Linked by David Adams on Sun 5th Oct 2008 03:18 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless A Fortune Magazine article looks at hand-held computing's most beleaguered major player and wonders whether it wouldn't be better off hitching its wagon to Google's coat-tails and adopting Android. After shunting aside its own, old-and-creaky OS in favor of Microsoft's it's been hanging its hopes on a long-awaited new Linux-based OS. Android may be Palm's best bet to avoid stemming its inexorable slide into irrelevance.
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v Oh Good Lord, Yes!
by Phloptical on Sun 5th Oct 2008 04:05 UTC
RE: Oh Good Lord, Yes!
by rdean400 on Sun 5th Oct 2008 15:45 UTC in reply to "Oh Good Lord, Yes!"
rdean400 Member since:
2006-10-18

Palm has already said that all future Treos will be Windows Mobile only.

PalmOS will be limited to Centro-style devices.

The "Nova" handhelds will be for the so-called "Prosumer" market.

Reply Score: 1

rcsteiner
Member since:
2005-07-12

It was simple, easy to use, relatively stable, and had a lot of software available for it.

I still emulate PalmOS on my Nokia 770 via the Garnet VM and use that emulation for several things (calculators, budgeting, and of course games), and my most used PDA is still my trusty old Palm m105 running PalmOS 3.52. It does what I want in a PDA. I already have cameras, music players, phones, and web tablets for all of that other functionality. In a pinch, though, I can still surf the web with Xiino if I have access to a phone line. :-)

Edited 2008-10-05 04:12 UTC

Reply Score: 4

David Member since:
1997-10-01

I really loved the Newton. But I'd still rather have an iPhone today.

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

iPhone is not the best hardware for my own needs. I do miss my Newton 2001 though. I've yet to find a replacement for the text/task pad on any other platform though some choices come close.

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

same here. the Garnet VM is a staple of my Maemo installs. I just wish Access would bridge the bluetooth the way they bridged the wireless networking. A few bluetooth tools keep my T5 in my toolkit instead of out on EBay for someone who can find use of all the device functions.

Reply Score: 2

Android?
by Silent_Seer on Sun 5th Oct 2008 08:06 UTC
Silent_Seer
Member since:
2007-04-06

Well why not Access Linux Platform then? It already has Palm emulation built into it's middleware and it's api conforms to the LiMo specification. And that allows native coding as opposed the running apps on a jvm in case of the Android.

I wonder if these financial magazines have any understanding of technology other than the relative stock market positions of the respective companies and the latest buzzwords accompanying them.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Android?
by unoengborg on Sun 5th Oct 2008 12:56 UTC in reply to "Android?"
unoengborg Member since:
2005-07-06

This is not about what technical solution is best. This is about financial backing. Even though there are other free Linux based systems out there today, having Google money behind the development of Android makes people believe it will be there tomorrow as well.

Another factor, is that it is quite easy to develop applications on Android. Many universities use Java in their beginner courses, and in the enterprice Java is close to becomming the next COBOL, i.e. the language that is used for everything important. So it should not be hard to find developers, and developers is very important for success.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Android?
by rdean400 on Sun 5th Oct 2008 15:54 UTC in reply to "RE: Android?"
rdean400 Member since:
2006-10-18

Actually COBOL is the next COBOL. There have been more lines of business code written in COBOL since 2000 than in all other languages combined (according to a recent DDJ).

Reply Score: 2

RE: Android?
by rdean400 on Sun 5th Oct 2008 15:51 UTC in reply to "Android?"
rdean400 Member since:
2006-10-18

These are the same people that said that splitting the company into independent hardware and software outfits was a good thing. Their lack of understanding of the symbiotic relationship between hardware and software leaves them unable to comprehend when a technology company as a whole unit is greater than the sum of its parts.

Palm was one of those companies. It very much needed to hold onto PalmOS to push it forward. Under independent leadership, it whithered and died.

That's a shame, because although I didn't care for the underlying architecture, I found the UI to be more appropriate for my needs than something overengineered like many of the Linux and Windows Mobile phones.

Reply Score: 1

So
by Buck on Sun 5th Oct 2008 08:41 UTC
Buck
Member since:
2005-06-29

Anyone remembers what eventually happened to Cobalt, the once much-anticipated PalmOS evolution?

