The latest Palm smartphone running the Nova operating system will be launched Thursday. The new phone will have a full QWERTY keyboard that will slide down under a portrait-oriented touchscreen. We’ll have a mock-up shortly.
The new operating system is described as “amazing” and there will be a full software bazaar on launch. It will have media playback functions along with standard Palm calendar, email, and contact functionality.
As expected, the phone is described as “iPhone-like” and will probably be sourced by HTC like the Palm Pro. The official Palm announcement should happen this Thursday at CES.
Palm is poised to make what some analysts are calling its last stand at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show, where it is expected to introduce its long-awaited Linux-based operating system.
Code-named Nova, it will power a new generation of smart phones and potentially other devices. The move is Palm’s best chance to get back into the smart phone market, which it pioneered with its Treo handsets and later ceded to companies such as BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion and Apple with its iPhone.
The stakes are high for Palm, which risks permanent irrelevancy or worse if it can’t generate some buzz and momentum around its combination of hardware and software.
“The bottom line is this is Palm’s last gasp. They have to come out with a new OS to make themselves relevant again,” said Jack Gold, analyst for J.Gold Associates. “Their old OS is a geriatric case. It’s been around for a long time and has been marginally improved, but it hasn’t kept pace with the iPhone or (Google) Androids of the world.”