What the Heck Is a Mobile Companion Anyway?

Built to work with a smartphone, Palm's new Foleo straddles the line between a PDA and full-blown ultra-mobile PC. But just how useful will it be?

June 7, 2007

1 Min Read
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What the Heck Is a Mobile Companion, Anyway??

Palm's announcement of a new category of mobile device--what it's calling the Foleo "mobile companion"--straddles the line between a PDA and a full-blown UMPC (ultra-mobile PC). The Foleo is built to work with a smartphone, with the phone providing data and e-mail connectivity and the companion offering a laptop-like screen and keyboard.

It's unclear just how useful the Foleo will be, though it does include Documents To Go to allow for the viewing, creation and editing of Microsoft Office files. However, such conversion programs often fail to completely provide the same experience one has with the real program. It's unlikely users will ditch their laptops in favor of a Treo and a Foleo, and if weight and size are a concern, a true UMPC may be the best bet.

On the IT side, proponents of mobile device management won't want these things floating around the enterprise after they've spent a considerable amount of time and money to manage handhelds.

Our editors debated the merits of the Foleo on NWC.com. Visit the Daily Blog to follow the conversation.

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