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Palm Unveils the Foleo

Techstination feature for Friday, June 1, 2007

Palm unveils the Foleo. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. He is the architect of the Palm Pilot and then the Treo. Now Palm founder Jeff Hawkins has come up with the Palm Foleo. The company calls it a smartphone companion…..and Hawkins tells us….

"Foleo is actually not just a new product for Palm, but it's also a whole new product category and we're calling it a mobile companion. It's the first product that's actually designed to be a companion to the smartphone, like the Treo or the RIM Blackberry and so on. And it provides a large screen and full size keyboard interface to your smartphone, essentially turns the smartphone into a complete personal computing solution."

The Foleo has built in WiFi and Bluetooth….a ten inch screen, a full keyboard, and turns on and off instantly. It's based on the Linux operating system…not Microsoft…but includes editors for Word, Excel and PowerPoint. It weighs 2 and half pounds. How is it different from the variety of ultra-mobile PCs coming to market?

"The Foleo is born and bred to basically mate up with a phone, understand phones, talk to the phone and it provides a seamless experience. It has a purpose. It's a plus, it's a benefit. The Ultra Mobile PCs, for example, are people just trying to make smaller PCs. And that's been shown over and over again not to be very desirable."

Hawkins calls the Foleo, which will arrive this summer for about 500 dollars, the most exciting product he's worked on. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.