Keys-by-TEARN mobile platform
Diary of a passionate, tech Dad
from TEARN i.e. teach to learn


Feb 10, 2010

Palm WebOS for Pre and Pixi

The Palm brand still has 5% to 6% global share, but declining. The new WebOS platform enables rich application development using the same webkit as the iPhone. In fact, most of the development team came from Apple.

Strengths of Palm
  • Some loyalty among old-time Palm customers.
  • Distribution through existing relationships with global carriers.
  • Alternative to Apple for carriers concerned with global dominance of the iPhone. i.e. Verizon positions the Palm as an emotional favorite for women.
  • Use of Javascript, rather than the closed development platform from Next. (e.g. full Javascript support for accelerator - which is missing from iPhone platform.)
  • Innovates with both keypads and touch pads.
  • Simpler software development, submission process.
  • Simpler app store with weaker DRM.
  • App catalog is open, exportable.
  • High user demand, low software supply. (e.g. our first app netted 1,500 downloads on day one.)
Weakness of Palm
  • Dependent on investors for survival. Best developers are unlikely to work for Palm.
  • Smaller development team - slower to fix code problems. (e.g. Google Analytics fails on Palm sites.)
  • Not able to draw major content partners - like Youtube, publishers, broadcasters.
  • Less sophisticated portal for developers.
  • Terrible documentation - incomplete/incorrect.
  • Cost disadvantage - due to lower volumes.
Development Tools

Never got the emulator to work via the Eclipse software platform kit. However, the new Ares web platform dramatically simplifes coding, testing, and submission - particularly for HTML, CSS, and Javascript developers.

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