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Palm Pulls the Plug On Palm OS

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the now-my-palms-wont-operate dept.

Handhelds 300

BobB-nw writes to tell us that Palm has decided to kill their PalmOS operating system and is instead betting their future on a still mostly unknown Palm webOS. Very little is known about the new Palm webOS, but it will supposedly support HTML5 and enable a local data store so that applications can be used both online and off. All of this is rolled into a Linux framework with a message bus based on JSON. Will be interesting to see where they take it.

cancel ×

300 comments

About damn time (5, Interesting)

wiredog (43288) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829265)

Worst. API. Ever. EVAR!

Bad enough that they renamed standard library functions. They also changed the order of arguments to those functions.

Windows PocketPC, meanwhile, was programmable using the same languages and toolchain as regular Windows.

Re:About damn time (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829331)

I guess I would wonder if anybody really cares at this point. Palm OS is dead. And has been for some time. I still have my Tungsten sitting somewhere in a drawer waiting for the sad day that my Blackberry AND my laptop go tits up simultaneously. Or for me to configure it into an e-reader. But really, does anybody buy anything from Palm these days.

Re:About damn time (2, Interesting)

Skater (41976) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829501)

I still use my Sony Clie SJ-20 that I bought about 5.5 years ago... I think it has Palm OS 3.0 or 3.1 on it. Works great for what I use it for; I don't carry a laptop or a smart phone. But, yeah, it's a dead platform.

Re:About damn time (4, Insightful)

Abreu (173023) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829537)

I used two Palm Zires (first a 21, then a 72) as ebook readers for the last 8 years.

When my latest one died two weeks ago, I started looking for a replacement, only to find out that PDAs have been dead for years...

Dammit Palm, you had a complete market cornered, why did you have to drop the ball so stupidly?
If you had developed a decent OS (with a f**kin filesystem!) for your devices 5 years ago, you would still be relevant today...

WebOs might change that... (3, Funny)

blahbooboo (839709) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829647)

In case you hadn't heard, the new Palm WebOs is creating quite a buzz that Palm may finally be back...

Re:About damn time (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26830219)

If you want a nice hand-sized ebook reader, you may wish to consider the iTouch. While I actually had to set up a tiny webserver just to get my ebooks uploaded onto the iTouch (I'm not at all thrilled about the necessity to use the itunes software to sync up) once you get the books onto the device it is actually a very comfortable reading experience.

Re:About damn time (1)

Rhone (220519) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829767)

But really, does anybody buy anything from Palm these days.

I'm pretty happy with my Centro.

I tried a Blackberry first and it died within a week. I switched it for a Centro, which does more, cost less, and (best of all) didn't croak.

Re:About damn time (1)

Theoboley (1226542) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829813)

I know of a couple friend of mine who bout the treo...

Re:About damn time (1)

Chatterton (228704) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829417)

I will say good ridance too.

I have programmed a little soft on it (a Go board generating SGF files of the games I played in my club) and the API was so stupid/complex/borked that it has taken me 10 time the time I have used to program it on a Pocket PC :(.

Re:About damn time (3, Insightful)

rbanffy (584143) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830321)

Just remember that API was designed to run on very simple devices built in 1998.

Re:About damn time (4, Informative)

Major Blud (789630) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829513)

Don't forget that Palm is still going to produce devices running Windows Mobile alongside WebOS. Having spent much time with Windows Mobile, Symbian, and a Palm VII, none of those come close to an iPhone (I haven't used the new BlackBerry Storm so I can't comment). But, you are definitely correct in that that Windows Mobile has the best SDK and development tools available, bar none. There is something said about being able to write your own apps and distribute them freely.

Re:About damn time (2, Informative)

ckaminski (82854) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830263)

God I hate the Storm even more than I hate the iPhone... that clicky screen gimick... blech. If only I could testdrive an N810 before spending the money on it... :-/ I NEED the smartphone keyboard like my Treo has.

RIP My Friend (5, Insightful)

clonan (64380) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829309)

I have used palm OS for almost ten years.

Rest in Peace my friend, you will be missed.

Re:RIP My Friend (0, Flamebait)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829479)

Are you seriously anthropomorphizing a Palm?

