm, when they do come out they will have a very hefty price... It will be interesting to see if it will out price the Visor Prism and even some of the other PPC and other PDA's.

RE: drool
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 3:23:46 AM #
I guess it will be about $575 - $600. probably $100 + a little more then the Prism. Because it seems that palms are always about 100 more than Visors but the Prism doesn't have the size this one will have. As long as it has a bright screen so it can be seen clearly in the dark I'll buy it but if not I'll wait till ARM is introduced.

RE: drool
Ed @ 2/7/2001 11:41:51 AM #
I'm sticking with my earlier statement that the color version will debut in the U.S. at about $500 and the monochrome at about $400.

Palm Infocenter
RE: drool
Nate @ 2/8/2001 12:03:15 PM #
Absolutely. I thought $450 was more likely, but now that I think about it, they will definitley want to charge $500 for it because they can. Later it'll drop $50. It won't be higher than $500 though, because they still have to compete with the Visor and the iPaq, and pricing it at $550 to $600 would be way out of the park. All new PDAs top out at $500 because serious market research has shown that people will not pay more than that.


I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 12:33:25 PM #
nice indeed, but how long does it run with lithium-polymere batteries? And by the way, are we going to by the palm m605 with larger display (soft-graffiti) next year?

RE: wait...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 12:50:01 PM #
Yup, I agree. Battery life seems to be the real issue here...

RE: wait...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 1:51:50 PM #
just a side: the III series will likely be called the 300 series, the V series is the 500 series, i'm guessing next fall (Carl hinted at a new built in wireless model) we're looking at the 700 series (not 600).

with the 100 series already out, Palm's sticking to the odd numbers, again.

RE: wait...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 1:53:18 PM #
Cant wait for the M907
It will have upgradable dual processors on-board and most likely a built in pDVD/xWidia player. Palm will also discontinue graffiti for a voice-recognition system (initially Am Eng and Italian) while graffiti (renamed to sumo-ink which is rediculous I think - hope they come up with something better!) will only be used for Japanese, Thai, and Chinese. Release Feb 2002.

What about audio???

I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 12:59:29 PM #
A movie player running on a Palm? Seems interesting, but there is just one thing missing................where the hell is the sound???? Are we still going to have to suffer with analog beeps and clicks, or will Palm devices finally output real audio?

RE: What about audio???
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 12:19:34 PM #
Palms can already play "real" audio with the right software. Sure, the sound is crappy because the speaker is designed to only make beeps and clicks, but it works. ;-)
TealMovie apparently plays audio with movies that support it. There's also an old program called "Wave" or something like that, that you can use to play wav files on a Palm (after a quick header conversion on the desktop).
I've done it, but unless Palm changes the speaker to be more robust, don't think it will be that great. Though, all they REALLY need to do is provide a headphone jack. hehe

RE: What about audio???
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 1:36:45 PM #
...or at least authorize us to play video with a good quality sound with a SD-MP3 player...
It could be really good if these MP3-players authorize to connect a SD-RAM:
-65536 colors.
-Good quality sound.
-A movie on a great data space...

It's a dream...

RE: What about audio???
Rusty @ 2/7/2001 10:26:04 PM #
Well, I just received my advance replacement Palm Vx and the speaker on that is louder than any other Palm I have ever heard, even the m100. It was "delayed" for 2 weeks because they were waiting for parts. It's possible that they are now using the new m505 speakers in the referbished Vx's.

RE: What about audio???
Nate @ 2/8/2001 11:57:02 AM #
Audio is a good question. I seriously doubt that they will have a speaker and headphone jack in the new model, just because of the reports that say that there won't be MP3 support until OS 5. My guess is that they will have an add-on MP3 player that could provide storage and audio-out for movies played on the m505. Alternately, they could have a headphone jack/mp3 player at the other end, connecting to the sync port like the Palm V MIDI player sled does.

battery life on current color handhelds

I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 1:05:40 PM #
what's battery life like on the IIIc and the Prism now?

RE: battery life on current color handhelds
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 1:40:12 PM #
It doesn't matter, just remember to drop your palm in the charging cradel every other night or so. I have gone for days with out recharging, and I am a power user. I also have the auto recharger and plug in my palm while I drive to work in the morning and I always have a full charge

RE: battery life on current color handhelds
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 2:18:05 PM #
Well, put it this way. On _ALL_ units. If you put a new charge, full mind you, whether its battery or Lithium Ion and NEVER use the unit, it should last about 2 months.

"Average use" of a rechargable unit, color not, should have enough life in the battery to last approximately 25-35 days. "Average use" qualifies as a couple hours a day TOTAL. Use of applications that use sound or do a lot of graphical changes (games mostly) will drain the battery much faster.

But as the previous poster mentioned, simply always keep it in the cradle when you can when the unit is not in use and you will never have problems with the charge.

Palm Tech Employee

RE: battery life on current color handhelds
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 3:01:04 PM #
Palm Tech Employee - I own a Prism and I can't even imagine getting 25-35 days of battery life while using it 1-2 hours/day. Not even close. That said, I have no problem with the rechargeable batteries. As someone said, when you do your daily hotsync (and if you don't hotsync at least once a day, you DEFINITELY should start!) just leave it in the cradle and extra ten minutes. You'll never be low on power.

