Thursday, April 29, 2010

HP Posts Slides, Transcript from Yesterday's Investor Conference Call

HP has posted the slides and a transcript from yesterday afternoon's bombshell announcement that the PC and printer maker intends to acquire Palm the troubled handset maker for $1.2 billion dollars later this year.

HP has stated that they plan to continue to develop and grow the webOS platform after Palm is integrated into the Personal Systems Group, lead by formed Palm CEO, Todd Bradley.

You can view the slides and read the transcript on

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

HP to Acquire Palm for $1.2B

Earlier today, Hewlett-Packard announced their intention to acquire troubled smartphone maker, Palm for $1.2 billion dollars, or $5.70 per common Palm share.

Palm announced the deal on their corporate blog by posting:
"In case you didn't hear, we just announced a merger with a little shop down the street called HP. That little shop happens to be the world’s largest technology company, and certainly one of the most revered companies in all of tech-land. Can you say "webOS acceleration"? We’re pretty excited, and pleased we surprised the world again."
In a separate posting, HP wrote:

“Palm’s innovative operating system provides an ideal platform to expand HP’s mobility strategy and create a unique HP experience spanning multiple mobile connected devices,” said Todd Bradley, executive vice president, Personal Systems Group, HP. “And, Palm possesses significant IP assets and has a highly skilled team. The smartphone market is large, profitable and rapidly growing, and companies that can provide an integrated device and experience command a higher share. Advances in mobility are offering significant opportunities, and HP intends to be a leader in this market.”

“We’re thrilled by HP’s vote of confidence in Palm’s technological leadership, which delivered Palm webOS and iconic products such as the Palm Pre. HP’s longstanding culture of innovation, scale and global operating resources make it the perfect partner to rapidly accelerate the growth of webOS,” said Jon Rubinstein, chairman and chief executive officer, Palm. ”We look forward to working with HP to continue to deliver industry-leading mobile experiences to our customers and business partners.”

You can read HP's full press release on the HP news release website.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Documents To Go for iPhone OS Updated

Documents To Go 3.2 for iPhone OS has landed in the Apple iTunes App Store.

The biggest updates in this release are enhancements to searching, application optimizations, and bug fixes. I'm excited to learn that the next update for Documents To Go for iPhone OS will support the iPad! I'm really looking forward to that since Documents To Go will allow you to work with native Microsoft Office documents.

DataViz is also running a special promotion to upgrade to the Premium edition of Documents To Go. On my iPod touch, using the in app upgrade option, I can step up to the Premium edition to gain Exchange attachment support and support for $4.99. Not a bad offer if you ask me.

Hit the App Store icon on your iPhone, iPod touch, or iPad to get the latest update to Documents To Go.

Monday, April 26, 2010

PUGcast: Palm Pixi Plus Review

Clemens Schuchert has a new review posted on the European Palm Pixi Plus up on the PUGCast blog site.
"The Palm Pixi Plus is Palm's first low-cost device on the European market running webOS. As with the Palm Pre, it will be offered by O2 in Germany, the UK, Ireland, and Spain. It also will be marketed throughout Europe by Vodafone and in France by the carrier SFR. Pricing across Europe is a bit confusing because carriers are not selling at a similar price tag. Thus, SFR seems to have the lowest price followed by O2 and Vodafone. At least devices from O2 are SIM-lock free and can be used globally on any 3G carrier - a normally overlooked feature and a great advantage over the other carriers. O2 yesterday announced a retail price for the Palm Pixi Plus of about 389 EUR, and today corrected it to 361 EUR in order to be more competitive."

You can read the full hands on Palm Pixi Plus review on the PUGCast website.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Palm Gets A Cool Pre Plus Ad

I'm not sure who is responsible for the ad, Palm or AT&T, but I really don't care. I just saw a cool Palm Pre ad for the new Palm Pre Plus on AT&T! Finally! An ad that shows of what Palm's hardware an webOS can do without any creepy actors!

You can also hit the link to watch it over at YouTube.


Friday, April 23, 2010

Amazon's Kindle Coming To Target

According to The Consumerist website, Amazon, feeling some pressure from the Apple iPad, will begin selling their Kindle ebook reader at early as this weekend at retail locations. The first "brick and mortar" retail chain to get the Kindle is reportedly Target.
"Now that the iPad is upon them, Amazon has finally made a deal to unleash their popular Kindle e-reader to the bricks-and-mortar retail market. Amazon has made a deal with Target that will have Kindles in some of their stores as early as this Sunday.

