Editor's Corner: Palm's new handhelds; Palm OS not dead

Palm recently announced two new PDAs: the Z22, a low-end PDA most notable for its $99 price tag, and the T|X, a new mid-market Tungsten PDA with built-in WiFi. I know I'm supposed to hate these old-fashioned PDAs, but I've been playing with the T|X for a few weeks, and it's really grown on me. Granted, it has an increasingly outdated OS, it isn't much fun away from a hotspot and, of course, it isn't a phone. But on the other hand, it's got a big, bright screen (twice the size of the iPod Video's screen), a decent Web browser and a colossal selection of free or cheap applications. Like the Treo, the T|X supports the MobiTV streaming video service, but I can't think of many situations where I would want to watch TV and also happen to be near a hotspot. The T|X has a list price of $299, much cheaper than a high-end smartphone or Palm's LifeDrive. I think device would have flown off the shelves if it were released a few years ago, but now it's sales are limited by the size of a shrinking PDA market. Kudos, Palm, on finally listening to your fans by including WiFi on a device that doesn't cost $500, but I have a challenge for you: Merge the T|X with the Treo and I'll be first in line.

Also: Palm OS is not dead! A recent article in Computer Business Review said that Access, the Japanese firm in the process of acquiring PalmSource, intends to kill the Palm OS. The CBR article has since been discredited, and brighthand has a good explanation of what happened and what the future really does hold for the Palm OS. I'm not too surprised: the Palm reps I've spoken to seem very committed to the Palm OS, and I would not at all be surprised to see a Palm OS version of the Treo 700. - Eli