Microsoft declares war on Palm

Microsoft, the company known to abuse their monopoly powers, launched their third manifestation of their windows CE line today. You can check out a press release here. Already, MS is taking cheap shots at Palm. They had the nerve to print a full page ad in the USA Today attacking Palm (Click the read story button to see it). The only new hardware model that is sporting CE 3 is the Hewlett Packard Jornada 545, PDABuzz has a review. Don't expect Palm to take this lying down. They're sitting on a fresh load of cash after the IPO and new devices are expected in the future from 3com, Sony, and Nokia. Palm also has a big lead in the handheld wireless sector an area where Microsoft is still lagging. UPDATE: Mike W has posted a great rebuttal to Microsoft's ad campaign.

Microsoft's cheap shot at Palm

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Pocket PC

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 1:25:01 PM #
Jeesh, lighten up. Why is this ad a "cheap shot" ? Because you don't agree with it ? I'm a happy Palm user, I just bought my second one. But I still thought the MS ad was funny.

And what does the MS monopoly in OSs on Intel hardware have to do with anything ? If anyone has a PDA monopoly its Palm. You should be glad there is competition, to keep Palm on its toes.

RE: Pocket PC It is a cheap shot
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 2:20:13 PM #
If you can't support your products by unless you blatantly take a cheap shopt at the competitor it's pretty jr. high pathetic and screams loser
RE: Pocket PC
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 2:20:23 PM #
I agree.
I bought my Palm BECAUSE it was "simple". For "simple" read light, easy to use, and 1/4 the price of the WinCE "complex" (here read bloated, difficult, expensive) hand helds. I don't think Palm has much to worry about, but maybe it will help keep them alert and responsive.
RE: Pocket PC it is a cheap shot
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 2:21:12 PM #
if you can't support your product wothout blatant cheap shots at the competitors it is really jr high school behavior and screams loser
RE: Pocket PC
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 3:15:42 PM #
Oh grow up. Everyone thought it was cool when Apple blasted IBM but they whine about Microsoft doing the same thing. Palm has shown for years that they don't have the slightest idea how to innovate so I don't expect to see them compete anytime soon.
RE: Pocket PC @ 4/20/2000 10:49:29 PM #
Amen. It's not a cheap shot at all. It's using humour as a market tactic, and it made me look twice; which, if I remember anything I was taught about marketing, is one of the main goals.

(Wow, and I'm the first person in response to this particular line of comment to use a name other than anonymous.)

- pix.

RE: Pocket PC vs Palm
Howard @ 4/28/2000 7:00:11 AM #
I believed in Palm and even have complied a recommendation report for a company with 150 employees to adopt the PalmPilot instead of WindowsCE machine in 1997.

Well, DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE Micro$oft anyway! They have excellent marketing strategies, infamous track records of crushing its enemies like internet browser companies and utilizing its Windows OS market share to bundle whatever they want you to have. Meanwhile, RIM's BlackBerry and Psion's Series 7 are also attractive solutions to certain markets. So Palm MUST NOT sit there and keep thinking, "If we make it, they will come!" It is time to be innovative again.

RE: Pocket PC
Ahmie @ 4/29/2000 3:36:16 PM #
Yes, Palm has been a little behind in inovating, but they did ONE really SMART thing a heck of a lot sooner than Micro$oft did - they opened their code so OTHERS can innovate for them - lowering the R&D costs for their company, and hense lowering the cost of the actual product to the end user... you can take your happy little Windows computer running Internet Exploder 5.5Beta right over to's wonderful Palm OS section and download anything that catches your fancy, or even learn fairly quickly how to make whatever program you need, and put it on your Palm (or in my case, Handspring Visor) all in a matter of about 10 minutes (or if you have cablemodem... )... The M$ machines are a heck of a lot more powerful, processor wise, but don't run a lick faster than the PalmOS because they bog the darn things down with all the typical M$ stuff that they've been pulling since the 80s, most of which we don't use, and they don't let us pick and chose what is on our own (limited storage capacity) handheld very easily. If they innovate THAT little piece of annoyance, then MAYBE they'll compete with Palm, but until then they're wasting their processing power.
RE: Pocket PC
I.M. Anonymous @ 1/17/2001 11:02:54 PM #
yeah, to keep palm on its toes... so they release a new palm hardware every 6 months just like microsoft eh?

