IBM Begins Offering c500 and c505

When Palm first announced the m500 series, they said IBM would soon be offering versions of the same devices. The WorkPad c500 and c505 have now appeared on the IBM webstore. These are essentially the same as the Palm models except they have black housings instead of Palm's metallic silver. They sell for the same prices the m500 series do: $400 and $450 respectively.

They ship with a copy of IBM's DB2 Everyplace Personal Edition.

IBM has long offered rebranded versions of Palm's handhelds, always with black housings. They are currently offering a Vx clone called the WorkPad c3 for $300. Palm is an OEM for IBM WorkPads.

In a related story, and now show the m505 as available for same-day shipping while the Palm Store no longer shows the m505 as backordered.

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On the Web: Thanks to Michael Pantoja for the tip. -Ed

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Missing details on IBM site; case color typo

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 12:35:54 PM #
The IBM order pages at the above URLs do not even mention that the devices have a SD/MMC slot.
I assume this is a mistake on IBM's part, and not accurate since they are supposed to be "clones" of the m50x series.

Also, Both Palm and IBM use black cases now - arctic ice is a Handspring color isn't it?

RE: case color typo
Ed @ 5/16/2001 12:46:29 PM #
I have the bad habit of using "case" and "housing" interchangeably. I've changed the word in the article but if that isn't clear, the actual unit itself is black, not the metallic silver of the m500 and m505.

I think I remember Palm calling the m500 series "arctic ice" but you could be right and I can't find a reference to it. In any case, it was confusing so I dropped it from the article.


News Editor
Palm Infocenter

RE: Missing details on IBM site; case color typo
bcombee @ 5/16/2001 1:44:03 PM #
Arctic White is one of the colors of the m100 faceplates. See

I'd argue that the m500 and m505 are closer to silver mist, as seen at

RE: Missing details on IBM site; case color typo
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 2:55:05 PM #
they both have the mmc slots...

RE: Missing details on IBM site; case color typo
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/18/2001 7:09:25 AM #
direct link to announcement letter:

did they include 505 contrast adjusmtment? (just kidding...)

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 2:26:07 PM #
ibm would have been smart to check out the two m5xx models first and tweek the screens for at least 3 level adjustments. if they can build a multi-gig hard drive that's the size of a dime, they should be able to siwng a brightness control.
being a new 505 owner, i was happy with the screen at first, but now feel like it is dim...
is someone working on a brightness hack out there that works?

RE: did they include 505 contrast adjusmtment? (just kidding...)
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 2:36:12 PM #
I'm sure Steve Bush is...

New release of Lotus EasySync Pro comes with these

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 2:55:34 PM #
the best thing about these models is the lotus easysync pro software, a must if you use lotus notes as your email and pim solution... it includes unreleased technology from extended systems...

No wonder the m505 is available...

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 2:56:48 PM #
"In a related story, and now show the m505 as available for same-day shipping while the Palm Store no longer shows the m505 as backordered. "

That's because most people realize for $50 more you can get the Sony Clie which is a lot better or even an iPaq!!!

Despite the OS, I'd rather have an iPaq then an m505.

To be honest the m505 is only worth $350 to me.

RE: No wonder the m505 is available...
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 3:36:36 PM #
I agree. It will be interesting in a few months when Palm has to report to the shareholders how their m50x series are selling. They might have a big headache on their hands, with the Clie coming out and all that.

RE: No wonder the m505 is available...
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 4:34:01 PM #
When the new models were in limited quantities, Palm was criticized for not meeting consumer demands. Now that they have caught up with their supply problem, we should give Palm get some credit for making sure their products are in stock.

RE: No wonder the m505 is available...
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 8:01:51 PM #
HA! you really believe that palm has enough m505's in stock?

RE: No wonder the m505 is available...
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 11:12:14 PM #
I bet in a few months, palm will have way too many m505's on their hands! There are too many people who don't like the screen

RE: No wonder the m505 is available...
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 10:08:54 AM #
It seems that either Palm has the m505 in stock or not, people who do not like the screen will keep bashing it. It there ends up to be a surplus, then that's great for us consumers. Prices will be competitive and there will be no outrageous bids on auction sites.

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 7:51:23 PM #
... why do some geeks feel it is necessary to fill us all in on how disappointed they are with the m505, and tell us just how wonderful the unreleased Sony product is? We all know how you feel -- and most of us don't care.

If a bigger, fatter, heavier package in exchange for all the bells and whistles suits you, go for it.

Me, I use my m505 for BUSINESS, in a multitude of lighting conditions, and I have been thrilled with its performance for these purposes. I have no desire to share photographs, browse the web, listen to music, or play games on my Palm. If and when I find that kind of time, I'll do something useful with it.

Get a life!

What's the point of these IBM PDA's?