Reply Score: 2

RE: So
by hobgoblin on Sun 5th Oct 2008 15:56 UTC in reply to "So"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

i think it was part of the palmsource package that access bought.

but its not showing up on access's products page so im guessing they have given it the last rites.

instead they are pushing garnet and something called the access linux platform. the latter seems able to use garnet vm for backwards compatiblity with garnet (the lack of said compatiblity was what killed cobalt iirc).

Edited 2008-10-05 15:57 UTC

Reply Score: 2

It might not matter....
by obsidian on Sun 5th Oct 2008 09:08 UTC
obsidian
Member since:
2007-05-12

Given that Palm took over the I.P. rights of BeOS in 2001 (and then failed to do anything much with it), the omens don't look good for them.

If they had what was an excellent O.S. and *still* couldn't make it fly, then adopting Android might not make much difference. "Casting pearls before swine", maybe...? ;)

Reply Score: 4

Comment by Kroc
by Kroc on Sun 5th Oct 2008 09:38 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

Personally, I want to see GEOS back on mobile devices plz (Nokia Communicator 9110)

What OS did the Psion series run?

Personally I find Palm and WinMobile to be too much an OS, and not enough getting things done. The OS should be transparent so as you are working with an "interface" rather than working with an O.S.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by Kroc
by REM2000 on Sun 5th Oct 2008 11:10 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
REM2000 Member since:
2006-07-25

PSION's used symbian which was later brought by Nokia.

PalmOS has always been a stable lean OS. Im sure if they put some resources into it and give it a new lick of paint it could be a big contender.

The only mobile OS ive never liked in phones is Windows Mobile. Ive always found it limited, slow and clunky. Hopefully v7 might iron this out.

If anyone was thinking of switching to Android then it would be prudent to see how it plays in the mobile arena before slipping into it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc - Nokia MIDS
by jabbotts on Sun 5th Oct 2008 11:39 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

If you want to go the other way and try Android before buying the G1 or any other new hardware, you can install it on the N800/N810 devices for a look. I think it's about time I have another look at installing it anyhow.

Reply Score: 2

hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

or one can grab the sdk and run the emulator.

the thing can even have different skins applied, and will automatically match the ui to the screen shape. i have seen a N800 skin with the launcher tab on the right for instance, and it was automatically placed there.

the emulator is fully featured, i have browsed real life webpages with it from my linux desktop ;)

the power of being java based, i guess...

Reply Score: 2

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

It will be interesting to watch. My workstation would be boring if it only booted one OS.. Why should my PDA be so limited as to only boot one? ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by Kroc
by nonesuch on Sun 5th Oct 2008 21:45 UTC in reply to "Comment by Kroc"
nonesuch Member since:
2007-11-13

Psion, starting with Series 5, ran the precursor to Symbian, called EPOC32 at the time. This was to differentiate it from the original x86 EPOC OS, used on Series 3 PDAs, late renamed EPOC16.

EPOC32 was built from scratch for a brand-new, in-house architecture built around ARM chips, and was always intended to be licensed out to other companies, much like Palm OS eventually was. This didn't really happen in large scale until Symbian Ltd was formed with Nokia, Ericsson and Motorola. Now, of course Nokia has bought the rest of that IP from its partners to eventually open-source it. Psion lives!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EPOC_(computing)

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by Kroc
by helf on Mon 6th Oct 2008 02:29 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by Kroc"
helf Member since:
2005-07-06

Epoc32 R5 was the release used on like my Psion 5/5mx/5mx pro/netbook (yes, i loved my psions). I LOVE that OS. It was amazingly fast and stable. It ran super quick on a 18mhz ARM6 with 8mb of ram ;)

symbian is a bastardization of it. I refuse to link the two ;)

Reply Score: 2

BeOS
by chekr on Sun 5th Oct 2008 09:48 UTC
chekr
Member since:
2005-11-05

Do Palm Inc still hold the rights to the Be Inc intellectual capital or was that sold on/spun off?

