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Palm Pre Mojo SDK Released

Palm Makes Mojo SDK More Widely Available + Third-Party To Offer PalmOS Emulator For Pre!!! + Fandango & Pandora Demo Video


After teasing us yesterday, Palm announced its webOS Early Access Program for developers at the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco.  The Mojo SDK, previously available only to a select group of partners, will now be provided to a broader set of interested developers that apply for access at the Palm Developer Network website.  Initially, access to the program will be limited as the tools and systems continue to be refined and improved, with general availability scheduled for later this year.  Even more importantly, Palm announced its plans for integrating cloud services into the new platform and an application from MotionApps that will allow legacy Palm OS applications to run on webOS devices

Palm-Michael-Abbott“Developers are an incredibly important part of the webOS ecosystem, and we’re eager to get the SDK into their hands,” said Michael Abbott, senior vice president, Application Software and Services, Palm, Inc. “Now that the SDK will be available to a broader base of developers, we think the enthusiasm for webOS will only grow and accelerate. We’re very excited to work with developers to make this unique development environment even better.”

With Mojo, developers have the ability to integrate their applications into core webOS functionality, such as linked contacts, layered calendars, multitasking, notifications and GPS capabilities.  webOS applications run natively on the Palm Pre. They don’t depend on any server connection to run and can cache data locally. Providing developers with the freedom to integrate unique webOS functionality and services into their applications paves the way for a rich catalog of innovative offerings for webOS users.

Unique webOS Functionality Use: Fandango & Pandora
Palm webOS is a new kind of mobile platform. Standard web technologies, such as HTML, JavaScript and CSS, are deeply integrated into the webOS architecture, enabling a much broader developer community to easily create compelling applications.  The ability to customize webOS applications will appeal to developers and ultimately benefit consumers with a unique and differentiated user experience.

“webOS makes mobile application development incredibly easy – we were able to get a version of Pandora running in no time,” said Tom Conrad, chief technology officer, Pandora.  “And because webOS has true multitasking capabilities, Pandora runs elegantly in the background while you’re using other applications. The unobtrusive notification bar lets you know what’s currently playing, and allows you to pause and play without having to go back into the application. It’s an incredibly powerful and flexible platform.”

[As you can appreciate from the full video demo of Fandango & Pandora running on the Palm Pre below (I recommend you watch in full screen mode here or via YouTube) the webOS is an extremely fast, fun, rich and smooth platform that evidently allows developers to deliver superb applications.]


“The webOS functionality and integration opportunities provide a richer experience for moviegoers on the go,” said Ted Hong, chief marketing officer for Fandango. “With Fandango’s webOS application, you can watch trailers and buy tickets, pick your showtime, which is automatically added to your calendar, then get directions to the theatre, and easily forward the showtime to friends or family. You can even create a reminder to let you know when a specific movie is opening so that you can buy tickets in advance on Fandango. The webOS technology helps further our goal of making moviegoing experience as convenient as possible.”

Integrated Cloud Services
Palm also announced that it would deploy its first Palm branded cloud service. Cloud services are software resources provided over the Internet. These services can deliver direct benefits to the end user, such as giving them access to their favorite web applications, or can be incorporated by developers into their applications to enhance the end-user experience.

When the Mojo SDK is broadly released later this year, it will include a developer-facing offering called the Mojo Messaging Service, an XMPP publish/subscribe service. The Mojo Messaging Service is an elegant, standards-based way to exchange information over the Internet.  When new information is available, it is “published” to the cloud and all interested parties who are subscribers are notified that new information is available. This will allow developers to push live content to their applications or services. The Mojo Messaging Service initially will have a limited feature set and service level that will evolve over time.

Palm OS Emulator Application
Palm also announced that MotionApps is creating an emulator application that will allow most Palm OS applications to run on webOS devices. The application, called “Classic,” will be available for purchase when the Palm Pre phone becomes available from Sprint in the first half of 2009, and gives users peace of mind as they transition to Palm’s new webOS.


Since Palm OS applications running in Classic won’t be able to leverage core webOS functionality, Palm is working with partners to ensure that popular Palm OS applications are made available on the webOS platform and are optimized to take advantage of everything it has to offer.

In the meantime, the MotionApps Classic application will allow customers who have invested in the Palm OS platform to use Palm OS applications they’ve grown to love and depend upon on their new webOS devices.  Additionally, MotionApps notes that “compared to the Treo 700p for example, your existing PalmOS apps will run approximately twice as fast with Classic” on the Palm Pre.

I’m delighted to see that Palm is slowly making more information about the Pre available and I have to admit that every day that goes by now makes me want to have one in my hands even more…  On this front, although the Palm Pre Release Date remains a closely guarded secret, I am getting credible information to suggest that the launch window may be between 15 May and 15 June.  The sooner the better!

