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Talkin' Treo

Fri Mar 24, 2006 - 2:30 PM EST - By Annie Latham

Week ending 24 March 2006

Palm quarterly profit rises on strong Treo sales

The biggest momentum story this week was Palm’s earnings. Palm reported third-quarter earnings and revenue that surpassed analysts' estimates. For the quarter ended March 3, Palm earned 19 cents on sales of $388.5 million, compared with 10 cents and revenue of $285.3 million in the year-ago period. Per Thompson First Call, analysts were expecting 16 cents a share and revenue of $374.7 million.

What’s more astounding is the number of Treos that shipped last quarter.
The company said it shipped 564,000 Treos to carriers in the quarter, more than double the 279,000 units shipped in the year-ago period.
In anticipation of earnings, The Wall Street Journal had a story on the front page of Thursday’s Marketplace section (B1) about how Palm’s Treo capitalized on the whole BlackBerry situation.
"I find the Treo is more usable than the BlackBerry," Mr. Beery says. "It's really the only other option we saw on the market."
Joe Berry is the chief information officer at US Airways. He is one of many executives who evaluated the Treo smartphone as an alternative to Research In Motion’s BlackBerry.
"It's hard to find a BlackBerry alternative that is tried-and-true and tested," says Kevin Burden, an analyst at IDC. "But the Treo is known." .
If you can get a hold of the Journal or have online access, check out this article. It’ll make you feel really good about being part of the growing Treo community.

Another story worth checking out was written by Owen Thomas at Business 2.0:
"While the company is set to launch three new smartphones this year -- including a rumored "700p" model with high-speed Internet access for Sprint -- it may not be able to rely on them to drive profits higher.

That's likely why, even as the company celebrates the tenth anniversary this month of its original Palm Pilot personal digital assistant as well as the success of its Treo smartphone line, it's looking ahead to inventing new mobile computing devices.

Indeed, lately co-founder Jeff Hawkins has been referring to Palm's secret third product category, in addition to its PDA and smartphone lines, which features advanced multimedia capabilities. He has, however, steadfastly refused to elaborate beyond that."
And in case you were wondering about just how big the smartphone market is projected to be, ABI Research has just published some numbers. 2006 will bring a growth spurt in the smartphone market that will see worldwide shipments more than double. They forecast that 123 million smartphones will be shipped in 2006, which grows the smartphone share of the overall mobile phone market to 15%. The factors driving momentum include: demand for high-speed mobile data transfer via 3G and WiFi networks, lowering prices, rich choice, expanded functionality and longer batter life.

And the momentum continues…

No doubt that Palm’s earnings made the Treo community joyful. Well this announcement from Sling Media just added to the euphoria…and may just be the “killer app” that gets 650 owners to move over to the 700w...

Sling Media Turns Mobile Phones and Handheld Computers into Personal TVs with the Release of SlingPlayer™ Mobile

Sling Media, Inc., a digital lifestyle products company, today announced the release of SlingPlayer™ Mobile as part of a public beta program for Slingbox owners. SlingPlayer Mobile is a new software package that gives Slingbox owners the ability to watch and control their home TV from any network-enabled mobile phone or handheld computer (PDA) powered by Windows Mobile. The SlingPlayer Mobile software available today is compatible with devices that run Windows Mobile Pocket PC 5.0 and 2003 Second Edition. Sling Media will also deliver a version for non-touchscreen devices based on Windows Mobile Smartphone within the next month. Learn more here.

New York Times technology columnist, David Pogue, wrote an interesting story (registration required) on the Sling Media. In his wrap-up, he talks about Slingbox vs. other options currently available:
The Slingbox isn't the only video-to-go option, of course. TiVoToGo, the iPod TV store and Archos pocket players all let you carry TV shows and movies on your travels — but only if you record material and transfer it before the trip. Orb (orb.com) is free and also works with some cellphones, but gets its video from a PC with a TV tuner card, not from your actual TV and video recorder. And, of course, your cellphone company will be happy to sell you short TV shows — a canned selection of their choosing, not yours — if you're willing to pay a monthly fee and watch exclusively on your phone (not your laptop).

The Slingbox and its simple, satisfying new cellphone/palmtop player join those portable personal-video options. It seems clear that along with traditional TV schedules and traditional TV channels, the next victim of high-tech progress may be the traditional TV couch.
More Palm News:

Because their earnings announcement took place so late in the week, it was relatively quiet at Palm Headquarters with just one other official announcement and a few other stories of note.

Palm Treo “Win”
On Thursday morning, Palm announced another “win.” This time it was with Monster, the leading global online career and recruitment resource.
Palm announced that Palm Treo smartphones are keeping Monster employees connected nationwide. The leading global online careers and recruitment resource has deployed several hundred Treo smartphones running GoodLink from Good Technology for access to email, calendar, contacts, notes and tasks on the Sprint Nationwide PCS Network.

