Talkin' Pre -- Week ending 25 September | webOS Nation

Talkin' Pre -- Week ending 25 September

by Annie Latham Mon, 28 Sep 2009 7:24 pm EDT

A lot happen in the world of Palm this week.  The first week of fall had its ups and downs.  So without further ado, let's talk Pre!

Palm managed to boost its war chest, raising nearly $360 million.

The Palm Pixi is continuing to garner a lot of attention.  It "did" the Emmys circuit.  It also made eWeek's "10 High-Tech Gadgets for the Holidays" list. The write-up that accompanied the slide show stated, "The smaller cousin of the Palm Pre comes with a variety of consumer-oriented features, including the addition of Yahoo and LinkedIn integration to Palm Synergy."

On the not so good side, Palm's attempt to "justify" its approach to hooking into Apple iTunes using the USB port got soundly 'dissed.' On Tuesday, it was reported that the USB Implementers Forum, the industry group that oversees the universal serial bus standard, had finally responded to Palm’s claim that Apple is “hampering competition” by repeatedly disabling the Palm Pre’s ability to synch with iTunes–and it’s not looking good for Palm. The group not only dismissed Palm’s claim that Apple has violated its USB-IF Membership Agreement, it also took issue with Palm’s alleged use of Apple’s vendor identification number, which it says violates USB-IF policy. Not bueno!

That story died a fairly quick death as others leaped to the forefront.

About midweek, John Paczkowski of All Things Digital, Digital Daily, did a post about how Palm remains a "show me" story.  Apparently, in a note to clients on Wednesday, Susquehanna Financial analyst Jeffrey Fidicaro said,

“Palm is still a turnaround story with its financial success reliant on the newly released webOS operating system and new devices in an increasingly competitive smartphone market... While we anticipate Palm to expand its carrier partners both in the U.S. and internationally, and expect sell-in unit shipment growth to ramp accordingly, we believe the current valuation reflects an optimistic adoption rate of webOS devices."

Speaking of expanding its carrier partners, last week there were stories about the Pre landing in the UK at mobile operator O2.  Total Telecom noted the O2's price plans match those it charges for the iPhone.

One thing that couldn't be missed was the incredible amount of back and forth regarding whether Verizon was going to carry the Palm Pre. Things sure got ugly too. Eric Savitz of Tech Trader Daily had a good write-up seeming to indicate that the Verizon deal was still on. He quoted Deutsche Bank analyst Jonathan Goldberg who said:

"We believe the press reports late Thursday afternoon that Verizon would not launch the Palm Pre are incorrect. Our checks continue to point to healthy carrier demand for the Pre early in calendar 2010. We believe Palm has placed orders with the supply chain for another version of the Pre with features highly consistent with a Verizon launch.”

Also on Friday, a MocoNews post talked about the money Palm raised and seemed to indicate "no worries" on the handset launch front.

We also heard how well the Palm Pre was doing against the Apple iPhone in terms of garnering mindshare. According to new research from Interpret, Palm has seemingly demonstrated that other brands "can successfully launch smartphones that not only match the iPhone's glow, but can stand alone in their own right."

For developers, Palm has bolstered their developer relations team with the addition of Ben Galbraith and Dion Almaer. They are both co-founders of the popular site and have led a team creating developer tools for Mozilla. They are also widely recognized as experts in Java and other Web technologies.

A sub-$80 Pre?  On Saturday, Wal-Mart Wireless showed the Palm Pre at an unheard of $79.99 after $100 LetsTalk mail-in rebate (with FREE shipping!).

Right now it looks like this deal was a limited-time doorbuster, but only time will tell if it'll be a "real deal."

That's a wrap!