Our Smartphone Stores.  Buy Accessories For Your... Blackberry Android Moto Q iPhone Centro Treo

Report from the NYC Treo Road Show

I just returned from the pa1mOne Road Show in NYC. It was a platform to showcase the Treo 600 to potential Enterprise and SMB buyers.

It is obvious that p1 is putting huge importance behind the Treo Family. pa1mOne’s President, Ed Colligan, was there, and I convinced him to grant me an impromptu interview:

PJA: Let’s talk straight for a moment, Ed. There have been marketing pix of the Treo 650 out on the web for months, and in the past week, at least 2 people have had Sprint reps let them use and photograph actual T650’s. The cat is out of the bag, so to speak… Handspring embraced the web community, and leveraged them to build a lot of pre-release buzz for the 600. Why is pa1mOne issuing all the ‘no comments’?

EC: Were not being cagey…we have a plan for release and marketing of the next-gen Treo…and the Treo family. We appreciate the fact that there’s a lot of interest built up already. However, we’re not going to be rushed by any news leaks on the web.

PJA: Sooooo…there will be a next-gen Treo? Will it be released before the end of the year?

EC: Absolutely! We will be making an announcement soon.

PJA: Help me to understand, then, why you are making such a marketing push for the Treo 600, if the next-gen Treo is almost here.

EC: I’m not sure I understand the question

PJA: OK…the T600 has been out for a full year. In that time, your various carriers have done their own ads for it, but the only p1 ads were in trade papers, and in airport terminals. As of last week, there were full-page ads in many national, ‘end-user’ magazines, like Newsweek. Why start pushing the T600 to the consumer market at this particular stage?

EC: Right. What you need to understand is that the Treo 600 is not going away. It is a great product, and will stay as an important part of our Treo Family.

PJA: Ah! So the stories of a multi-product Treo Family are fact, and not just marketing hype?

EC: Absolutely.

During the meeting proper, Ed told us that this quarter, the Treo will be responsible for 50% of p1’s revenue…WOW! He also showed us graphs illustrating that 75% of Treo sales are into the Enterprise, via various carriers working with clients’ IT Departments.  One of the most interesting stats was: over the next 12 months, in North America, 49% of Enterprise and 68% of SMB companies plans some wireless deployment.

Next up, was Rob Haitani: p1’s master Product Architect. Rob has designed the UI for almost every major Palm device, going back to the original Pilot.

Rob was an engaging speaker, with a lot of passion for his job. He was asked why pa1mOne didn’t seem to listen to their users, before designing new devices, as evidenced by the lack of enthusiasm for the new T5. He said that p1 does listen to the end user community. However, p1 isn’t trying to bring the latest tech to market, or to compete with RIM or MS. Instead, they are focusing on specific solutions, that they have identified the need for; and are trying to get the best possible solution out the door, with a minimum of complicating factors. Sometimes, that requires that they follow their own judgment…even if it doesn’t agree with some end users.

He was followed by Joe Fabris: p1’s Director of Wireless Marketing. Joe did a nice run through of the T600’s native functionality, and introduced 8 different partners. Unfortunately, almost all of them were there to hawk eMail solutions. There needed to be a greater variety of apps.

HOWEVER, he did mention something very interesting:
VersaMail is being improved to add IMAP, and will soon work with every p1 line: Treo, Tungsten & Zire. This is good news.

Afterwards, I had the chance to question both men…

PJA: Rob, Why no OS v6x on the T5?

RH: PalmSource was not as far along with their OS libraries as we were when developing the T5, and next-gen Treo. In this case, our software was ready to go, and theirs wasn’t. We are working with them to get development in-synch, and OS v6 devices will be coming out later on

PJA: Rob, why are there only some features on this product, and that product? Why isn’t there some kind of unifying hierarchy?

RH: As I said before, with each device, we are trying to develop a specific solution, and deliberately avoid cramming each device full of every bell & whistle. AND…like I said before, both the Treo 600 and the T5 are ‘first versions’…you can look for more functionality on subsequent releases

PJA: Joe, Will the Treo 600 be upgrade-able to whatever OS the next-gen Treo has? What about the browser? I’ve heard that there will be a new p1 browser replacing Blazer…will those of us who invested in the T600 have access to these apps?

JF: The best I can tell you, is that we would like to do that, but there is no set answer as of yet.

PJA: What about the idea of p1 requiring sw partners to really support the latest OS? Many claim to, but don’t. As an example, VINDIGO. They charge an annual subscription fee, and claim to support OS v5.x. However, they don’t support 1-hand navigation, and you have to use the stylus. How will p1 address this?

JF: We have been trying to lean on them, but especially with the Treo, they resisted, as it was such a ‘new’ device, without a user base. Now, a year later, most developers are recognizing that they need to fully support our newest OS’s

PJA: One final question…You mentioned that p1 and Docs to Go have a long, strong relationship…much stronger then Handspring had with them. You hinted that we would see something good come of that relationship on p1 devices ‘very soon’. How does your new deal with Microsoft on Exchange support impact this? Will you be porting Pocket Office over to the Palm OS, eliminating the need for 3rd-party apps like Docs To Go?

JF: We have a long-standing partnership with Microsoft…after all, I’m running my Treo through a Microsoft Windows laptop right now, aren’t I? All we’re doing is licensing technology from Microsoft, so that the Treo can use Exchange Server. It won’t have any impact on our relationship with Docs To Go.

I don’t think I’m gonna be on his Christmas Card list!

Editor's Note: I would like to thank Peter Arts and Jonathan Greene for their fantastic reporting of palmOne's NYC Roadshow and for kindly contributing these on Treonauts.

Posted by Andrew on October 6, 2004 at 06:16 PM

Treo News

| Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Report from the NYC Treo Road Show:


The comments to this entry are closed.

Footer graphic
©2006 Treonauts.com | Subscribe to the Treonauts Blog RSS Feed


Treo Blog
Treo Forum
Treo Accessories Store
Treo Software Store


iPhone Blog
iPhone Accessories Guide
iPhone Accessories Store
iPhone Software Store


Centro Forum
Centro Accessories Guide
Centro Accessories Store
Centro Software Store