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Much riding on success _ or failure _ of Palm Pre
Mobile Devices
Written by Gizmo   
Wednesday, 03 June 2009 10:39

By RACHEL METZ and DAVID TWIDDY

NEW YORK (AP) — When Palm Inc.'s and Sprint Nextel Corp.'s latest bundle of smart phone joy, the Pre, arrives Saturday, it will be entering an increasingly crowded market backed by parents that have a lot riding on its success.

The Pre — which costs $200 with a two-year service plan and rebate — might be most important to Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Palm, the very company that helped usher in the handheld computing era with the original Palm Pilot in 1996. These days Palm needs a resurgence in a market largely dominated by Apple Inc.'s iPhone and Research In Motion Ltd.'s BlackBerry devices.

For Overland Park, Kan.-based Sprint, which has been bleeding subscribers to other wireless carriers, the Pre represents a chance to snare new customers while getting current ones to "trade up" from a regular cell phone to the Pre and its pricier service packages, which start at $70 per month.

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