The Treo smartphone offers many advantages: it easily integrates with Microsoft Outlook, has a short end-user learning curve, is based on an open standards platform, and gives companies great scalability for the future and a high return on investment.

Pilot Turns 10; Palm at Crossroads
"You could imagine my shock and horror when I came back to find out we had this relationship with Microsoft," said Mark Bercow, senior vice president of business development at the Sunnyvale, Calif., company. "But it was pretty clear that it was the right thing to do. Having the Treo 700w, based on the Windows Mobile platform gives us an opportunity to go after markets that weren't there before."
At eWeek.com, Carmen Nobel wrote a story that reflects on the history of Palm, and delves a bit into where they are going. Here are a few highlights (some of this isn’t surprising to those who follow Palm closely):

  • By the year's end, Palm will offer software that lets Treo phones connect to Research In Motion's BlackBerry Enterprise Server.
  • While the company still sells traditional PDAs, the future lies mainly in smart phones, officials said.
  • Besides the Treo 700w, Palm plans to launch three more devices this year, including one that runs on high-speed UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications System) networks, said Ken Wirt, senior vice president of worldwide marketing at Palm.
  • The company plans to continue supporting Windows Mobile, in large part to appease international carriers. However, it also will continue to support the Palm operating system, officials said.

    Palm Opens More New Retail Stores
    According to Ryan over at PalmInfocenter.com, Palm has opened a few new retail stores in recent weeks. Like most (but not all) Palm's retail locations these stores are located within airport terminals. The new stores now listed on the Palm retail website include: Charlotte Douglas International Airport (main terminal), Orlando International Airport and in Ohio in the Cleveland Hopkins Int'l Airport.

    March 700w Madness: Palm’s Special Deal on the Treo 700w Purchases
    Palm is currently running a special deal for those purchasing a Verizon Treo 700w smartphone from Palm.com between March 20 and March 31, 2006. The deal includes a Palm Wireless Headset and Microsoft Pocket Streets application (valued at $79.99 and $24.95 respectively) for free.

    Elsewhere in the World of Treo…

    Earthcomber and DiscoverOurTown Launch Free Mobile GPS-Enabled Guide for Exploring Cities Across America
    This week, Earthcomber, a mobile service that matches people’s favorite interests to spots around them (see Review), and DiscoverOurTown, an Internet city guide for 2,000 USA cities, announced a new mobile GPS-enabled format for Treo 650 and Treo 700w smartphones.

    Per the announcement, anyone interested in exploring towns of all sizes along America’s highways will enjoy DiscoverOurTown’s free listings. Travelers select favorite types of amusements, eateries, historical points and other interests, and Earthcomber alerts them to nearby attractions that match.

    All users of Earthcomber automatically receive the DiscoverOurTown listings when they download Earthcomber maps and location data.

    Got Remote Access? Avvenu Powers New Maxthon Access Service
    Avvenu, a free service that allows you to remotely access your home or office PC, announced that Maxthon, creators of the Maxthon Internet Browser, has chosen Avvenu technology to power its new Maxthon Access remote access and sharing service.

    Developed in collaboration with Avvenu, Maxthon Access works with the award-winning Maxthon Internet Browser to provide remote access and sharing capabilities to Maxthon's users. Since its release, the Maxthon browser has been downloaded over 50 million times, and is rapidly becoming one of the world's leading internet browsers

    The free service lets business users and consumers securely access their office and home computers from wherever they have access to the Maxthon Browser In addition to accessing their own content, Maxthon Access users can quickly and securely share access to their content with colleagues, friends and family.

    EasyReach Debuts Online Store Giving Road Warriors Immediate Access to Documents on Their Desktop
    Ever have one of those “I’ll get it for you when I get back to my desk” discussions while out at lunch or visiting a client? EasyReach has just made it easier for you to “get it” to your customer immediately. They provide a remote desktop search service that enables users to instantly find any file or e-mail on their desktop PC and then have it delivered to any email address using a Treo smartphone.

    This week, EasyReach made it easier to obtain their solution. They just announced the grand opening of their online store. A special "grand opening" price makes it possible for users to purchase the EasyReach solution for as little as $49.95 per year.

    This looks like yet another reason to ditch your laptop/notebook computer when on the road because your Treo is the only device you’ll need.

    Namco Networks Expands Presence with Online Retail Store—ClubNamco.com
    PAC-MAN is just one of the arcade games that Namco brought to us back in the day. Years later, Namco Network is at it again. They’ve created a way for you to join the massive community of PAC-MAN and Namco fans in reliving all those great memories, with fun, high quality, collectible products based on your favorite arcade games.

