PDA News: Palm loses Handera but gains memory, Nokia Cruises

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HandEra bails out on producing Palm devices

HandEra, an Iowa based company founded in 1992, helped to bring about some of the most innovative features for the Palm platform.  We can thank HandEra for delivering the first Hi-Res screen for a Palm device and providing memory expansion innovations.  However, it has been some time since HandEra released a Palm device and today they announced not only will there be no new devices, but HandEra will stop shipping the TRGPro and HandEra 330 Palm devices on May 31.  HandEra cited increased Palm licensing as the main factor in causing them to bail out.  According to HandEra’s President the company will now “offer new products to serve the OEM (original equipment manufacturer) mobile computing market in the near future.”

Palm to increase internal memory capability to 128MB

Palm Solutions Group claims it has accomplished a sevenfold breakthrough in memory for Palm Powered handheld computers. Palm Solutions and PalmSource engineers collaborated to develop memory technology that extends the amount of random-access memory (RAM) possible on a Palm OS(R) handheld from the current 16MB to 128MB. “The range of potential next-generation hardware and software solutions expands tremendously with this innovation from Palm Solutions engineers,” said Steve Manser, senior vice president of product development for Palm Solutions Group.  This is big news for Palm, there was always a perceived advantage for the Pocket PC Platform due to the larger amounts of memory it can support.  The key is that the Palm OS platform was created for handheld computing and is designed for efficiency, speed and compact size. That is a big contrast to the Microsoft Pocket PC OS, which was condensed from a desktop OS and consequently strapped with bulk and compromises.  A couple of examples of this are:

-A high-performance Palm Tungsten(TM) T handheld requires about one- fifth the Storage space to hold identical calendar or address information compared to the HP iPAQ 3870 running the Pocket PC OS;

-A Palm handheld uses about one-fifth the storage to manage text or voice memos vs. a Pocket PC handheld;

So with increased memory capabilities and more efficient Storage already, Palm could be getting a huge leg up here.

Nokia continues to gain market share

Even with the brutal times for telecom and technology, Nokia managed to surprise with its financials for Q1 today.  Only 4% off from last years numbers, Nokia was expected to miss by a whole lot more.  They also continue to gain market share, Nokia sold some 38 million handsets in the first quarter, a gain of 13 percent from a year ago, in a market that grew only about 10 percent. The company has consistently outperformed rivals and grabbed market share, especially from Ericsson of Sweden, in recent years.



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