The first stores to get the Kindle will be in south Florida and the chain's flagship store in downtown Minneapolis. These stores should start selling Kindles on April 25."

To read the full story, visit the Consumerist website.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

DataViz - Docs To Go for webOS Update

DataViz has posted a long, long, long over due update on the status of their Documents To Go application for the Palm webOS platform on their Office Mobility Blog.
We at DataViz would like to apologize for not responding sooner to our loyal Palm customers about the availability of Documents To Go for webOS. We have felt it best to keep our public webOS discussion to a minimum until we had concrete information about our webOS products to offer you.

We are continuing our efforts to work with Palm to clear the path for a full editing version of Documents To Go. However, given the current environment at Palm, as well as the necessary collaboration with the device manufacturer that is required to bring an app like ours to a platform like webOS, our Documents To Go editor product for webOS is essentially at a standstill.

As soon as we have any additional information, we will inform you immediately.

Thanks for your passion surrounding our solution.
Kathleen McAneany
Business Manager, Documents To Go Palm

It is unfortunate that DataViz and Palm can't get things lined up and getting Documents To Go for webOS out the door. Docs To Go is one of my favorite mobile applications and for the last 10 months I've had to go it (almost) alone as webOS only includes DataViz's Doc View application.

The good news is that if you are on virtually any other smartphone OS, you can get rich document viewing and editing capabilities via Documents To Go.

Here's to hoping that we get Documents To Go for the Pre's birthday which is coming up on June 6th.

What's On Your iPad?

I've been really enjoying my new 32GB Apple iPad. Here's a quick run down of the iPad specific apps that I've installed so far.
  • 12 Solitaire Games from Astraware
  • ABC Player (Free)
  • AccuWeather Cirrus
  • Air Hockey (Free)
  • Apple iBooks (Free)
  • Apple Pages ($9.99)
  • BigOven Lite (Free)
  • Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List (Free)
  • EW's Must List (Free)
  • Flight Control HD ($4.99)
  • Harbor Master HD (Free)
  • IMDb Movies & TV (Free)
  • Marvel Comics (Free)
  • MotionX Zen HD (Free)
  • N.O.V.A - Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance HD ($9.99)
  • NPR for iPad (Free)
  • NYT Editor's Choice (Free)
  • PCalc Lite (Free)
  • Tap Tap Radiation (Free)
  • Twitterific for iPad (Free)
  • USA Today for iPad (Free)
  • The Wall Street Journal (Free w/ limited functionality)

Classic Saves You Some Green on Earth Day

MotionApp is going green for Earth Day! On their Facebook page, MotionApps writes:

"Gone green during time limited promo. You can get Classic for $19.99 as of now".

Classic is the webOS application that allows you to run all of your old Palm OS application on your Palm Pre or Pixi smartphone. Classic also allows you to HotSync with Palm Desktop running on your Windows PC using either a Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connection.

For more information, check out the MotionApps website...

Facebook App for webOS 1.2.0

The new Facebook client adds Facebook updates to webOS so you can receive Facebook notifications in the webOS notifications area. (See the image below to see what the notifications for Facebook looks like.)

I'm not the biggest Facebook user, but I did install the update yesterday and I think Facebook users (fanatics or not) will like the new feature. With this release of Facebook , I believe that the Palm webOS client is on par with the iPhone OS client in everyway. Way to go Palm!

If you have an earlier version of the webOS Facebook app, you can upgrade to version 1.2.0 using the Updates application. If you don't have the Facebook app installed on your Palm Pre or Pixi, you can get it today from the App Catalog.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Still Having iPad Wi-Fi Problems?

I've been using my iPad daily to connect to Wi-Fi hot spots at home, at the office, and around town. I did get bit by the Wi-Fi connectivity error that some people reported during the first week of the iPad's US availability, but I have not run into trouble since I rebooted my iPad. Anyone else still having trouble?

Sprint: BlackBerry Trade In Program Coming Soon

I was skimming the new Entertainment Weekly (issue 1099/1100 for April 23/30) and saw a Sprint add for the new BlackBerry Curve 8530 and the free trade in program.

I hopped on the Internet to check out the details on the Sprint Trade In website only to see a "coming soon" message.