ComputerWorld says "PocketPC is no 'Palm killer' "

Ed @ 4/19/2000 3:08:16 PM #" CLASS=NEWS>
On the other hand, they also say the whole battle is moot because web-enabled phones will eat both Palm's and CE's lunch. But what do they know anyway?
RE: ComputerWorld says
Ahmie @ 4/29/2000 3:43:19 PM #
Yes, the cell phones may eat CE & POS' lunch in the web/email department, but the chances of the phone companies all getting together and 1)making the phones as simply USABLE as the Palm/CE devices currently are and 2)convincing programers to write useful utilities and games for YET ANOTHER platform is low... more likely, various cell phone makers will wind up using one of the existing OSs (probably Palm since it has lower requirements) so that the users have access to all of the prexisting software available on the net, as well as new fun stuff. ZDTV was showing some interesting new developments (I believe they are available on" CLASS=NEWS TARGET=_NEW> but you may have to do some looking around for them... not a bad site to browse tho!) in combining what are basically handheld computers with another program (and a neat new touchscreen technology) to allow you to dial the phone, but the phone buttons can be turned off giving the user access to that screen realestate for other applications.

How about losing your bias?

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 3:13:02 PM #
What a juvenile statement about Microsoft and the Pocket PC. You should be glad there is some competition. 3com has show for years that they are content to do minimal improvments while charging top dollar. I don't see them competing with the Pocket PC anytime soon.
RE: How about losing your bias?
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 3:27:04 PM #
This is after all a Palm site!
Bias, of course there's Bias Microsoft is the ememy no matter what you do in this industry.
RE: How about losing your bias?
BobVBH @ 4/19/2000 10:43:41 PM #
Have to agree...there is little support for the loyal troops by 3Com, i.e. upgrade memory for PIII or the posting of OS 3.5. Remember love is only blind.
RE: How about losing your bias?
Ahmie @ 4/29/2000 3:49:29 PM #
Eh... byte it and get a Handspring Visor - best of both worlds - lower price, more expandability, PalmOS AND it comes in pretty colors!! :)

M$ is desperate. What else is new?

I.M. Anonymous @ 4/19/2000 4:49:58 PM #
Just keep in mind that if M$ knew in their black hearts that they had THE Palm-killer, they wouldn't need to stoop to such things as displaying the IIIc in that ad in Black&White, much less their comparisons with Palm Organizers that compare features with the "out of the box" disclaimer in 2-point type!

Besides, 70% if businesses are still dedicated to PalmOS development...

RE: M$ is desperate. What else is new?
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/20/2000 8:19:11 PM #
What you apparently don't realize is that CE is still beating Palm in vertical markets because of its larger screen and abilitytoaccept add-ons. So its not really true that business is all about Palm.
RE: M$ is desperate. What else is new?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/25/2000 12:18:46 AM #
Uhh...what does a larger screen have to do with verticle markets? And where have you been lately...Palm Pilots, TRG Pros and (especially) Visors all have add-on capabilities.

The businesses that ARE on CE tend to be only using Windows to start with. It's a no-brainer to write OK software on the CE device using Visual Basic or something along those lines. Basically, it's easier for the developer (though not necessarily true for the user).

Table pounding

Brad H. @ 4/19/2000 10:24:22 PM #
Lawyers have an old saying: "If the law is on your side, pound on the law. If the facts are on your side, pound on the facts. If nothing is on your side, pound on the table." Sounds to me like Microsoft is beating its table for all it's worth. Haven't these guys learned anything from that little anti-trust problem they are having? I'm all for competition in the marketplace. This, however, is not competition. It is a biligerent attach. If Microsoft can't stop taking a "scorched earth" policy towards anything it views as competition, then some of my friends at DOJ (who regularly read this site) should reconsider potentially dismantling the beast.

Brad H.

RE: War on Microsoft
Ed @ 4/20/2000 11:39:41 AM #
This is laugh out loud funny. Thanks! It is a perfect rebuttal to that ridiculous ad that M$ put in the USA Today.

Palm vs. CE

Eric Garrido @ 4/20/2000 10:02:57 AM #
I try to be an unbiased person when it comes to new technology. When new things come out, I read the reviews, but I don't know anything for sure until I actually try the product. This goes for handheld devices. I've used both Windows CE and Palm OS devices, and I must say that I like Palm better in the areas where they share common tasks, such as todo lists, simple memo pad, etc. But nothing beats Windows CE (one with a keyboard) when it comes to wordprocessing, or simple internet. I carry both types of devices, a Palm V and an IBM z50.

As for stating that either company is a monopoly: I don't think *that* is a fair shot. Although Microsoft has been ruled a monopoly by the court (which I disagree with), they are not a monopoly in handheld devices. Neither is Palm. I think I saw I figure for around 70% of the market is owned by Palm, certainly then, there is still a lot of free market for other competitors.

