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Looking at the Palm Foleo

June 1, 2007 in Other Mobile Phones

It’s been turning out badly lately for Palm. After going through takeover speculation, a lousy first quarter, a stock that went up, down and sideways, and several analyst downgrades, Palm unveiled its latest device only to suffer from intense criticism.

Palm Foleo

The Palm Foleo in all its glory.

Palm’s new device, called the Foleo, is a small, portable “mobile companion” with a 10-inch screen that’s designed to wirelessly connect to other mobile phones (such as the Treo). That’s all. Out of the box, the Foleo actually doesn’t accomplish very much other than functioning as a large-scale Bluetooth keyboard – it has no hard drive and very little software (no music or video player, for example).

It’s not a complete piece of junk, however. The Foleo is Linux-based, which means developers can create software that will hopefully take advantage of the device’s capabilities. That is, if it has any. And compared to similar “UMPCs” (ultra mobile PCs) and palmtops that go for as much as $1500 bucks, Palm’s little keyboard will retail for only $599 bucks.

But come on, If you’re going to manufacture a device that has a 10-inch screen and a full keyboard, why not just go whole-hog and turn it into a laptop? That way, at least some people will actually want to buy the Foleo, rather than scratch their heads trying to figure out what to do with it.

The Palm Foleo

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