Re:RIP My Friend (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829575)

They don't like when you do that to them.

Re:RIP My Friend (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829825)

Are you seriously anthropomorphizing a Palm?

Rosie?

Re:RIP My Friend (4, Funny)

david duncan scott (206421) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829947)

What, you've never anthropomorphized your palm, maybe as Jemma Jameson?

More seriously, though, I like my Z22 precisely because it's a simple PDA. I have a phone, I have a camera, I have a music player, and for that matter I have a knife and a fork, and I have no desire to have all those things combined into one monster device (a FrankenBerry?)

Re:RIP My Friend (2, Funny)

afabbro (33948) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830201)

What, you've never anthropomorphized your palm, maybe as Jemma Jameson?

Who's Jemma Jameson? One of the Jem'Hadar?

Re:RIP My Friend (5, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829659)

I have used palm OS for almost ten years.

Rest in Peace my friend, you will be missed.

I don't know about missed. I think more like "fondly remembered", in that special kind of nostalgic way where you're simultaneously glad it is in fact a memory.

I've been using PalmOS devices since 97, and let me tell you, it wasn't long after the calendar hit 2000 that I stopped having a lot of patience for a non-multitasking OS. If this de-feature had made it stable that'd be one thing, but that's one thing PalmOS never was.

Re:RIP My Friend (4, Funny)

Nimey (114278) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829883)

I won't miss if it's within a hundred yards. Swiss-made rifles FTW!

Re:RIP My Friend (1)

LittleLebowskiUrbanA (619114) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829937)

Kinda hard to miss with most rifles at a 100 yards, especially with a 6.5x55mm which is a good 1000 yard cartridge.

Re:RIP My Friend (1)

jridley (9305) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829991)

I'm still using my Palm IIIxe. I doubt I'll need anything more than that for a long time.

I don't really like smart phones. Actually I don't much like cell phones at all, I have one but it's turned off almost all the time unless I need to make a call.

There's still almost no service where I live, unless I go outside, then I can MAYBE make a call and have the signal hold for 30 seconds, if the weather cooperates.

So if I have to replace my PDA, I hope there's something that doesn't require a service contract that I can buy for $200.

Re:RIP My Friend (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830235)

You forgot the obligatory 'get off my lawn' comment, Mr. 4 digit UID.

Re:RIP My Friend (1)

Main MAn (162800) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830177)

Not

amazing stupidity (0)

pixelpusher220 (529617) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829315)

They *Finally* get some buzz with the forthcoming Palm Pre....and they announce they are killing the OS it uses. How to make early adopters think twice before buying one.

Great move...not

Whether or not the OS kill is a good thing is a different story, but it certainly cramps the buzz of the one thing they've got going for them.

Re:amazing stupidity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829369)

Fail.

(pre doesn't run palmos, it runs webos)

Re:amazing stupidity (2, Informative)

Neon Spiral Injector (21234) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829375)

Um, their killing their old OS in favor of the one which runs on the Pre.

Re:amazing stupidity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829405)

ehh, mod me into oblivion

I *swear* I read the Pre was using something other than webOS, but apparently it is. The summary says that webOS is new and pretty much unknown, which through me since its supposed to be released in just a few months. You'd figure they'd have info out about it, no?

Anyway I'm soooo totally blaming the summary for my ignorance ;-)

Re:amazing stupidity (1)

jonnythan (79727) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829477)

Dude, the Palm Pre does not use Palm OS.

How did you get modded insightful?

Re:amazing stupidity (4, Informative)

tlhIngan (30335) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829591)

Dude, the Palm Pre does not use Palm OS.

How did you get modded insightful?

Probably because of confusion? Palm and PalmOS have gone together (and make sense together). Now they introduce a new device running a new OS. Next Palm announces the death of PalmOS. Unless you're techie enough to know that the Pre runs "WebOS" and not "PalmOS", it would appear that Palm is abandoning their OS.

Anyhow, I think it realy means Palm is abandoning PalmOS. PalmOS is maintained by Access and is part of the Access Linux Platform nowadays... and Access has a nice VM to run PalmOS on the Nokia tablets. Great for those of us stuck with some irreplacable PalmOS apps. (And while there's probably a billion replacements for them, they lack stuff like the speed or other things...).

