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Palm to Unleash New User Friendly OS and Hardware at CES [U]

Wired.com explains that Palm is expected to unveil a new operating system as well as new hardware at the upcoming Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas come January.

shipping boxRoughly ten years ago Palm was a highly active and extremely innovative company. With the Palm Pilot, and later on with its Treo smartphones, Palm helped shape the mobile market as we know it today. Even though the company was based on a series of products and an operating system that seems obsolete today, back then it was very well received.

Not surprisingly, as companies like Research in Motion and Apple have unleashed next-gen handheld devices, Palm has had an incredibly tough time surviving. Ever since announcing and canceling the Foleo, Palm hasn’t been able to gain any traction in today’s cut-throat mobile market.

As it turns out, Palm has insiders buzzing about a press conference at CES. This is rumored to be a showcase for the unveiling of a completely redone, user friendly operating system, alongside some much needed new hardware.

“It’s quite likely, actually close to a certainty, that they will show a new OS, new user interface and probably new hardware,” says Lawrence Harris, an analyst for Wall Street brokerage firm CL King & Associates. “This is Palm’s last shot to prove it has what it takes to survive in a very competitive market.”

“The good news for Palm is that folks are still talking about them and those making the trek to CES will likely pay attention to what they’re saying,” Michael Gartenberg, vice president at research firm Jupitermedia, wrote on his blog. “If this event disappoints it’s going to be hard for them to muster attention in the future.”

Interestingly, as Wired points out, Palm has hired a few top executives from Apple over the last 18 months. Among them Jon Rubinstein, who was crucial in the development of the iPod, Paul Mercer, a former Apple engineer, and Lynn Fox, former head of Mac Public Relations. Over the last year or so, there have been nearly no leaks or rumors surrounding Palm’s future plans, which is the way Apple wishes it could be for them. Even though Palm should welcome the idea of free publicity, if these former Apple employees are influencing the company, then being tight-lipped is a must.

Similar to last January, 2009’s CES will overlap with Apple’s annual Macworld Conference. With CES running from January 8-11, and Macworld running January 6-9, many folks will have a hard time attending both events.

Updates: Palm CES event invitation via Engadget.

palm_ces_invite

Comments [4]

4 Comments to “Palm to Unleash New User Friendly OS and Hardware at CES [U]

MiiLover @ December 13th, 2008 at 4:50 pm
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I sense a tone of optimism on Palm’s behalf from this article. Am I wrong?

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discountOS @ December 13th, 2008 at 5:20 pm
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@MiiLover: Probably not, I’ll bet they’re excited. Nothing wrong with a little healthy competition. It’s much needed.

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dave @ December 15th, 2008 at 4:37 pm
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From the looks of Palm, I think this will be a public demo of their next OS in an effort to get somebody to buy the company, not to get individuals to purchase a Palm device 6-12 months later when they are actually available…

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ishy @ December 15th, 2008 at 4:42 pm
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Who would be interested in Palm these days? Something’s telling me they have one more chance at wowing people over to their hardware and os. If not, they can either go open source and join Google with Android while entirely giving up on their os, or just call it a day.

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