Reply Score: 2

RE: BeOS
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 5th Oct 2008 09:54 UTC in reply to "BeOS"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

Do Palm Inc still hold the rights to the Be Inc intellectual capital or was that sold on/spun off?

Sold to ACCESS long ago.

Reply Score: 1

No
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 5th Oct 2008 09:54 UTC
KAMiKAZOW
Member since:
2005-07-06

Honestly: What's with all that buzz around Android? It uses a Java dialect as API -- nothing even remotely standardized. That API is compatible with nothing out there except a single newly released phone.

Why is everybody raving about Android when there's Maemo? Maemo is a mature platform. It's out in the wild since 2005. It have a big and active developer community. Its APIs are based around GNOME and soon also Qt.
Maemo is free. Really free. No NDAs on pre-release SDKs like Andoid's.

OK, Maemo is currently targeted at PDAs without phone capability, but how difficult can it be for Palm to port a phone app over?

Reply Score: 1

RE: No - one word
by jabbotts on Sun 5th Oct 2008 11:41 UTC in reply to "No"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Google

The single most powerful brand name in the world is releasing a mobile phone OS; for some, that's more than enough. My personal hope is that the competition pushes Maemo to even greater hights.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: No - one word
by hobgoblin on Sun 5th Oct 2008 16:17 UTC in reply to "RE: No - one word"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

given the recent fremantle talks, it seems nokia is aiming squarely at iphone ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: No - one word
by jabbotts on Mon 6th Oct 2008 16:51 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: No - one word"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

We'll see how Nokia decides to go. They still seem to be running phones, smartphones and the MIDs seporately; my theory being to avoid canabalizing there own various markets. Maemo5 does sound interesting though and the expected addition of 3G radios in the next MID does a lot to blure the lines further though I'm not sure if it will be just data or data/voice connections. We'll have to see if the new N### hardware justifies an upgrade like the N810 does over the N800.

Ugh.. I still prefer my cell and PDA to be seporate boxes. Smarphones make good use of screen space on the chassis and the iPhone has more than a few drawbacks that negate it from my list of potential devices. It's pretty and fine if you just need an Apple branded smart phone though.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: No - one word
by hobgoblin on Mon 6th Oct 2008 16:56 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: No - one word"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

heh, if you really want to hack around, have a look at the openpandora ;)

ok, so its first of a gaming platform, but given that its has wifi and bluetooth, and a keyboard of sorts, someone is bound to turn it into some kind of pda like device...

only issue i guess is that its clamshell, not slate...

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: No - one word
by jabbotts on Mon 6th Oct 2008 19:01 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: No - one word"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

I've been watching the open mobile phone project also. Open OS and open hardware though it looks like a key dongle in all the shots without somethign for size prespective. I'm tempted to guess OpenMoko.. speaking of which, it's time for my weekly linuxdevices visit..

Reply Score: 2

RE: No
by g2devi on Sun 5th Oct 2008 12:48 UTC in reply to "No"
g2devi Member since:
2005-07-09

I don't get it either. With Android, you're required a Google account, and you're required to use GMail and other G-services. We railed against MS-Passport, but when Google tries the same thing, "it's a good thing" for some reason. No thanks. Maemo is likely a far better choice for Palm. Someone has to cater to the non-groupie locked in (i.e. iPhone and Android) crowd.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: No
by unoengborg on Sun 5th Oct 2008 13:21 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
unoengborg Member since:
2005-07-06

I don't get it either. With Android, you're required a Google account, and you're required to use GMail and other G-services. We railed against MS-Passport, but when Google tries the same thing, "it's a good thing" for some reason. No thanks. Maemo is likely a far better choice for Palm. Someone has to cater to the non-groupie locked in (i.e. iPhone and Android) crowd.



Last time I looked there was no requirement in using Google services with Android. We can expect that it will come with components that makes it easy to use such services, but that's hardly surprising.


Android is built to be modular, so a reasonably good developer should be able to extend or even replace even standard components of Android, so if you don't like G-mail you can even write you own mail system. My guess is that we will see a lot of e-mail, calendaring plugins in the market, once the handsets becomes a little more common.