Re:amazing stupidity (-1, Offtopic)

AdmiralXyz (1378985) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829519)

Comments like this are the reason Slashdot needs a (-1, Stupid) or (-1, Just F***ing Wrong) mod option. This isn't flamebait or trolling, the poster is just an idiot, as is the guy who modded him Insightful.

Re:amazing stupidity (0)

Evanisincontrol (830057) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829687)

While I agree with you in theory, I really think it would flounder in the long run. Imagine an ultra-conservative user with 15 mod points who stumbles upon an "existence of god" debate. Guess who is suddenly "wrong" about everything? (Hint: anyone who disagrees with the moderator)

Re:amazing stupidity (1)

Tubal-Cain (1289912) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830007)

There is a reason they only dispense 3 mod points at a time.

Re:amazing stupidity (5, Informative)

Evanisincontrol (830057) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830131)

I used to get 5 mod points per "round". I typically 15 mod points at a time these days. I'm guessing my positive karma and semi-long (~5 years I think?) history on Slashdot is the reason for that. In any case, they definitely give out more than 3 mod points at a time to many people.

Re:amazing stupidity (0, Offtopic)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830061)

imagine the same scenario today: posts would be moderated flamebait, troll, offtopic, or (more likely) overrated. Asshat moderators can be counteracted by other moderators or graded in M2. Meanwhile, every day dozens of inaccurate/wrong posts get modded up then modded down as overrated (which doesn't affect the label assigned to it), or flambait/troll/offtopic (which may cause other mods to mod it back up because they don't consider it a troll).

Re:amazing stupidity (1)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830293)

How would that be any different from someone with a locally popular opinion doing the same thing? For that matter, how is it any different than the situation we have now with people using "Flamebait" for "I disagree?"

Re:amazing stupidity (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829707)

um, perhaps you should friggin read *my* response comment before posting yours. I fully admitted I had an incorrect assumption in my brain...BEFORE you posted.

Re:amazing stupidity (2, Insightful)

0xdeadbeef (28836) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829805)

Errors should hurt, or you'll keep making them.

Re:amazing stupidity (1)

Cajun Hell (725246) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829755)

Comments like this are the reason Slashdot needs a (-1, Stupid) or (-1, Just F***ing Wrong) mod option.

Either that, or it needs to have a reply butto-- hey wait, I think I found something!

What happened to BeOS? (4, Interesting)

Doctor Faustus (127273) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829337)

Is this going to be a brand-new start? Didn't they buy Be a few years ago to build their new OS versions around BeOS?

Re:What happened to BeOS? (1)

TheRealMindChild (743925) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829563)

That was the speculation, but that is all it was, was speculation. Be already had BeIA which you could use much like Windows NT/XP embeddeded Platform Builder. If they really intended on using it, they already had everything they needed from the get-go. Just some drivers would need written.

Re:What happened to BeOS? (4, Informative)

steeleye_brad (638310) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829573)

Palm did acquire Be Inc in 2001. After this, it get's really fucking goofy and confusing, so I'll just quote Wikipeida (article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palm,_Inc. [wikipedia.org] )

In January 2002, Palm set up a wholly owned subsidiary to develop and license Palm OS[4], which was named PalmSource in February[5]. PalmSource was then spun off from Palm as an independent company. In August 2003, the hardware division of the company merged with Handspring, was renamed to palmOne, Inc. and traded under the ticker symbol PLMO. The Palm trademark was held by a jointly owned holding company.

In April 2005, palmOne purchased PalmSource's share in the 'Palm' trademark for US$30 million.[6] In July 2005, palmOne launched its new name and brand reverting back to Palm, Inc. and trading under the ticker symbol PALM once again.

In late 2005 ACCESS, which specializes in mobile and embedded web browser technologies, acquired PalmSource for US$324 million.

Who knows where Be's intellectual property ended up. Nothing ever came of the Be acquisition, and most likely nothing ever will. Palm's WebOS is entirely new, developed in-house, and has nothing to do with PalmSource/ACCESS.