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 3:35:10 PM #
IBM's models aren't any cheaper or different from Palm's, so what's the point in buying them?

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 4:09:27 PM #
1. Lotus Sync included
2. Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM
3. The black casing looks way cool.

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 6:21:46 PM #
i think not. there's really no difference if the pda is black or silver. they all run the same os!!

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 6:24:55 PM #
I just left a big financial services firm and they only bought IBM devices. Palm couldn't provide the level of support they wanted. No way in hell handspring could. So they went with big blue.

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
EGarrido @ 5/16/2001 7:03:53 PM #
Big Blue uses them as an e-Business Solution to many small and large businesses. They create hardware and software add-ons as well, rising to the needs of those companies. If they are to OEMed, it's cheaper for them to perform this task for businesses. As for selling them to consumers, they figure they might be able to make a buck by doing so. And I kinda like the black casing. I have a c3, and now an m505, but the black was pretty cool.

Eric Garrido
RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 7:06:27 PM #
2. Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM. That is it.

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 7:48:22 PM #
1. They're black
2. If you work for IBM (or maybe even own stock) they're probably cheaper :)

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 9:32:56 PM #
Amen to the cheaper, buddy. Nothing like staff discount to make new tech afforable. Of course, most IBM hardware is over-priced anyway, so the discount just brings it back to market level :-)

As for the difference, I don't know about these models, but their versions of the III and V had a couple of extra hardware hacks, but mostly it's the bundled software.

As someone else has pointed out, out main sales avenue for these are to big corporates as part of total e-business solutions. If we make them ourselves, we can offer larger discounts to pull the corportae customer in. The retail channel is a just a side-line to keep the turn-over up.

IM Anonymous, for obvious reasons....

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 12:25:15 AM #
What hardware hacks were installed on c3? The only difference I know between the c3 and Vx is the black case (obvious) and not-so-green screen background compared to Vx

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 9:03:55 AM #
there were no hardware hacks... same everything except for extra lotus software... my esteemed "colleague" is uninformed ;-)

RE: What's the point of these IBM PDA's?
PalmPowered @ 5/17/2001 9:47:10 AM #
To fill you in on a little history....IBM's reasoning for offering their own version of the Palm was that, at the time, it was felt that corporate America would be more likely to purchase such a device (which seemed new and radical at the time) if it had the name IBM emblazoned across the top of it. The WorkPad is sold only through IBM authorized dealers and is generally intended for large companies rather than the individual user. It is nice, however, that if charcoal gray or graphite doesn't float your boat or if it is just a situation where you have to have IBM on everything computerized, that you as an individual consumer can purchase one of these models. I would prefer the black case over the gray but when the new model came out, I was so impatient to get one in my hands that I didn't want to wait on Blue to get their model out. Also, the writer who said you won't get fired for buying IBM is probably right-I work for local government and an invoice with "IBM" on it would go through accounts payable with nary a glance. However, try buying something with "Palm" on it through the government and everybody thinks you are spending taxpayer bucks on a gizmo that has no practical application towards government work. I am personally glad IBM offers this product if for no other reason than the considerable acceptance and prestige of their name.


Power Up!

cool !

kim @ 5/16/2001 6:28:12 PM #
the black case look cool !

Boo to IBM

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 6:47:35 PM #
Is it just me or is IBM just cashing in on Palm's idea?I know I dislike (hate is too harsh a word) the m505 and would rather have the CLIČ (or É), even though I can't get it here in Canada and the drive to the nearest US mall, is 2½ hours away at Niagra Falls, NY, the point is why doesn't IBM knock off the other devices such as the Prism, the 330 and the Edge. All IBM does is recase the devices, throw in the Lotus crap, sells the device to chumps and says the c505 is their device! What pisses me off is the fact you can get any device, get a lisence(sp?) and resell a rebranded device?


P.S. I don't mean any offense to any possible c50x series owners; I'm just saying my opinion. If you have anything to say, go ahead...

Not a big deal.
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 10:13:26 PM #
Rebranding is common, whether it's cars, socks, or many other things (even my omnisky modem, a minstrel w/ an omnisky sticker + services). It's not like it isn't plain as day that the devices are really palms. IBM isn't trying to pretend they invented it - it's more to provide a source of palms to corporate customers w/ service too and they will sell them to employees, stockholders, & retail just b/c they have some. Palm wins b/c they sell more and IBM can fill a hold in their product line and sell services too. It's not really a big deal. The color change is probably part of the agreement.

