Palm Takes Wraps Off Three New Handhelds


Palm Wednesday unveiled two new Tungsten handhelds for business users, as well as a new Zire 21 handheld for consumers.

The Tungsten T3 is the top of the line, with 64 Mbytes of RAM, high-resolution color in both landscape and portrait mode, and a 50 percent larger screen display, among other features, including new personal information management (PIM) features.

Among the PIM enhancements is a new agenda view that shows future appointments and daily tasks, with the option of color-coding calendar appointments. The handheld also has more room for contact information, such as multiple contact addresses, phone numbers, e-mail addresses, instant messaging ID and Web site addresses, as well as built-in business applications such as Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint, the company said. Built-in multimedia applications such as the RealOne Mobile Player by Real Networks, Palm Photos and a Voice Memo Recorder for MP3 files are also now available.

In addition, T3 has a faster Bluetooth setup embedded in the handheld, a wireless communications suite and a fast Xscale processor. The Tunsgten 3 is available now for $399.

New Java capabilities licensed from IBM will appeal to developers, said Anthony Armenta, senior product manager at Palm, Milpitas, Calif. Palm Solutions Group has licensed a Java Virtual Machine, available for free download and designed for the Tungsten handhelds, he said.

"This gives the more than $3 million Java programmers out there the ability to write applications for our handhelds without having to learn the Palm software environment," Armenta said.

The new Tungsten E is a lower-cost handheld that also includes the PIM enhancements and 32 Mbytes of RAM, as well as a high-resolution color display, updated core applications, multimedia software and improved five-way navigator for one-handed navigation. Priced at $199, the Tungsten E does not have the landscape capability for viewing or the larger screen display.

The new Zire 21 handheld for consumers costs $99 and has four times the storage capacity of the original Zire handheld, with 8 Mbytes of memory. It also features faster access to information with a new 126MHz Texas Instruments OMAP processor, and the newest versions of Date Book, Address Book, Note Pad and To Do List with the latest Palm OS(R) software--Version 5.2.1, the company said.

MARIE LINGBLOM contributed to this story.