Re:What happened to BeOS? (2, Informative)

pavon (30274) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830203)

It ended up with ACCESS. I don't think they have any plans for it whatsoever. It was bought to make the next PalmOS, Colbalt, which ACCESS canceled in favor of their ACCESS Linux Platform. The only action I have heard about is that ACCESS shutdown YellowTab (a proprietary fork of BeOS by ZETA software), while they have been accepting and minimally supporting of Haiku (an open source reimplementation of BeOS).

Re:What happened to BeOS? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829641)

Some of the IP they bought from Be might have worked its way into Cobalt, i.e. Palm OS 6, but that's definitely dead.

Cobalt:Copland::webOS:OS X

Re:What happened to BeOS? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830145)

they didn't buy Be, they basically bought Be's engineers and the rights to BeOS, which they sat on. No BeOS code went into PalmOS.

Isn't JSON insecure? (1, Interesting)

jmichaelg (148257) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829349)

I may be wrong but I thought you only use JSON when you're passing messages between trusted sources.

Is that perception incorrect?

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829453)

The messages are passed internally (inside the phone).

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829579)

So every app on a phone should be trusted by the phone's OS and by every other app on the phone?

That works poorly for computers, and worse for phones. If you're doing a new OS from scratch, why repeat that old mistake? It's not like there aren't a million examples of why it's a dumb idea not to have any confinement.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (4, Informative)

TheCycoONE (913189) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829499)

JSON isn't inherently insecure, it's just a method of delimiting data. Running JSON through an eval is insecure, but there are drafts for safer implementations (stringify and parse, as well as a native JSON type in JavaScript iirc). That said, always verify your data.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (1)

mad.frog (525085) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829581)

JSON is already a "native type" in JavaScript -- that was really the reason for its invention.

But yeah, running JSON thru eval() is a terrible, awful idea if you care about security at all. Manual parsing is currently required for safety.

Upcoming ES-3.1 and/or ES-Harmony may have a "secure" JSON parser, but there's been so much flux in the standardization process I don't know the current status.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (1)

TheCycoONE (913189) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830015)

No, JSON is a notation for an 'Object' in Javascript. The JSON Object is new.
See: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc836458(VS.85).aspx [microsoft.com]

There are other sources because this wasn't a MS invention but I'm having a hard time finding them at the moment.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (1)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829649)

The eval is only as insecure as the host it's coming from.
If you don't trust the source of the script/objects, don't use that source.
And all http technologies are subject to man in the middle attacks, but you can always use httpS to help to mitigate that.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (2, Informative)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829543)

Depends on if you're including json as a script tag with the source to a host different than the one that loaded the original document or if you're retrieving json from an XMLHTTPRequest. The latter is sandboxed to the original document's host.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (1)

Cajun Hell (725246) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829801)

Is that perception incorrect?

Yes. While I don't see any appeal to JSON, I really doubt anyone can exploit my parser.

Re:Isn't JSON insecure? (2, Insightful)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830087)

"While I don't see any appeal to JSON"...

I've been writing XML based ajax apps for some time now, but I understand the appeal of JSON.

It's not the smaller document size. The standard XML header is only about 35 bytes and you can make your tags as small as you like.

It's not the speed of parsing. The XML DOM parsing is done natively and quickly using xmlHttpRequest.responseXML.documentElement.

I think the appeal is the easy of getting started with development.
With an XML DOM you can use or build an API to handle the client side traversal of the DOM to get at the elements your page is interested in. Or you can manually iterate through the DOM elements in javascript looking for what you want.
With json, your objects are there ready to use in javascript in the structure that you built on the server.

Who or what is the target for WebOS? (1)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829409)

Are these guys still making PDAs and phones?

If they're a hardware vendor, why not just use Android?

Wrapping webkit and giving javascript APIs to talk to the hardware isn't a bad idea and it's working for PhoneGap. I just don't know why they have to re-invent the wheel.

Do they intend on making money licensing their WebOS to other hardware manufacturers?

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (1)

FTWinston (1332785) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829539)

They've been doing Windows mobile versions of Treos (the palm phone) since the 300 I think. These gradually became more dominant, until palm os versions basically stopped appearing.

