Palm only way forward

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1. Come up with products that is consistent (not sometimes work, sometimes don’t, see this old post from PreCentral guys).

2. Also come up with some smart ads (with Sprint and Verizon), something like this one from German carrier O2.

O2 has about 11% market share in Germany per Yahoo Answers.

1) Wiki entry for Jon Rubinstein (CEO of Palm). Very impressive resume. But keep in mind Jon is taking additional responsibilities now that he is a CEO: besides his strength product development, he needs to deal with investors, suppliers and carriers.

2) Palm is in a very competitive (cut throat in some sense) race, namely the war on smart phones: iPhone is the leader in the pack. Blackberry, while aging, still does phenomenal marketing and sells very well. Google entered the race with Android (which developed for a few years) and boat loads of cash (and followers like Motorola and HTC). Last but not least, Mr. Softie (Microsoft) and Nokia are not backing down, they are working on next generation smart phones. All these bigger competitors have much more resource, if Palm could not come up with a compelling product (aka something like iPhone), Palm will fade away.

Blaming others (suppliers, carriers) is NOT the solution. Ridicule the competitor (iPhone etc) is not the long term solution either. Self-deprecating is OK (hint: Geico ad).

3) A fair assessment of Palm’s current status (Yahoo tech blog).

4) Why Elevation Partners Invested $425M in Palm (Yahoo Tech-ticker>).

5) Bloomberg Grills Roger McNamee (Youtube)

6) Comment from AllThingsD (article here), on app development for Palm webOS.
JohnDoey 1 hour ago
3 people liked this.
Getting Web developers on board for Palm apps is not going to happen. At the same time as Palm has been making a way to make Web apps that seem to be native on Palm, the W3C has been making a way to make Web apps that seem to be native on everything. If you have Web development skills, you can make an HTML5 app and it runs on Palm, Android, Nokia, iPhone, iPod touch, iPad, Mac, Windows, Linux, and soon Blackberry. It can run when the device has no Web connection, it can store a database locally on the device. On the Apple devices, it will be GPU-accelerated.

So what Palm is really offering is a way to hobble your Web apps so it only runs on Palm. They’re not just competing with iPhone apps, they’re competing with HTML5, with the Web itself. It’s less than Web apps, not more than Web apps.

What Palm needs to do if they want apps is create a native programming interface in C. Android’s biggest native app problem is they are written in Java. You can’t port desktop C code over like on the iPhone.

Running Web apps is expected, you’re supposed to get that for free as on every other platform. The value add is native apps that can do things that aren’t possible on the Web, aren’t possible with Web tools and languages. On iPhone, you can run interpreted HTML5 Web apps or you can run compiled C native apps, your choice, it covers all the bases. The native apps have a reason to exist because they’re NOT made with Web technologies, so you can work in C, you can port C code, you get compiled performance, you have programming interfaces that don’t exist on the Web yet.

There are many iPhone apps that simply cannot be ported to other phones because there are no other phones with a desktop class C-based object-oriented app platform. On iPhone you literally have a Mac-level app platform. The only thing that will compete with that is another desktop-class app platform.

Palm spent too much time and effort on the hardware and not enough on the software. They should have hired an Apple software guy, not hardware guy. Pre has 2 screens, 2 keyboards, 2 batteries, and only 1 programming interface with no GPU support. iPhone has 1 screen, 1 keyboard, 1 battery, and 2 programming interfaces, both of which have GPU support.

So it’s not 3rd party software developers who are holding Palm back, it’s Palm’s internal software that is holding them back.

Remember that for the first year of iPhone you could make apps for it using Web tools and the world yawned. Then Apple unveiled a native C interface and it was like fireworks going off.

(the following was written on Feb 23, 2010 when couple analysts downgrade the stock)

Are PALM Pre, Pixi and webOS here to stay?
Big drop of Palm stock today after analyst downgrade. But how credit worthy are analysts?

quote “brmiller1976” at PreCentral (scroll down to comments section)
Remember, the “analyst community” also declared that Palm had halted all production of the Pre and Pixi and was on the brink of closing shop, based on a “factory spot check” that turned out to be a routine suspension of production for Chinese New Year.

brmiller1976 is probably biased toward Palm (quote comment in same article again):
What “blockbuster features that people have come to rely on” does the Pre lack and DROID have?

What hassles does webOS have that Android doesn’t have? My experience with Android — on myTouch 3G, G1, and HTC Hero — is that it’s woefully patchworky and filled with hassles.

For everyday stuff like Microsoft Exchange integration, web browsing, availability of *good* apps, ease of use, and ease of application switching (for multitasking), webOS totally dusts the incarnations of Android I’ve used.

For the middle market who wants a smartphone, there are really only two that would pass the “mom test” (i.e. giving one to my mother without instructions and asking her to use it) — webOS and iPhone. People like my mother are the mass technology consumers.

In terms of a business device, for the corporate market, there are really only two solutions I’d use for business — webOS and BlackBerry.

And for fun, there are really only two solutions I’d use — webOS and iPhone.

webOS is the “overlap.” It allows no-compromises productivity, easy use, and no-compromises fun (with the PDK). That’s not a hurdle, it’s a feat.

Submitted by brmiller1976 on Tue, 23 Feb.

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