Nice screen!

mikecane @ 2/6/2001 1:24:39 PM #
That is quite a nice screen. I wonder how pixelated it will be in person, tho? The IIIc and Prisms are too pixelated for me. Can't imagine video on those. mc

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 2:01:49 PM #
Pixelation is due to a number of factors.

Namely resolution and color depth. Color depth helps alot as it allows more blending, which can reduce the appearance of pixelation. 16 bit color gives you 65536 colors vs the IIIc's what? 16 color? I can't remember.

I'm not sure if the resolution has changed up from the 160x160 its been for so long, but in any case, its going to be much better then the IIIC.

Palm Tech Employee

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 2:45:34 PM #
I think the Palm IIIc does 256 colors. Does anyone know if the m505 will have a faster processor? The IIIc seems to me to be slowwer than the normal Palms. I messed with the Prism and was really impressed with the power and speed it could do even with color running.

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 3:10:29 PM #
Think they will use same cpu as the prism.
and simular screen..maybee better...Carlis

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 5:56:21 PM #
why don't you guys try clicking on the 2 links at the bottom of this story. it leads to past stories that discuss CPU and other information.

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 12:53:51 PM #
...concerning 65536 colors: I guess you will find this picky, but neither the Visor Prism nor the new Palm m505 will be able to display 65536 colors at the same time:

160x160 pixels = 25600 pixels = max. 25600 colors

Which doesn't really matter 'cause the main point about the m505 is the Palm V form factor combined with color plus an expansion slot.

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 11:15:46 PM #
The number of pixels has NOTHING to do with the number of displayable colors. Providing 16 bits of framebuffer memory per pixel is what allows EACH PIXEL to take on any one of 65536 different colors.

RE: Nice screen!
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/8/2001 6:17:37 AM #
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 11:15:46 PM wrote:

>The number of pixels has NOTHING to do with the
>number of displayable colors. Providing 16 bits of
>framebuffer memory per pixel is what allows EACH
>PIXEL to take on any one of 65536 different colors.

Exactly. But you will never be able to display 65.536 colors AT THE SAME TIME (due to the limitation to 25.600 pixels). Which was my original point - I think this discussion about 65536 colors is rather academical. The main point about the m505 is the Palm V form factor + color + expansion slot. (Plus the range of Palm applications, of course...)

I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 2:42:53 PM #



I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 3:49:00 PM #
Does anyone know when this will be available for sale in the U.S.?


I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 4:53:57 PM # late March/early April...bummer

It's a pity...

I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 5:09:46 PM #
...still no OLED Display. But the inovative days at Palm Inc. are gone. This nice technology would solve the common battery life problem....

RE: It's a pity...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 5:31:43 PM #
But hey, the screen is at least reflective. At least you can still use the device in sunlight!

Very excited to see this come to market!

RE: It's a pity...
Nate @ 2/6/2001 6:50:52 PM #
OLED not ready for prime time. And what innovation are you referring to? The original Pilot used all the same basic technology available to everyone else at the time - the difference was the software and the pen input (which was rare back then, and mfrs stayed away because of the failure of the Newton). Hardware-wise, it's not like Palm has been a real ground breaker. They take existing technology and put to excellent use, rather than trying to stuff all the latest and best into their next handheld.

RE: It's a pity...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 11:58:39 PM #
Are you sure it isn't an OLED screen? how can you tell?

RE: It's a pity...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 7:27:55 PM #
What is OLED? Are you talking about OELDs (organic electroluminescence displays)?
If so, you will have to wait until at least 2003, according to this article:

RE: It's a pity...
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 7:53:24 PM #
nope, that's OEL made by Sony. OLED is made by Kodak. (an alliance of Palm Inc.)

No Backlight or Sidelight

I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 8:21:31 PM #
Doesn't look like the M505 will have any backlight or sidelight. This will be a major disappointment. I have an iPAQ and I think Palm is using the same screen in the M505. Not near as clear or easy to read as the Vx without the sidelight on. It looks good in direct sunlight, but inside it is awful. Many IIIc buyers purchased their device due to the bright background and easier readability over the non-color palms. If the M505 looks like the iPAQ w/o sidelight, then readability is worse than the non-color palms.

RE: No Backlight or Sidelight
Ed @ 2/7/2001 2:26:10 PM #
What makes you think there is no back or side light? The Waterworld picture ( looks like it has some kind of internal light but I could be wrong. Being able to light up the screen in a low-light situation is such an obvious necessity and one included in all Palm models for years that I would be amazed if they left it out of this one.

Palm Infocenter
RE: No Backlight or Sidelight
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/7/2001 3:53:13 PM #
Why in the world would you think that a backlight would not be included? Even the M100 has one. It's a staple feature. The one in the photo doesn't [appear] to have one, and so what, it's a development/test board only. Should we assume from the photos that it would not also include stylus silos? A casing?

RE: No Backlight or Sidelight
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/9/2001 11:37:28 AM #
Including a sidelight will definitely increase the thickness of the device. If they are shooting for a V form factor, the sidelight may be difficult to include. Battery life also becomes a major concern. The iPaq can operate for roughly 10-12 hours without sidelight use. However, if you turn it on and keep it realitively bright, that basically cuts the battery life in half.

Every picture of the "new Palm color display" I have seen has not shown it with a sidelight at all. It's really anyone's guess until the actual device hits the streets.

Palm SD Seminar in HK

I.M. Anonymous @ 2/6/2001 9:56:39 PM #
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