This is nothing like the Microsoft passport thing.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: No
by elsewhere on Tue 7th Oct 2008 04:20 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: No"
elsewhere Member since:
2005-07-13

Last time I looked there was no requirement in using Google services with Android. We can expect that it will come with components that makes it easy to use such services, but that's hardly surprising.


The requirement will come from the incentives google will likely provide to the telcos and the handset manufacturers. These companies see Mozilla making $50M a year from Google, and they'll want a piece as well.

Android is built to be modular, so a reasonably good developer should be able to extend or even replace even standard components of Android, so if you don't like G-mail you can even write you own mail system. My guess is that we will see a lot of e-mail, calendaring plugins in the market, once the handsets becomes a little more common.


Depending upon whether or not the handset manufacturers, or providers, allow that level of modification. Just because Android is open source, doesn't mean it has to be implemented in a way that enables it to be modifiable or customizable.

Google, the handset manufacturers, and the telcos, are all investing money in making this thing viable. I'll admit I'm cynical, but I'd find it hard to believe that they're making this investment so that users have total freedom in choice.

This is nothing like the Microsoft passport thing.


It is, but it's just much more subtle. Google isn't doing this just for warm and fuzzy feelings.

At the end of the day, it remains to be seen how many android phones actually appear on the market, and how customizable they will be, and how the telcos will handle it, and what type of arrangements Google makes with the providers. It's speculation until then, even on my part, since the first phone hasn't even hit the market yet.

But I consider it a no-win battle to choose between Microsoft, Google or Apple for owning my phone.

Just my 2c...

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: No
by AndrewDubya on Sun 5th Oct 2008 16:26 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
AndrewDubya Member since:
2006-10-15

It's becoming just as mainstream to hate Google as it is to hate Microsoft. Actually, it's worse than that. People seem to think Microsoft is small now and they can't do any harm, which I think is amazingly short-sighted. Microsoft is still the major company doing whatever it can to lock people in to proprietary formats to prevent competition.

It's safe to ignore comments that Maemo doesn't have phone support. I'm sure it will soon enough. My problem with Maemo is that it's just not that clean, and this coming from someone who really loves his N810. All of the apps that really "work" on the n810 use insanely customized UIs. I still hold out hope for it... I don't think there is plenty of work that can be done with Maemo to make it better, without sacrificing too much backwards compatibility.

But, on that note, I really think people are using other biases to assume Android will be bad. I'm looking forward to getting an Android-based phone (maybe not the G1 though), and I'm sure I'll be able to use it in addition to my N810 if that proves to be useful.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: No
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 5th Oct 2008 17:11 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: No"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

It's becoming just as mainstream to hate Google as it is to hate Microsoft.

What? Look at digg (a site more mainstream that OSNews). If you post some criticism about Google there (like Google's habit of collecting personal data), you'll get modded down.
At least among the tech crowd, Google and Android are more popular than Jesus.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: No
by l3v1 on Mon 6th Oct 2008 06:38 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: No"
l3v1 Member since:
2005-07-06

are more popular than Jesus


That wouldn't be a surprise these days.

Reply Score: 2

RE: No
by TSDgeos on Sun 5th Oct 2008 15:12 UTC in reply to "No"
TSDgeos Member since:
2007-05-26

No phone with maemo, so maemo is bastly irrelevant, most people want one gadget to rule them all, and maemo can't be without a phone

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: No
by hobgoblin on Sun 5th Oct 2008 16:25 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

nokia recently handed some 3G radio drivers over to the linux kernel. the next device will probably sport a wwan radio.

but it will not do native calls, iirc. so voip will be the method (something the existing tablets can already do, using wifi).

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: No
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 5th Oct 2008 17:04 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

No phone with maemo, so maemo is bastly irrelevant, most people want one gadget to rule them all, and maemo can't be without a phone

So? How does your badly written comment explain why Palm shouldn't use Maemo?
Maemo is currently not a phone OS, yes. Palm (or any other phone company) could easily extend Maemo.
Unlike Android, Maemo has already a big software eco system. Android is just experimental.

Reply Score: 1

RE: No
by modmans2ndcoming on Sun 5th Oct 2008 18:39 UTC in reply to "No"
modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

open platform making it easier for developers and hackers and hardware makers to play with. Hardware markers get the benefit of having a ready made ecosystem and they don't have to pay for it.