In any case, why should any company be penalized for making good products? I, and many others, like the browser integration. The same goes for a lot of other products Microsoft churns out. And the same for Palm. As you read from this site, the DOJ is possibly going to target Palm as a monopoly as well. I still think the make good products and that's why they have that much of the market. The only thing the DOJ is doing is making quality products hard to come by.

But that's just my opinion.

Palm vs. CE: Waaaay out of context.
I.M. Anonymous @ 4/20/2000 2:46:07 PM #
Speaking as a user of both platforms, for most useful cuntionality, the Palm wins hands down. My CE devices (Nino 510, Workpad z50) are used more for entertainment/web surfing, network troubleshooting.

The issue of whether M$ is a Monopoly has nothing to do with the quality of their products (usually mediocre, occasionally pretty good) but rather the methods that they used to grab market share.

This is no clear-cut case of all consumers using their dollars to vote for the "Best Product at the Best Price", for if that was the case, M$ would lose bigtime. Look at it from outside the perspective of the consumer marketplace. Most of their business comes from vendors/OEM's, not you and me. And that's where they play dirty with backroom deals and strongarm tactics.

Besides, go back and read the original article about the DOJ. It says that Scarbourough asked Klein about other possible targets. Klein did NOT name Palm. Scarborough brought up Palm and AOL as possible examples. Duh!

geez calm down ppl

piloteer @ 4/28/2000 4:15:39 AM #
this is like some sort of wholy war! geez relaz ppl. so what if M$ tries to do anything. it's nothing new, i'm on palms side and i love there products, i also admire the stuff PPC has but you don't hear me complaining about the adds. i kinda like the add. Palm should do one as well :P well cept in colour. :P
but lets face facts here. M$ is pushing palm to finaly ditching that stupid dragon ball CPU which is the weakest part of the hardware(OS is rock solid as far as i am concered or care. never crashed on me yet, unlike older CE's that crash in 5 mins of me using them.) they are now suposedly going strong arm. why? cuz of PPC. if anything M$ finaly sealed the fait of there doomed CE platform altogether. Heck even the WEBTV devices are rumered to be running a unix type OS insted of there CE OS like M$ would want you to belive(maily cuz the programers gave up hope trying to get windows to work @ all so they went unix, hence it kinda works)

as for these adds, heck i love them i'll even go as far as to ask M$ to bring em all on. It would help the DOJ see how M$ intimidates others into there favor. then split them up, and the market will obviosly kill the apps section(could you possibly see anyone actulay buy'n office2k? that thing is the worst and most bloated pice of $#!+ i've ever seen in my years of computing)
then M$ can prob get back to making half decent OS's like they did with DOS. IT may not have been pretty but dang it, you never got a freaking blue screen! :P

and don't start wtih the win2k stuff. i've been running win2k since the first beta's, and now i'm on the final and it's still crashing. you want an OS go lynix. I've got a 486 linyx server that just refuses to die no matter how hard we even try to kill it! heck sometimes for fun the guyz here just try to kill it. it's been up for 4 yearS? 5 years shoot, i can't even remember it's been up for that long without rebooting even ONCE!

when you or anyone else can show me a OS that takes sheer punishment to the point it just barly chugs along without crashing give me a call. i'll stick to linyx and my VMS system(BTW the VMS has been online and running for 10 years BEAT THAT NT/win2k!)

Palm's are good for 1 thing...

Jim D. (E-100 BABY) @ 6/2/2000 5:52:27 PM #
Adding bulk to your garbarge can. These devices are way over-rated. I bought my handheld for just as much as a Good Palm 3 would cosr. I got my Cassiopeia for $250 brand new from Best Buy. I do enjoy listening to MP3`s WMA`s and watching some good shows on the Mobile Video Player. I also enjoy the friendly 65k color display when i turn it on. I did think the Palm`s were neat until late 97. That was when PDA`s came out with some real color and multimedia abilities. The Palm is a rip off and I think the WinCE platform is much better. A few crashes a month big deal. Does it hurt you that much to take 3-4 seconds to reset your device. By the way, where is the the program on Palm`s to write up CAD designs, maybe I also missed the one with the 65k colors. I havent found a program to open up my digital camera pictures on the Palm either. I didnt notice where to put any compact flash Cards. I`m not sure but I dont think you can get Doom to run on Palms either. I did hear the new IIIc does run color games. But color games in 256 colors were cool in 98. I want 65k colors in my games. By the way the 17mhz Palm can't run Doom. Ouch 17mhz. Wait a minute..isn't my TI-83 Plus processor as fast as or faster than that when overclocked slightly...yes it is.

