A Requiem for Palm

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If you haven’t yet heard, the next Treo smartphone from Palm will run on Windows, which means the Palm as we know it is pretty much dead.

I gave up on Palm when they refused to update their desktop software for Mac OS X—it still works (barely), but as Mac/Palm user Tracey Hoyt will tell you, it ain’t pretty, especially when compared to Apple’s more elegant and polished alternative, iSync.

And Treos themselves are pretty unreliable; so bad, in fact, that a class action lawsuit has been launched against Palm in the state of California. At one point I was seeing rumours about a Linux-based Palm OS, but I guess Palm chose instead to be assimilated by the Windows Mobile Platform. It’s a big coup for Microsoft; with Palm under their belt, they now only have to play catch up with Symbian and RIM.

The good news for the 95% of us who don’t have a smartphone is this: Some of the best features of these high-powered devices are trickling down to cheaper handsets—and any cell phone that can sync a phonebook with a computer is plenty smart for me!

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