The hardest thing to do with a smart phone is to get an active ecosystem, jumping onto Android gets them an active ecosystem for free.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: No
by KAMiKAZOW on Sun 5th Oct 2008 20:26 UTC in reply to "RE: No"
KAMiKAZOW Member since:
2005-07-06

open platform making it easier for developers and hackers and hardware makers to play with. Hardware markers get the benefit of having a ready made ecosystem and they don't have to pay for it.

What are you talking about? Maemo is an open platform -- since 2005.
Android is NOT open. If it was truly open, there was no NDA on pre-release SDKs.

The hardest thing to do with a smart phone is to get an active ecosystem, jumping onto Android gets them an active ecosystem for free.

Cut the crap. There's no active eco system for Android. There is a big one for Maemo.

Reply Score: 0

RE[3]: No
by modmans2ndcoming on Mon 6th Oct 2008 01:55 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: No"
modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

Considering Android is the Apache license, you seem to be the one completely mistaken. Apache is an OSI license buddy.

The API that is covered under an NDA is the yet to become public API. That does not make it less open source than any other OSI license except to OSS zealots.

As for the ecosystem, This is backed buy a very large company interested in seeing this thing get market penetration. As was said before, that is a huge difference between Android and the junk you are pushing. An ecosystem is going to be vibrant with Android and people can make money on it.

Edited 2008-10-06 01:57 UTC

Reply Score: 2

It's never too late for AmigaOS
by jack_perry on Sun 5th Oct 2008 16:26 UTC
jack_perry
Member since:
2005-07-06

Lean, mean, time-tested, and in legal jeopardy. What's not to like? :-)

Reply Score: 4

RE: It's never too late for AmigaOS
by helf on Mon 6th Oct 2008 02:31 UTC in reply to "It's never too late for AmigaOS"
helf Member since:
2005-07-06

It's not FOSS!!111 or Linux!!11!!oneoneonoeneoenene

Reply Score: 2

hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

AROS ;)

Reply Score: 2

helf Member since:
2005-07-06

I forget about AROS ;)

Reply Score: 2

StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

But... but... is it free as in Free "you make take our lives, but you'll never take our" FREEDOM?

Reply Score: 2

daniel.himmelein
Member since:
2007-09-28

OpenBinder is the backbone of Android and was originally developed at Be and later at Palm for Cobalt. See http://www.osnews.com/story/13674.
Now Dianne Hackborn and maybe some other former Cobalt members work for Google on Android.
If Palm switches to Anroid they are just going back to their roots with Cobalt.

Reply Score: 1

hobgoblin Member since:
2005-07-06

interesting, im guessing this was folded into android after google bought android inc.?

Reply Score: 2

chaosvoyager Member since:
2005-07-06

OpenBinder is the backbone of Android and was originally developed at Be and later at Palm for Cobalt.

OpenBinder is completely broken in Android as far as I'm concerned. Several defining features of OpenBinder (such as the object lifetime rules) have been subverted to fit it in with Androids bizarre memory management.

The OpenBinder docs have been moved to open-binder.org, and you may have to convert a few links there which still point to the old openbinder.org site to get to the right page. So don't just take my word for it, compare what's described there to how OpenBinder is actually implemented in Android, and make up your own mind.

For another Palm scion similar to Android, check out hikerproject.org.

Reply Score: 1

Dmitry Grinberg Interview on TamsPalm
by xoulis on Tue 7th Oct 2008 16:15 UTC
xoulis
Member since:
2006-05-25

Dmitry Grinberg is maybe the best developer for the palmOS platform and here is a part of his interview..

"I currently am finishing my own OS -DGOS, guess what it stands for :-). It is not based on anything, and written entirely by me. It had a pretty efficient scheduler, memory-separated processes, and a really cool driver system. The exciting part? It includes a PalmOS subsystem. This means it had binary compatibility with all existing PalmOS apps."
I believe that if it comes out eventually we will see something far superior to android. Just take a look at his PowerSDHC driver....

Full interview: http://tamspalm.tamoggemon.com/2008/09/24/interview-with-dmitry-gri...

Reply Score: 1