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What Palm Sees in Linux

Too little, too late? That certainly seems to be the case as Palm--which helped create the PDA market but has seen its market share obliterated by "smart-phones" from Microsoft, Nokia and Research In Motion--revealed plans to produce a Linux-based mobile OS later this year.

On the plus side, a mobile OS based on a Linux kernel instantly broadens the development community for Palm. Support for simultaneous voice/ data and app multithreading, missing in Palm OS, would be welcome as well. Palm's recent acquisition of ChatterEmail as an answer to BlackBerry push e-mail is also important.

But anyone who's been holding his breath for Palm to make a game-changing move has probably long since passed on due to asphyxiation. It will be a tall order indeed for Palm to catch up not only with RIM's BlackBerry but with rapidly proliferating Windows Mobile offerings--including Palm's own increasingly popular Windows-based Treo. --Sean Ginevan, [email protected]