Sony Clie

I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 7:24:54 PM #
I think many of people on this website fail to realize something about the sony clie. Nobody knows anything about it. Sure, you can all claim you and your friends know everything about it, and how it's superior to all other handhelds, but it's just not gonna be a success. I live in the bay area, and most retail chains don't carry sony handhelds. More stores have Casio handhelds than Sony ones. The best bet is to order off sonystyle, and I think people will feel nervous ordering a new handheld off the web. All kinds of people make posts that Palm will be reporting its sales, and they'll be low because of the sony. No, they won't. Businesses won't buy this handheld for employees, because it plays mp3's, comes with headphones to plug into it, and has only a limited number of business applications made for the screen. This handheld will bomb, just wait.

RE: Sony Clie
Coyote67 @ 5/16/2001 10:46:24 PM #
I think you got lost in the marketting. The Clie was never intended for corporations. From the get go, sony has been pimping the clie line for end users who want a multimedia handheld. They have no concern nor interest in the corporate or vertical markets. On the purchasing part, when Handspring first started selling, they only sold online, and they sold tons. Staples carries Clies, how much more retail can you get? I've seen them in best buy and Circuit City and I know Frys has them. Your not seeing the new Clie in stores becauses its not out yet.

OH my god...becky, look at her....Prism.
RE: Sony Clie
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/16/2001 11:47:43 PM #
Purchased the M505 12 days ago and I decided to put up with the dim screen, however when I saw the sony clie colored I returned my M505. In fact, my new sony should be in at the end of May.

RE: Sony Clie
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 8:59:24 AM #
One thing I have seen no comment on is what will one miss out on by having a Clie running OS 3.5 versus a 505 running 4.0. And will the Clie be upgradable to 4.0?

RE: Sony Clie
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 11:00:19 AM #
A moderate amount of skepticism is often a good thing.

While I don't fully agree with the above post's claim that the new Clie will "bomb," I tend to agree that it won't necessarily be the massive success that people claim. When Palm announced the m505, everyone thought it was the "IT" PDA, remember? Then the screen issues hit. Every PDA has its downside, and I'm sure the Sony will be no exception. Will the enhanced screen resolution and color result in less-than-stellar battery life? Will multimedia capabilities be rendered useless because of a 33mhz Dragonball, or lack of memory(even with memory sticks)? Does anyone really want to drop gobs of cash on memory sticks? Something will provide a downside.

And as the previous post said, nobody REALLY knows much about Clie performance yet. Only a handful of people have actually seen the device, and they didn't see mass-produced items. Yes, the website lists the specs, but it's dangerous to be drawn in by the additional ad copy. Then you fall into the trap of "If it's on the Internet it MUST be true. Sony's ad guys wouldn't overhype their product, would they?"

I, too, eagerly anticipate the release of the Sony, because I want to see if it's really as good as it appears. But we all need to realize that something about it will likely disappoint us.

RE: Sony Clie
I.M. Anonymous @ 5/17/2001 10:04:23 PM #
Here's something to think about on the Clie. One thing I've heard is that Palm's going to take the 320x320 support and put that into OS 5. Well, what else is OS 5 supposed to have? ARM support. All the 320x320 palms will have ARM processors. The 320x320 screens will be a high end feature at first, and what high end customer will want an old DragonBall once Palm OS works with ARM? So all (or at least most) new 320x320 palms will have ARMs, and therefore all (once again, "or at least most") new 320x320 apps will be designed for ARM processors. People are already worried about the Clie being slow. Just think how it will be running software written for an ARM. In a year, there won't be any new software for the Clie's higher resolution. It will just be running old 160x160 8 bit apps and may as well be just a Palm IIIc with an MP3 player.

RE: Sony Clie
I.M. Anonymous @ 2/28/2002 1:36:05 PM #
This is silly. Sounds like someone purchased some other, inferior device just before the launch of the Clie, and now feels a need to justify the purchase. Toss it and buy a clie.

Price Drop??

Tom @ 5/17/2001 7:57:24 PM #
I am curious if anyone knows when Palm and Handspring will further drop their prices in the next round of the Palm Wars...? and if so, if IBM will also follow suite (especially with there Palm V clone)?

SSD Expansion on c505

Copper @ 5/18/2001 8:18:14 AM #
hhas anyone checked out the specifications of the IBM clones? it sseems to me that they DO NOT hhave the SD Expansion slots

Why not? @ 5/18/2001 12:34:46 PM #
Why not rebadge Palms would be a more appropriate question. Some corporations will not consider buying anything but IBM because most organizations consider them to be "safe". If the Palm suits a business need, and that business is an IBM shop, then they will have less resistance to purchasing a device with the IBM label. I recall when I was a field engineer who brought an Apple into work. It did it's job spectacularly, but I was told to remove it "because it's not an IBM".



I.M. Anonymous @ 6/7/2001 3:00:31 PM #
IBM brings solid support for these devices. Also, IBM folks use these in a LOT of customer solutions (they also use other devices like Blackberries as well). The blackcase is cool.


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