    This week, Namco Networks, a leading publisher and developer of wireless games and content that provide instant fun on the go, announced that PAC-MAN fans everywhere can purchase exclusive Namco game and character-themed memorabilia from www.clubNAMCO.com

    Recognizing the overwhelming consumer demand for souvenirs that capture the essence of Namco‚s games, the company is expanding its online presence to provide merchandise from these arcade classics that have become mega-hits on the mobile platform. In addition to these popular collectibles, in the near future, Namco Networks plans to offer exclusive video game ringtones and cell phone wallpaper on the site.

    Recent Treo 700w Reviews:

    Microsoft, Palm Create Unlikely hit

    Andy Kaiser of The Grand Rapids Press has written his review of the Treo 700w. He notes Microsoft and Palm, in an odd marriage, have combined forces to give us the Treo 700w cellphone from Verizon. Based on Palm's excellent Treo hardware, the Treo 700w runs Microsoft's Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system. The companies claim their strengths overcome the weaknesses of the other.
    When I first heard about the Treo 700w running Windows Mobile 5.0, my heart sank. I really like Palm's operating system. Yes, it's not as functional as Windows Mobile, but that's also a plus: It's more stable, battery life is excellent and the device's speed is fast.
    Treo vies with BlackBerry for Top Spot
    UPI Technology Correspondent, Michelle Alexandria wrote an interesting story about her Treo 700w experience
    Overall, the Treo 700w is a very nice phone and a good alternative to the BlackBerry; the phone has just about every feature that you could ask for, but at almost $500 those bells and whistles don't come cheap.
    Recent Treo Central Reviews:

    Audible Air – By Harv Laser

    "AudibleAir is a blast to use. Its feature set is very rich and its interface is logical and pretty. Support is top notch. If you’re already hooked on Audible, now you can grab the books and subscriptions you buy anywhere you go, no desktop, no laptop, just your Treo and air."

    Seidio Skinned Shield Holster – By James Hromadka

    "If you have a skin case, the best way to carry it is with the Seidio Skinned Shield Holster. It securely holds the Treo at your side yet is simple to remove.
    …if you are one of those people that doesn't want a naked Treo but wants the slimness of a skin case, the Skinned Shield Holster is the way to go."

    StuffBak – By Douglas Morse

    "StuffBak is a service and a promise. You slap their screaming yellow and black stickers on your valuable goods, and gamble that people who find your lost items will call a toll free number to report their find. StuffBak acts as a high tech lost and found department."

    Reviews from Elsewhere in the Treo Community

    Cool Application:

    TAKEphONE from SHS Software - The folks over at PowerPage.org just weighed in on TAKEphONE, a Treo 650 application that makes finding and calling contacts incredibly easy. It also makes operating the Treo truly one-handed and is an indispensable application.

    Cool Game (s):

    My Little Tank Review on the Palm Treo 700w Platform - Posted at MyTreo.net is a review by Gary Imhoff on a game for the Treo 700w.

    “…the game play quickly and allowed me forget about the warm and fuzzy name - or at least completely rationalize that it does have the word "Tank" in it (definitely manly), and as far as the word "Little" goes, well, that's only a reference to the fact that on a game screen that's about 1.5 inches square, the (manly) tank is about 1/10th of an inch square, or, put another way, well, "little". Manliness safely intact…go for it.”

    Star Command Game for Palm OS - Ryan over at PalmInfocenter.com posted a review of Star Command, which is a Palm OS re-creation of the old Star Fleet game of the early 80s.
    I was excited to recently discover that this game exists for Palm OS on PalmAddicts, as I spent countless hours enjoying this on a classic Mac ages ago. In this game you control a starship and travel the galaxy fighting enemies in order to stay alive and rise in rank. Names have been slightly changed for trademark purposes, so now you fight Krutons (instead of Klingons) and Zingers (instead of Romulans).

    Cool Cases:

    Palm Treo 700w LeatherSkin Case - Mobile Gadget News took a look at Sena’s LeatherSkin Case for the Treo 700w.
    "Starting at $39.99 Sena delivers a high quality case at a great price. The case had a thought out design allowing full use of the 700w while in the case. It comes packaged in very professional packing and ships quickly. The thin but sturdy leather provides good protection while keeping the sleek design of the 700w. If you are looking for a quality case at a quality price, check out the Sena Palm Treo 700w LeatherSkin Case."
    Seidio Premium Pouch Leather Case Review for Treo 650 & 700w - Derek Simmerman over at MyTreo.Net writes:

    "If you are looking for a case and like the holster style, this is the one for you. It will almost protect your Treo as well as hard case and still look very stylish at the same time. I don't think you'll have problems with this case standing up to the test of time: the stitching is so heavy and the structure so sound that it will probably outlast your Treo!"

    Overall this has been an awesome week for the Treo Community.

    That’s a wrap!

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