To sum this up....Palm Sucks and is an over-rated piece of crap. WinCE kicks ass. We love you Mr. Gates. Well not really, your software is just sweet

RE: Palm's are good for 1 thing...
SnarfTek @ 6/19/2000 1:21:39 PM #
Do I smell burning crack? Or is this just another brainwashed M$ l00zer? M$ loves to
sucker people like this d00d with fancy colors and yet-still closed-source bloatware.
And what is this about slow processors? ;) plams are just as fast as PPC or faster scince
M$ puts all that extra crap in their OS. I bet your lovn' you battery life eh? hehe


RE: Palm's are good for 1 thing...
Tim @ 6/22/2000 7:38:05 PM #
I started using CE and changed to Palm, If all you have to do is play Games all day then your right, CE is better, BUT for people who really need a small PDA for Contact management the CE format sucks, You cant customize the fields in outlook on CE (A Microsoft Prod.) But I can customize the Palms Fields and have unlimited space for data, and it Syncs Flawlessly with Outlook Desk top. Microsoft should have woke up and had the CE be Biz Friendly, The only thing I think its good for is to compete with your kids game boy!!!
RE: Palm's are good for 1 thing...
I.M. Anonymous @ 12/23/2000 6:52:46 PM #
competition is good for the consumer. palm has been sitting on their @ss a lot so MS declaring a holy war on them if fine with me. the MS add was pretty funny anyway. both platforms IMO need to cater more to the low end user. none of these devices are going to be a laptop replacement anytime soon. what they need to build is a unit like the m100 at a cost of about $80. seems like all these companies are spending a lot of cash to make these small high power devices for markets that don't want to pay the price they're charging.

RE: Palm's are good for 1 thing...
I.M. Anonymous @ 1/15/2001 10:17:12 PM #
Microsoft will make the handheld computer market suck as much as the desktop computers are.

The thing is that when you buyed a palm in 1996, and you haven't updated it, it may be a little old, but it is still ok. When you buy a desktop computer/laptop, in 6 months, the damned thing is as old as a fossil.

The beauty of a market not dominated by microsoft is that your hardware won't become old in 6 months.

If microsoft gets a bigger marketshare, or if palm feels the heat, all of the palm computers will also become old every 6 months, and in a few years, you'll hear about palms/pocket pc's with pentium 6 processors :(
OH! But I forgot to say they will crash every 6 minutes, and that the "reset" button will be used as often as the power button.

Don't buy microsoft

RE: Palm's are good for 1 thing...
Altema @ 5/27/2001 10:36:54 PM #
Well, it's been a while since this post first came out, and the Pocket PC has had more than ample chance to prove itself. I typically see both devices at work in the same environments, but I've noticed something about how they are purchased and used.
1. People with excess cash usually go with the Pocket PC if it is their first PDA.
2. The persons who purchase Palm OS devices usually become productive in the first two weeks.
3. The persons who purchase Pocket PC devices usually spend two to four months becoming familiar with their devices.
4. Existing Palm OS users will upgrade for either memory, form factor, or color, but usually move to another Palm OS device instead of switching platforms.
5. The Pocket PC users have been more vocal in talking about their devices, but spend very little time actually doing work on their devices compared to the Palm OS users (something for employers to consider).
6. Although Pocket PC users will talk about having the "real" Excel and Word, they never mention what their upgrade path would be if they need functions like cell locking, charting, or advanced color support like MiniCalc for the Palm.
7. If a Palm OS user is beaming info to a Pocket PC, and it does not work, everyone in the room usually thinks there is something wrong with the Palm.
8. If anything touching the topic of battery life is mentioned (hey Fred, the batteries in my IIIxe only lasted 5 weeks last time, is there something wrong?), then Pocket PC users will suddenly look busy doing something else.

In retrospect, I guess we were all expecting the Pocket PC to be a smash, and I guess it has been in it's own little circles. It is a much better machine for playing music (I would not even bother on most Palms... my ears would be insulted), and the multi media capabilities are nice. But therein lies the difference. The strong point of Pocket PC is it's entertainment value, and these aspects can make Palm OS devices appear boring if you are not aware of the multi media content or high end games for Palms. The strong point of Palm OS devices is that they were built for usability. Take a look again at the learning curve mentioned above. It was rather amusing at a recent business meeting when the CEO asked me for my number. I beamed it to his Palm, and we were back to other things in the usual five seconds. Then a friend asked me to beam it to his Pocket PC, which took five minutes of poking around on his end while I waited patiently. One Palm OS device is usually equal in productivity to three Pocket PC's when it comes down to the actual work accomplished.

Why has the Pocket PC not devoured everything else in sight despite the advanced hardware? The reason is simple; Microsoft does not know one cruicial factor... "The purpose of a Personal Digital Assistant is to make life easier, not more complicated and difficult".

Paul Campbell