Preonauts are anxiously waiting for their beloved

Posted by Andrew on April 2, 2009 at 11:46 AM

Palm Pre

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by Ned | Apr 2, 2009 2:55:43 PM

Still no direct computer syncing means so long Palm, hello iPhone.

Other problems with the phone (lack of memory, Sprint, etc.) are minor, though not unimportant, but definitely insignificant, compared to no direct computer syncing which makes Pre a total non-starter.

by mike | Apr 2, 2009 3:45:47 PM


what do you mean no direct computer syncing.

how are you suppose to sync the pre?

by Ned | Apr 2, 2009 6:05:37 PM

You have to sync the Pre via the internet. If you want to sync from your computer's Outlook calendar and contacts you can only do it via Exchange ActiveSync only, which requires Microsoft Outlook using Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 with SP2 or Exchange Server 2007. So if you're just an individual user of Outlook, or your company is small and doesn't use it's own Exchange Server, you're out of luck syncing your Outlook calendar and contacts to the Pre.

This is cloud or internet computing with the Pre. This isn't the way it's been done in the past with your own computer.

So far, I for one can't tell if it actually stores one's calendar and contacts in the Pre, or if you have to be connected to the Internet to have your calendar.

What the Pre really does is pull your calendar dates from your Google, and Facebook calendars together for one logical view of your day. The same is true of your contacts. And if you have the same contacts in different places, Pre can link them together, making it easy to find the information you need.

Everything is on the 'net for the Pre.

It's why every business person I know is not interested in the Pre at this time. They would be very interested if a third party were to create software to sync one's computer, preferably via the Palm desktop to the Pre, but since none of us can tell if the calendar and contacts are even stored on the Pre, I don't know if that's possible.

The reason for our insistence on direct computer syncing is privacy and confidentiality. I have no intention of opening up my personal and business information to the non-privacy of the 'net, where break-ins happen every day and where data mining goes on constantly. Moreover, I don't trust the ability of companies like Google and Facebook to keep my info confidential. I want more control of my data than the Internet can give me, and I don't want to depend on the Internet being available to me to see my own information.

What happens when I travel to Europe, or anywhere out of the country and need to sync or even see my data. Have you seen how much it costs for you to take your US based device and get data service when in Europe of Asia. It is a significant cost.

So that's the gist of my statement and my belief that this time next year I'll have an iPhone instead of a Pre or any Palm phone.

by neo | Apr 2, 2009 8:20:42 PM

Personally, I had no plans to sync to my desktop since all my data is in the cloud. I use gmail for all my email and contacts so having that information on my phone is great!

I suppose privacy is an issue to a degree but someone could always steal your laptop or personal computer just the same. Not to mention break into your bank's database, credit card account, etc.

If you're not comfortable with your data in the cloud then you should not own a credit card either.

You must not resist the cloud or you and your business will go the way of the dino....

I'm guessing based on your description that your post that you're older than 50?

by Ned | Apr 2, 2009 8:40:36 PM

I do lot's of stuff online, but I have confidential information in my Treo such as passwords and codes for my clients. There is no way that's going in the clouds.

As to my email and my personal computer. At my company we don't allow confidential information on any laptop. For one thing, under the Customs and Border Patrol random inspection program when returning to the US your computer is subject to inspection and confiscation for more detailed inspection. As a result, we connect to our office network through VPN and run all programs such as email, and have access to confidential information solely on an as needed basis through the VPN connection. In that way there is no data whatsoever on our laptops.

As to the banks, their break-ins have been caused mostly by bad policy than anything else. Their security is far in excess of Google and Facebook.

Moreover, if the Pre doesn't actually store your calendar and contacts in the unit, then what do you do when you can't get access, and how much are you willing to pay for data services when you travel outside the country.

And yes I'm over 50, but I also break into computers for part of my living and know how fragile security really is.

When they make the cloud safer and much more reliable, I'm willing to make use of it. But at this point, I'm not.

by Khurram Khan | Apr 2, 2009 9:58:58 PM

Definately this phone is a step up for palm, and lot of small things hopefully will be worked out soon. Just like i-phone worked out multimedia messaging and copy cut paste though it took them few years. I am looking foward to it. Palm should not charge for palm classic as it will deter people from switching. Plus they should also build an emulator to show your phone screen on the PC, just like windows based phones let you do.

by cat dumas | Apr 3, 2009 6:18:03 AM

thank you for the classic os emulator. i feel much better about my 10 years collection of apps.

by Dave | Apr 3, 2009 9:47:16 AM

I am psyched that old apps should be able to run on this phone (have about $350 invested in 3rd party apps).

I am concerned about info as well, as I use my laptop (Palm Desktop) in the am to book appointments and then sync to phone so I have it as I go through my day.