To be honest, they've been "reinventing PalmOS" a couple of times now, and none of these have come to fruition as far as I'm aware. I do hope WebOS does better, but you're right, for penetration of their handsets it would seem to make a lot more sense to use Android or stick to WM. Maybe they just like having their own OS...

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (1)

presidentnixon (677878) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829551)

Are these guys still making PDAs and phones? If they're a hardware vendor, why not just use Android? Wrapping webkit and giving javascript APIs to talk to the hardware isn't a bad idea and it's working for PhoneGap. I just don't know why they have to re-invent the wheel. Do they intend on making money licensing their WebOS to other hardware manufacturers?

Why would you comment when you obviously have no understanding of what the company in the story produces? Palm has released PalmOS powered and Windows Mobile devices side-by-side for several years. Yes, they still make phones and PDAs. It doesn't make sense to use Android, and have to pay licensing on a product that they don't own when they have been around long enough to know what works and what their customers want. The technology that WebOS uses is well known, and they made what seems to be an improvement on their own work with the WebOS. I'll miss the traditional PalmOS, but probably not for long, if the early reviews of WebOS are any indicaion.

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (2, Insightful)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829689)

"Why would you comment when you obviously have no understanding of what the company in the story produces?"

I guess you didn't noticed that is more of a question than a comment.

"It doesn't make sense to use Android, and have to pay licensing on a product that they don't own when they have been around long enough to know what works and what their customers want."

Huh? Pay licensing for what? The platform Android is open source.

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829553)

"If they're a hardware vendor, why not just use Android?"

Because this has been in the works for -years-. A lot longer than Android has been, even.

Still, there's something to be said for giving up and going with what works, rather than trying to roll your own unsuccessfully. An Android-based PDA (if cheap enough) would sell pretty well, I'd think.

I wonder if anyone is considering it?

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (1)

WiiVault (1039946) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829693)

Yeah this is bizarre to me too. This has become a crowded market between WinMo, Mobile OS X, Symbian, and Android. I mean WebOS looks amazing, but the competition is stiff. Will Palm follow Apple and not license the OS? Do they really have the ecosystem and monetary muscle to support a totally new OS in a wide field? Or will they license it, thus going up against OSes backed by far more reliable giants? I really hope the Pre saves Palm, but I'm really not sure how it can.

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (0)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829703)

Wrapping webkit and giving javascript APIs to talk to the hardware isn't a bad idea and it's working for PhoneGap. I just don't know why they have to re-invent the wheel.

Apple initially proposed something similar for the iPhone in lieu of a true SDK. Most people here on slashdot said it wouldn't be enough, and they were right. I don't know if Apple proposed it as a temporary stopgap while they worked on a true SDK or if they got enough feedback and changed their minds. History repeating itself.

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (5, Informative)

Baricom (763970) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829795)

Apple's so-called "API" consisted of a keynote where they recommend making web pages that looked like native iPhone apps, but ran over the Internet in Mobile Safari. Palm's API is web-based, but the HTML/CSS/JavaScript will be stored and executed on the device, and JavaScript will be extended with hooks into phone-specific functionality. The difference is apples (no pun intended) to oranges.

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (2, Interesting)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829857)

I was one of those people saying it wouldn't be enough. And I still do think it's not enough for some things.

Making a 3D game and using hardware openGL acceleration is tough to do in with HTML5 :)

I just meant that it's a nice option to have to build some applications. It also allows to make things somewhat cross platform with PhoneGap ( http://phonegap.com/ [phonegap.com] ) because things like GPS and motion sensors are already abstracted and the implementation to another webkit device wouldn't be difficult.

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (2, Informative)

blahbooboo (839709) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829957)

Apple initially proposed something similar for the iPhone in lieu of a true SDK. Most people here on slashdot said it wouldn't be enough, and they were right. I don't know if Apple proposed it as a temporary stopgap while they worked on a true SDK or if they got enough feedback and changed their minds. History repeating itself.

Wrong.