According to the print ad, you can get a new BlackBerry Curve 8530 in black or royal purple for free when you trade in any BlackBerry device (must be deactivated already) and purchase a new 2-year service agreement. Customers who have the same device for 22 months are also eligible for the upgrade promotion. You may be required to pay a $36 dollar activation fee and the normal $200 early termination fee applies if you exit the plan early. The fine print also states that this is a mail-in rebate deal. You order the phone an get $100 off. Then you have to send in the MIR for the remaining $49.99. As usual, the rebate check will take 10 to 14 weeks and you will need to keep the phone active for 30 days.

The ad's fine print also goes on to state that the offer is good until 6/5/10 or while supplies last. I'm not sure what that means, as I don't expect Research In Motion or Sprint to stop selling the Curve 8530 on 6/5/10.

You can learn more about the Sprint edition BlackBerry Curve 8530 on the Sprint online store website.

Even with all the fine print and red tape, if you are looking to get an inexpensive BlackBerry, this is a great way to go. I had used the older Curve, the 8330, for a good 6 months an really liked it. If I wasn't using a Palm Pre, I'd likely be using the new Curve 8530 or a Tour 9630. (Yes, I'm an Apple fan, but I really like the physical keyboard on my devices.) Both the Curve and Tour have great battery life which is something that I really don't like about my Pre. If I forget to place it on my Touchstone charger nightly, the battery will be dead in the morning. Hmmm...maybe it's time to get a new Curve.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Sprint 4G Case for Apple iPad

I don't know if the folks over at Sprint are crazy or crazy like a fox. It looks like Sprint has a back door marketing campaign for Apple customers, like me, for their 4G network. The latest gimmick is Sprint's 4G Case of the iPad.

The good folks over at summed it up best by writing:
"How can you not love Sprint when it pulls stunts like this? Following up on its 4G iPhone commercial, the Now Network has absolutely outdone itself with the introduction of the Sprint 4G Case for iPad. That’s right… the Sprint 4G Case for the freakin’ iPad."
You can get more details on the Sprint website.


Monday, April 12, 2010

Palm Is Looking for a Buyer is citing three people close to the matter that Palm has retained the services of "Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Frank Quattrone’s Qatalyst Partners to find a buyer" for the company and is expecting bids as soon as this week. Palm has yet to officially announce that the company is up for sale.
"Palm, which helped pioneer the market for personal digital assistants, would offer suitors the WebOS software that competes against mobile operating systems from iPhone maker Apple Inc. and Google Inc. For Elevation Partners LP, the firm that owns about 30 percent of Palm, a sale would end the volatility associated with a stock that surged more than 10-fold since December 2008 before erasing most of the gain."

This development is expected and unexpected both at the same time. With Palm's fortunes completely reversing themselves from coming off the high that was the Sprint Palm Pre launch in June 2009, Palm is clearly in trouble. And the news that Palm is for sale is still shocking since company CEO Jon Rubinstein has stated they Palm, in conjunction with investment firm Elevation Partners, were going to go it a long and keep Palm an independent company.

Today's news, in my opinion, can be traced back to business decisions from the early 2000's when the company decided that they can make more money by selling the Palm OS to PalmSource; which later was acquired by ACCESS, Ltd; and choosing to focus on hardware.

Palm's webOS platform is a very robust and flexible operating system, however, the company continues to get beat down by the likes of Apple and Google with their iPhone OS and Android mobile operating systems.

I had originally intended to write an article this week discussion the challenges facing Palm with their webOS now that Apple has introduced multitasking in iPhone OS 4.0 due out by the end of the summer for iPhone and iPod touch and this fall for the iPad. There seems little point in writing that article.

I plan on reserving final judgement on Palm's future until Palm officially announces what their next move will be. If Bloomberg's sources are correct, we won't have to wait too long before we hear who might be acquiring Palm.

You can read the full Bloomberg article on the website.


Palm Looking For a Buyer

I just saw an article on Bloomberg that says Palm is looking for a buyer. I'll have more commentary on this development later this evening.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

iPad Battery Test: Final On Site Update

The Elite International Cheer & Dance meet is over and our Velocity cheerleading team took third place in their division! Way to go girls!

My iPad did a great job too! After using it for a good 3+ hours my battery is at 91% charge!

iPad Battery Test: Status Update

The meet is heading in to the awards portion of the show. I've been checking Facebook feeds, reading USA Today, and the NY Times with their iPad apps and checking some email in between each team. Wi-Fi has been on the entire time and my battery is now at 92%.

Great Job Girls!

