Palm Denies Report of Foleo Delay

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Palm, Inc. has categorically denied a report from an industry analyst, who said last week that the release of the Foleo Mobile Companion will come several weeks after what was first promised.

Deutsche Bank’s Jonathan Goldberg said problems in the Foleo’s software that allows it to synchronize with a Treo smartphone will push debut back to late September or in early October.

Palm Foleo with Treo
(view large image)

However, Jim Christensen, Palm’s director of communications, has released the following statement:.“As stated on May 30, U.S. availability for the Palm Foleo mobile companion will begin this summer."

What’s Going On Behind the Scenes

Even though Palm insists that the Foleo will debut when originally promised, the Deutsche Bank’s analyst’s report that the company has run into problems with the device’s synchronization software is true.

But according to Ben Combee from the Foleo development team, the report greatly exaggerated the problem:

The issues haven’t been “it doesn’t sync”, but more like “after syncing large numbers of emails over a four day time period, the operation fails 25% of the time and cannot restart without resetting the device.” We’ve been doing lots of stress testing, and sometimes that finds problems that have been hidden for a while or problems that are really hard to debug because of the need to setup a reproducible case with instrumentation.

Combee says that this isn’t a description of a specific problem, but rather is an indication of the sort of bugs the development team is working on now.

No one has given a specific date when the Foleo will arrive, but if Palm is going to fulfill its promise it has to be before September 23, the first day of autumn.

More About the Palm Foleo

When it debuts, the Foleo will be significantly larger than Palm’s handhelds and smartphones, and will have a clamshell design with a 10-inch display and a full size QWERTY keyboard.

It will be designed to work in conjunction with a Palm OS or Windows Mobile Treo via Bluetooth, plus the Foleo will also have Wi-Fi short-range wireless networking.

It will weigh 2.5 pounds, and Palm says it will offer up to 5 hours of battery life, even when using Wi-Fi .

The price will be $600, but Palm will offer a $100 rebate at its introduction.

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