WebOs apps run on the actual device and are native to the device (the apps just use Javascript and HTML as their "language"). Apple originally proposed "apps" that were actually web pages formatted to look nicely (and have a bit more functionality) when viewed on the iPhone. However, they were still web sites that had no real access to the hardware of the viewer. WebOs apps will have access to the hardware layer, run locally, etc...

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (0)

JasterBobaMereel (1102861) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830175)

Windows CE (or whatever it is called) costs money to licence
Android costs money to licence
WebOS cost them nothing ... now they have developed it

They reinvented the wheel because the alternative wheels available at the time were expensive or old fashioned, and did not work very well ...

Windows mobile is notorious for being resource hungry (because it has the same API as Windows) and is not as stable as it should be

Nokia's Symbian has it's own problems ...

Re:Who or what is the target for WebOS? (2, Informative)

LDoggg_ (659725) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830227)

Android is open source.

The parts that cost money are the proprietary hardware drivers and media codecs and things like that, but that's not free for any platform.

Palm keeps falling flat? (4, Interesting)

Dripdry (1062282) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829423)

Is it just me, or has Palm fallen flat on its face every time they have something that could be big (except when they debuted the palm pilot)?
They used to have so much caché, but every time I hear what sounds like good news it just vanishes.
Why do people keep supporting this company if they can't get their act together? Do they offer a magical pony with every purchase that no one is telling me about?

Re:Palm keeps falling flat? (3, Informative)

xoundmind (932373) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829509)

Not sure if it is true in 2009, but 4 years ago: Many, many medical and nursing students were required to have a Palm for running some handy med-apps.

Re:Palm keeps falling flat? (2, Interesting)

bockelboy (824282) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829643)

Indeed.

Which is why all my doctor friends are now ecstatic that most of those applications are on the iPhone.

Apple FTW!

Re:Palm keeps falling flat? (2, Insightful)

AtariDatacenter (31657) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829719)

Yeah. I've done a few of the Palm PDAs over the years, starting with the Palm Pilot Pro. Back then, those things were cutting edge, lots of software, lots of support. You looked at the device and you knew it had a future.

It just seems like, since then, the company has had high goals, but has been on a behind-the-curve downhill slide ever since.

I now look back with regret on my decision a little over a year ago to buy a Palm T|X. Little third party development these days. Almost no vendor support on the built-in software. And yet, somehow, these are still selling today for $250-$300?

Sadly, it only performs the following functions for me to today:

1. MP3 player
2. Notepad
3. Emergency wifi web browser

Palm only has one shot left, IMHO. They need to put something out there, and it needs to be WOW.

If this isn't a Killer OS, then it'll be the OS that killed the company.

Re:Palm keeps falling flat? (0, Flamebait)

resonance378 (1169393) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829861)

Apparently you've never supported the Palm Pilot mX Magical Pony Edition or you would not be saying such things. Of the few POS that are still in service where I am employed - our team spends at least 6 hours a week supporting palms for their issues. Users love them for their calendaring and contact lists and don't want to give them up for that. Blackberry just doesn't have it yet when it comes to that in the users eyes. Apparently losing data, duping data, not synching every other day, bursting into flames, and killing babies to a dark lord are all things they can live with in order to use those two functions.

Re:Palm keeps falling flat? (1)

vux984 (928602) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829953)

They used to have so much caché,

I don't usually do corrections, but the word you are looking for is "cachet".

Re:Palm keeps falling flat? (1)

Dripdry (1062282) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830139)

thank you. I guess I was just hard up to use an ASCII table.

I thought PalmOS was the property of Access...? (1)

Richard Steiner (1585) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829609)

Palm doesn't own PalmOS anymore. They can choose not to use it on their devices, but that doesn't mean the operating system can't continue to develop and be sold to others (in the form of GVM or whatever).

This is old news (5, Informative)

metamatic (202216) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829683)

You're half there.

Access owned PalmOS, and in fact PalmOS was killed in late 2005 [ath0.com] when Access ceased development and moved to the Linux-based ALP (Access Linux Platform).

This announcement is actually just Palm admitting that they can't afford to release any more hardware that uses an OS that's been dead for nearly 4 years.

Palm was once *the* PDA to use (1, Insightful)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829611)

They had a virtual monopoly on portable devices.
Not they're barely known.
How the mighty have fallen.

