Palm predicts smartphone growth from Europe, Asia

Palm said Treo phone sales in Europe and Asia would spur growth in the next three to five years, but declined to discuss the topic of most interest to investors, rumors it is for sale, according to a Reuters report.

The Reuters report also quoted Palm executives at a meeting with analysts as saying that the market for smartphones will grow to $36 billion by 2009.

'We think there is a big wave coming in this whole mobile computing revolution, which is becoming a bigger part of the overall mobile phone business. We have an enormous opportunity "&brkbar;,' Palm CEO Ed Colligan was quoted by the Reuters report, as saying.

The report also said Palm, whose Treo phone competes with RIM's Blackberry, would deliver new products, and suggested it was developing operating system software based on the open-source Linux platform.

But executives declined analysts' repeated requests for specifics, saying only that information would come soon, the report said.

Colligan also refused to comment on market chatter about the potential for Palm to be acquired, which analysts say has helped boost its stock by about 20% so far this year, the reuters report said.
Earlier in March, sources said Palm had hired Morgan Stanley to pursue a buyer, the report further said.

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