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8/24/2007
10:34 AM
Eric Ogren
Eric Ogren
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Blog Blasts Palm, Palm Responds

The other day three writers at Engadget posted an open letter to Palm. The letter essentially blasted Palm's inability to produce a truly innovative product in the last few years and laid out steps Palm could take to regain its one-time innovative status. Palm CEO Ed Colligan responded with a blog post of his own.

The other day three writers at Engadget posted an open letter to Palm. The letter essentially blasted Palm's inability to produce a truly innovative product in the last few years and laid out steps Palm could take to regain its one-time innovative status. Palm CEO Ed Colligan responded with a blog post of his own.I agreed with many of the statements made by Engadget in its open letter regarding Palm. Though they lace the letter with their usual brand of snarkiness, the motive driving the letter is clearly their collective wish to see Palm really do well in the market. It starts off with this:

Man, what a crazy year, right? We know things haven't really been going your way lately, but we want you to know that we haven't given up on you, even though it might seem like the only smartphone anyone wants to talk about these days is the iPhone. It can be hard to remember right now, but you used to be a company we looked to for innovation. You guys got handhelds right when everyone else, including Apple, was struggling to figure it out. And it was the little things that made those early Palm Pilots great -- you could tell that someone had gone to a lot of trouble to think about what made for a great mobile experience, like how many (or rather, few) steps it took to perform common tasks.

The problem is that lately we haven't seen anything too impressive out of you guys. Sure, over the past few years the Treo has emerged as a cornerstone of the smartphone market, but you've let the platform stagnate while nearly everyone (especially Microsoft and HTC, Symbian and Nokia, RIM, and Apple) has steadily improved their offerings. So we've thrown together a few ideas for how Palm can get back in the game and (hopefully) come out with a phone that people can care about. (And we're not talking about the Centro/ Gandolf.)

From there, Engadget lists a number of specific points that lay out a plan of attack that Palm might follow toward success. Their suggestions cover a lot of ground, including tips to improve Palm's hardware, software, and overall platform.

After reading the letter, I was quietly curious as to what Palm might be thinking. Well, Palm CEO Ed Colligan had this to say in response:

Thank you for the very thoughtful post about Palm. I really appreciate the fact that you guys and others care enough to take the time to write such a comprehensive list of actions. I forwarded it to our entire executive staff and many others at Palm have read it. Although I can't say I agree with every point, many are right on. We are attacking almost every challenge you noted, so stay tuned. Let's remember that it is very early in the evolution of the smartphone and there is enormous opportunity for us to innovate. We have only just begun to fight!

Thank you for taking the time to write. I really do take your comments to heart and I know the team at Palm is totally committed to delivering the best mobile computing solutions in the world.

I was glad to read Colligan's letter. I can only hope that Palm really does take some of Engadget's advice to heart and be the great company we know they can be.

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