WSJ on the Rubinstein Influence at Palm

Jon RubensteinA new Wall Street Journal article has just appeared to confirm the job cuts at Palm while shedding some light on the slew of problems facing the beleaguered mobile computing firm. The piece is definitely a must-read for both fans and critics of Palm as it reveals that the long-sluggish handheld manufacturer is finally attempting to mount a serious attempt to regain lost market share.

Dated December 13th, "Apple's 'Podfather' Now Aims to Revive a Wilting Palm" is written by Pui-Wing Tam. The piece offers some interesting insight into the final days of the Centro's development cycle as well as the sweeping changes occurring these days at Palm Inc. According to the WSJ, Jon Rubinstein, just recently arrived at Palm, wasted no time in making his presence felt. He requested several late-stage running changes be made to the device and ordered Palm employees to work more closely with the device's ODM partner. The WSJ piece then goes on to state that the Centro shipped to Sprint a month earlier than expected and has been the recipient of some of the strongest reviews of any Palm product in recent memory.

Palm has weathered a series of buggy products, distressing financial news, layoffs, product launch delays, and public questioning of the company's ability to continue as an independent entity in today's crowded wireless marketplace. But the WSJ article is the first widely-available report of Mr. Rubinstein's (or rather, the "Podfather") initial efforts to stem the losses at Palm and revamp the company's engineering efforts.

A further tantalizing tidbit mentioned in the article is the possibility of a Palm-branded 12-key phone that could either be a larger-screened iPhone-style variant from Palm or a lower-end "feature phone" as has long been rumored to be in the pipeline from Palm. The long-criticized Foleo subnotebook is briefly mentioned by the WSJ as a direct casualty of Rubinstein's revamping efforts.

2008 looks to largely be a transitional year for Palm, as Mr. Rubinstein continues to work his magic amidst only a handful of rumored products expected to launch in the first half and the WSJ piece unfortunately does not give any hints as to what Palm's next product will be, nor when the first device crafted entirely under the guidance of Rubinstein is likely to hit the market.

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Uh huh

SeldomVisitor @ 12/14/2007 1:28:39 PM # Q
RE: Uh huh
numlock @ 12/14/2007 1:30:53 PM # Q
You could just copy and paste the small sentence you typed at Yahoo instead of linking to a 10 word message board post.
RE: Uh huh
Admin @ 12/14/2007 1:33:13 PM # Q
Agreed, next time that may be a good idea SV. Then I also would not have to create a tinyurl for the long urls that mess with the formatting. thx
Now-OT: RE: Uh huh
SeldomVisitor @ 12/14/2007 1:34:46 PM # Q
Could have, however that post linked to was part of a much larger thread and "Truth in Posting" says post a link rather than some minimal words!

You got a problem with clickety-clicking?


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Flip flip flip

mikecane @ 12/14/2007 5:46:52 PM # Q
It all smells of flip to me.

(BTW, Mr Murdoch, tear down that pay wall!)

Palm didn't detail WHO they jettisoned recently. Could it really be they killed the new OS? Or the Foleo workers? Or what was left of the PDA group?

Maybe all that's really left is current product support (mfg, sales, mktg) and that's just to make it all the more attractive to, ahem, PALM OFF the IP to a buyer who will line EP's pockets (and, ahem, PALMs).


RE: Flip flip flip
mikecane @ 12/14/2007 5:47:16 PM # Q
And oh yeah: Colligan -- RESIGN ALREADY!

RE: Flip flip flip
hkklife @ 12/14/2007 6:34:52 PM # Q

That's your best theory yet! I mean, that 'un just REEKS of a classic TVoRism!


Late '07/early '08: Dump the remaining PDA inventory on the market to clear stocks and bring a few $ in to the coffers

Q1-Q3 '08: Flood the market with a bunch of "me-too" rebranded WinMob devices + the 800w (whose design is already in the an). Hope there's enough equity left in the Palm/Treo branding to keep sales strong amidst continued cost-cutting

Q3: Announce the new OS is still on track but won't ship until spring '09 on a new flagship device.

Q4/end of '08: Sell the remnants of the company (essentially the carrier agreements & Palm's assorted IP) to ________________?

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

RE: Flip flip flip
mikecane @ 12/14/2007 8:05:57 PM # Q
Hey, new guys are in the mix now. Guys who don't mess around.

RE: Flip flip flip
VampireLestat @ 12/14/2007 9:28:52 PM # Q
Let's wait to see what this Rubinstein guy is all about.
His 12 key phone BS is a bad start. More phone-centric devices are not the solution.
Palm is supposed to be a mobile computing company with Palm OS.
Feature phone makers are a dime a dozen.

RE: Flip flip flip
VampireLestat @ 12/14/2007 9:57:04 PM # Q
HP just sent me an email informing me that the
HP iPAQ 100 is now available.

jeez, Dec 14th... talk about being late to ride the Christmas sales period.

I might get one though, just for fun.
Anyone else considering?

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