Friday, July 14, 2006

Palm, Vodafone To Launch 3G Treo

Sci-Tech Today reports that "Palm (PALM) has hooked up with Vodafone (VOD) to deliver a Treo smartphone that will run on the global wireless operator's third-generation (3G) network, letting business users and consumers take advantage of push e-mail, streaming media, and other bandwidth-intensive applications." According to the article, "the smartphone apparently will be available to Vodafone customers in the UK, Germany, Spain, Italy, and the Netherlands before the end of the year, and will run the Microsoft (MSFT) Windows Mobile operating system."

IDC analyst David Linsalata thought that "introducing a 3G smartphone in Europe is a smart move, especially given that the region is well ahead of the U.S. in deploying next-generation wireless networks." He said, "And partnering with a major wireless player like Vodafone will certainly boost [Palm's] presence in Europe where they have not done as well as they have in this country."

Linsalta noted that "high-speed voice-data networks have obvious appeal to the enterprise, but the challenge is to convince consumers to sign on." He said, "We are seeing a greater understanding that devices like the Treo can be used during leisure time, as well as at work. Microsoft has done a good job in providing a better media player with the Windows Mobile OS that makes it easier to obtain music and video on new handhelds."