Note that the monopoly was killed by the free market, and not be government interference. The market may be slower, but it eventually breaks-up monopolies through natural forces.

Does this mean... (1)

camperdave (969942) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829621)

So does this mean that nobody will be supporting my Handspring Visor anymore? I tried hot synching it to Vista the other day, but it was not recognized. With PalmOS being discontinued, I guess there will not be any support in Windows-7 either. Synching support in Linux is a bit hit or miss. When it does work often wind up getting duplicate entries in evolution.

Re:Does this mean... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26830237)

Oh yeah, the visor edge was a beautiful little machine. Just enough power to be useful, but none of that color crap that killed batteries. And thin.

Too late (2, Interesting)

MikeRT (947531) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829637)

They had their chance when they bought all of the rights to BeOS. They could have taken the kernel and a few components and built a new OS on top of that, back before Blackberry and Apple were huge players in this market. Now, this comes along as a me-too product that will probably have very poor performance (a web-based approach on hardware too slow to run something like a V8 or Gecko-style JS engine?!)

Worst of all for Palm, they could have released most of the code to BeOS under the GPL, let others develop it, and that would have had the effect of crushing a lot of their competition from Microsoft.

I've bought my last Palm product anyway (1)

ntrfug (147745) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829639)

I've used Palm products for over ten years.

I bought a Palm TX, and the on/off button stopped working. Palm's response? "You'll just have to buy a new one." I did.

Six months later (almost to the day) the on/off button stopped working.

I'm NOT buying another. I'll buy a Windows POS before I'll buy another Palm POS.

Re:I've bought my last Palm product anyway (1)

baka_toroi (1194359) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829749)

Uhm... why would you settle on a Windows POS? There's Android and the iPhone. The mobile market is not as monopolized as the desktop market.

Re:I've bought my last Palm product anyway (2, Informative)

uglyduckling (103926) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829925)

Actually that button stopped working on my TX. I took it to bits, resoldered the dry joint and glued the switch to the PCB which is what Palm should have done in the first place rather than relying on the solder joint for a button that is pressed 20 times a day.

Re:I've bought my last Palm product anyway (1)

arb phd slp (1144717) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830095)

SAme here. After I had to buy $30 worth of add-on software to make my TX work at all (Warpspeed and PowerDigi) and the flakiness of the on-off button (although it hasn't broken altogether) I told myself this was the last Palm I'd get. I'm still using it, but I'm very close to replacing it with a Touch.

I would have loved a little handheld BeOS machine. Why, Palm, why?

This is awful (5, Interesting)

laing (303349) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829671)

I started with WinCE (on a Casiopia) and stayed through 2 revisions despite the crashes, slowness, and rapid battery drain. I switched to a Palm III (clone actually - TRG Pro) and have had 3 Palm devices since then (currently a Centro). I prefer Palm's calendar and contact database to the alternatives. My Palm currently has about nine thousand contacts in the database. Am I going to be able to use the WebOS when there's no wireless data connectivity? I don't think so. Can Palm ensure the security of my data while using WebOS? I don't think so. What happened to the rumored port of PalmOS to Linux? I've been waiting for that for 3 years now. Since they are abandoning the platform, is it for sale? Are they going to open source it? I would not like to see it die.

Re:This is awful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829727)

Am I going to be able to use the WebOS when there's no wireless data connectivity? I don't think so.

RTFS:it will supposedly support HTML5 and enable a local data store so that applications can be used both online and off

Re:This is awful (2, Interesting)

JustinOpinion (1246824) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829799)

Am I going to be able to use the WebOS when there's no wireless data connectivity? I don't think so.

According to TFA [networkworld.com] :

According to Palm's website and some early development partners, webOS supports HTML5, enabling a local data store, so applications and data are available offline, and a file system.

And the palm developer site: [palm.com]

Leverage the local storage capabilities of HTML5 so that data is available even when users are offline

I'm sure Palm intends WebOS to still work when there is no connectivity. Whether or not they implement this properly is another question, of course. Can anyone comment on how well the "local storage capabilities of HTML5" work?

