Friday, January 09, 2009

Palm is innovating again

As you might know, I have been a fan of Palm for years. Seeing the company disappearing in the background has been painful. The people that brought us the Palm Pilot and HotSync were just not innovating anymore. The company was dying.

Now they are back.

The Palm Pre and the webOS, announced at CES, are pure innovation. They managed to take the iPhone and improve on it, which is remarkable (many tried, nobody made it so far...).

Why I think this might be the comeback for Palm:
  1. The device looks slick. I am not a fan of sliding keyboard, but this one seems ok. I am sure we will hear "an iPhone with a keyboard" quite often. And this is a real keyboard, not the suicide attempt of RIM with the Storm
  2. The UI of the OS looks slick. The concept of cards, the gestures (I like the one where you throw away your application), the support for multi-touch. From the first look, it seems "an iPhone with copy and paste". Not a small feature. Look for Apple to finally add it, if the Pre has any quick success
  3. The development environment seems to be the nirvana of developers. What I have been talking about for a while: a web development system (Ajax, HTML, Javascript, CSS) for local apps. Palm claims all their apps use the same system. If it is true, they might have solved the issue of how to attract developers to build applications for this platform. Developers will come. "An iPhone with an easy development environment". BTW, the OS underneath is Linux, which is just cool.
  4. They have a transparent synching technology called Synergy. It is what MobileMe is to the iPhone or the Android Gmail integration. But it works. And not just for or accounts. From the people that brought us HotSync comes the future of syncing. Ok, a bit too much enthusiasm, maybe... But the engine Palm is using is the best of the best in the world (wink wink ;-) "An iPhone that syncs with the world".
  5. The accessory to power the phone without wires is soo cool. "An iPhone without wires, not even to charge it". I love this one. If you looked behind my desk, you would know why... This is the future.
Bottom line: Palm is innovating. A lot. They are back. I am happy.