Our Velocity cheerleading team did a great job and gave it there all! Way to go girls!

iPad battery status is now at 95%.

iPad Battery Test: Status Update

The meet is just getting underway. I have been using my iPad since I sat down non stop. My battery life is at 96%.

iPad Battery Test: Status Update

I was just talking two a few moms and dads about my iPad. Everyboby agrees that it is super cool. I was showing everyone the iBooks apps, movies and TV shows, my apps, and the App Store. Maps works great and I'm glad I got here early because I-95 northbound is getting busy.

My battery just dropped down to 98%.

iPad Battery Test: Facebook Friends Check

I just used my iPad to check the status of my friends on Facebook. My sister-in-law just ran her iPod through the wash! Ok, back to the iPhone OS 4 video. Oh, my battery is still at 100%.

Not My Kids

A gaggle of small girls just wasked by with some costumes that my kids would never wear out of the house. Not even if they are over 18.

Over protective Dad mode off.

iPad Battery Test: Video

I've started to watch the iPhone OS 4 video feed that I download earlier in at the week. Wi-Fi is on and screen brightness is at about 20% and it is still bright enough to see the screen.

iPad Battery Test

The location I'm at for the competition blocks Twitter (hey, it turns out the meet is at a high school). I'll have to post updates here on SPF.

I'm starting the day at 100% battery life.

iPad: A Real Life Test

This morning my girls, wife, and I are heading off to a cheerleading competition and my iPad will be coming along for the ride.

I plan on putting my iPad through a real life performance test. We'll be inside today, so sunlight won't be a problem as I reported yesterday at t-ball on my spf360 Twitter account.

I plan to have Wi-Fi on, if there is coverage, catching up on the day's news in the WSJ and NY Times Editor's Choice apps. Perhaps I'll play a few games of Firemint's Flight Control HD. Also on the agenda is reading some pages in iBooks and watching some TV shows.

So how well will the iPad's battery hold up? I'm not sure but we are going to find out together. I'll be posting updates on my spf360 Twitter account throughout the morning with battery status updates.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

One Week Later: iPad Jailbreak

Looks like George Hotz, aka GeoHot, has figured out a way to jailbreak Apple's latest gadget. The above screen shot shows an iPad with the blackra1n application and Cydia application managers loaded on an iPad running iPhone OS 3.2.

I think we all saw this coming, didn't we? You can get the dets over at the blog, On the iPhone.


Monday, April 5, 2010

Early iPad Owners Report Wi-Fi Problems

According to an AppleInsider post, early iPad users are reporting bugs with Wi-Fi connectivity on their new "magical" mobile device.

Sam Oliver writes for AppleInsider:
"Already there are a number of threads with dozens of posts about Wi-Fi connection issues, ranging from a weak signal to an inability to connect to a router. Issues have been reported with a variety of routers, including Apple's own AirPort Extreme.

In response to some issues, Apple has set up a support document for users who have problems getting their iPad to rejoin known Wi-Fi networks after a restart or waking from sleep. The issue is known to occur with some third-party Wi-Fi routers that are dual-band capable."
You can read the support document titled "iPad: Does not automatically rejoin Wi-Fi networks" on the Apple website.

I've experienced this problem with my iPad yesterday before I knew about this support document. I was able to workaround this issue by powering down my iPad and then rebooting it. I have not had the problem since.

Apple Holding iPhone OS 4 Sneak Peek Event

Following on the heals of a successful iPad Wi-Fi edition table roll out, Apple has notified the world will get their first look at iPhone OS 4.0 this week!

The event is scheduled for Thursday, April 8, at 1oam PT and will be held at Apple's Cupertino headquarters.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Apple iPad Unboxing Photos

I've had my iPad for about 9 hours now and I've been completely taken by this device. Bigger than an iPod touch, yet smaller than a MacBook, the iPad is my new "go everywhere" device that will serve up photos, email, web, games, video, and music while I'm on the go.

The following are some photos from my unboxing of a 32GB iPad and the Apple iPad Case.

Friday, April 2, 2010

iPad Tutorial Videos

With less than 24-hours to go before I can get my hands on my 32GB Wi-Fi edition iPad, my OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) for new business tools, has kicked into over drive.

Last night, people who follow my Twitter feed know I was downloading application for iPad from the iTunes Store. Today, I'm watching Apple's iPad tutorial videos.

Also, my print edition of Time Magazine arrived in the mail today. The cover features Steve Jobs and has a few stories on the long road to the iPad. Time's editor also announced that there will soon be a Time application for the iPad which will require a paid subscription. (I don't know if a paper subscription will be able to unlock/login to the electronic iPad edition yet.)