Re:This is awful (1)

Thelasko (1196535) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829913)

Since they are abandoning the platform, is it for sale? Are they going to open source it? I would not like to see it die.

It will probably end up like the other operating system [wikipedia.org] Palm pulled the plug on.

Re:This is awful (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829961)

I'm pretty sure WebOS is just the same, you'll be fine without internet connection.

I know part of the name is because the apps can be designed and written as easily as a webpage in a lot of cases.

If I was you I would do a little more research before writing it off, the Pre looks like a pretty sweet device

Re:This is awful (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829997)

Am I going to be able to use the WebOS when there's no wireless data connectivity?

Yes, it runs applications on the device, not on a remote server.

Can Palm ensure the security of my data while using WebOS?

Yes, it stores your data on the device, and only supplements it with existing data from remote servers when you want. Just like outlook has a local address book, but can also plug into the corporate-wide LDAP directory.

What happened to the rumored port of PalmOS to Linux? Are they going to open source it?

Palm does not own Palm OS. They split off into PalmOne (hardware) and PalmSource (software) years ago. PalmSource was bought by ACCESS 4 years ago. They have the full rights to the PalmOS, and may choose to go forward with their linux port (ACCESS Linux Platform). However Palm (the hardware manufacturer) has no plans to use it.

#offtopic#..nicely chosen name (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829673)

webOS...a very nicely chosen name, i bet it'll sell a lot in spanish speaking countries.

Yes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829701)

But does it run Linux?

mod DowN (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26829733)

guxests. Some p3ople

Misleading story (5, Informative)

metamatic (202216) | more than 5 years ago | (#26829735)

First off, Palm don't own PalmOS. It's owned by Access, who bought PalmSource.

Secondly, PalmOS's plug was pulled back in 2005, when Access announced no further development work would be done on it.

Thirdly, Palm didn't *decide* to pull the plug; their license from Access to ship new PalmOS devices expired, so they have no choice.

I wrote about all this back in 2005 [ath0.com] when the news went around. I guess everyone's forgotten.

Re:Misleading story (5, Funny)

LittleLebowskiUrbanA (619114) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830039)

Don't know how we all missed it, what with our daily checking of your web site.

Re:Misleading story (1)

Teese (89081) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830063)

"In December 2006, Palm, Inc. paid $44 million to ACCESS for the rights to the source code for Palm OS Garnet. With this arrangement, a single company is again developing Palm hardware and software. Palm can modify the licensed software as needed and it need not pay royalties to ACCESS over future years."
--Wikipedia, no citation given.

So it sounds like palm did decide to pull the plug, the new agreement gave Palm rights to the source code (again).

Assuming it's true, how much money was involved in splitting palm up, only to reunite (sort of) later?

So what upgrade/emulation options exist? (2, Interesting)

Thag (8436) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830033)

I am using a Zodiac 2 now, and have a TX in storage if the Zod dies, but I am wondering what options exist for moving/using my data on other platforms?

I know Access has sold their ALP platform to a couple companies, it's on at least one digital camera, too. They also put out a PalmOS compatible layer for the Nokia internet tablets.

I think there is a company that emulates the basic built-in apps on WinCE and iPhone/iPod Touch. Haven't heard great things about that.

Are there other options out there?

Bad for Point of Sale Users (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26830113)

My company sells Palms to use as Point of Sale Devices for delivery drivers. We have software tailored to the Palm and receipt printers as well.

Now that Palm is going to end, we will need to find another platform to run our software on. I don't see are customers using a smartphone.

It is interesting how Apple store employees use Symbol handhelds, which run Palm OS, instead of the iPhone. Even for Apple, the iPhone is not a replacement for Palm.

Palm lost the plot years ago... (5, Insightful)

argent (18001) | more than 5 years ago | (#26830245)

IF they'd kept the original PalmOS model and followed it to cheaper devices you'd be seeing Palms instead of Ti graphing calculators as the standard handheld for schoolkids by now... which would have translated into massive sales as the kids grew up. But Palm decided they HAD to go head to head against the Pocket PC, and threw away most of the advantages of the small, tight, lightweight Palm OS while keeping most of its disadvantages with PalmOS 5.

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