I feel it would be a real disadv. if could not use laptop when using contacts/calendar/memos for several hours!


by mike | Apr 3, 2009 10:21:15 AM

I'm confused with the wireless syncing.

So is there a phonebook built into the phone or not?

by neo | Apr 3, 2009 11:11:37 AM


Wow, sounds like you're a secret agent. I suppose from a business standpoint it probably doesn't make sense to support desktop sync when 95% of the public is fine with OTA sync.

I can see your concerns about security, but when you're a 007 agent you need a 007 phone.

by Jack | Apr 3, 2009 11:39:53 AM


You can sync your contacts, calendar, and task OTA with the free service mail2web.com. I use if for my work supplied Treo 750, as well as my iPod Touch. It works great.

by Scott | Apr 3, 2009 1:29:13 PM


There is a 3rd party vendor working on desktop sync - Palm has simply stated that they won't be providing this software anymore (Sorry, Andrew, not sure if you posted that here or not):

by Dave | Apr 3, 2009 1:41:50 PM

Great, CompanionLink seems to take care of my concerns about syncing.

I hate that as my Centro phone app looks for a signal (in bad area) the rest of the smartphone apps are paralyzed until a signal is found or it 'realizes' it can't find a signal (can't even turn the phone off in this paralzyed state).

The Pre should not do this since apps can run at the same time, correct?

by Crud5000 | Apr 3, 2009 5:16:10 PM

@ Scott...
Wow thanks for the link about Syncing the Pre....

Well I guess that seals the deal, I'll just have to deal with not having a SD... bummer but I'll get over it.

by Sccott | Apr 3, 2009 8:12:03 PM


Yes, I'm still somewhat bummed about SD too. With Pre being so good with multimedia, it screams out for more storage. 8GB is on the low side - so Palm really needs to bump up the onboard storage or have removable SDIO.

With yesterday's announcement about support for classic PalmOS apps, they knocked out one of the 3 major items that was on my wishlist - more storage and a C based SDK are the others(A C-based SDK is needed so developers can develop games and high complexity apps, like this classic emulation app, that don't lend themselves to a HTML/Javascript rewrite).

All in all, I'm very excited. The Pre looks great and the ability to run classic apps is a major plus - it would have been hard to let go of some favorites until they have WebOS versions/replacements. More storage is a matter of time and I think Palm won't cede the gaming market to the Apple Iphone forever - they'd be crazy not to add a C SDK and I think they'll turn their attention to this once WebOS v1.0 and Mojo are released.

by q | Apr 5, 2009 11:37:33 AM

I think the problem started when they sold off their software division, later realizing that business model wasn't going to work, then making the decision to make there own software. Wiki it, its interesting what Palm went through to get here. I think ultimately they made some very bad business decisions. My personal opinion is they recognized their mistake and are trying to change, so this next go around with WebOS they will have my support, even if they go under six months later which I believe if fairly possible.

by greg | Apr 5, 2009 7:34:31 PM

I like many orgamise my life on a standalone copy of outlook, which I sunc with my phone by USB. I like it. I don't want to use google apps.
If the palm pre can't sync with it that is a deal breaker. Game over

by Jerry | Apr 6, 2009 2:33:49 PM

This looks perfect for me. Currently my work info is all on work's Exchange server and pushes directly to my Touch Pro. I would love a device that can still do that and yet will integrate my personal contacts and calendar from Google as well as events and other info from Facebook. I am not the most organized person so all this integration between the three tools I use most for professional and personal contacts/calendar/tasks is a godsend. The fact that it is on Sprint may not be god for some but for me it is like a bonus. To switch to another carrier would mean I would be paying between $5-35 more per month for unlimited 3G data. Since Sprint has excellent service here in the DC/Baltimore area at rates unmatched by any other major US carrier, I count myself lucky to be able to keep my current service. This is the first new device that doesn't require me to give up things I am used to having on my WM phones and adds some new hardware and functionality on top! I can't wait for the release and first month's reviews so I can be certain that it lives up to the demos.

by bobo | Apr 6, 2009 3:34:09 PM

No SD card
No sync to my desktop
Not Palm OS compatible

and no release date yet?

Android is looking better everyday

by Dingus | Apr 6, 2009 6:23:05 PM

I do miss the addition of an SD card but on my Touch Pro I never use more than my 4GB card so I think I will be OK with this. Most of the time I stream media rather than store it so I can overlook this one. 8GB should be decent enough for me since that will fit apps and a DVD-R worth of media just fine.

Sync to desktop I can also do without since these days the first thing I do with my info is sync it someplace else. Hard drives crash. Phones get lost. I like keeping things synced. Anyway, if I sync to Exchange, my desktop client will also be updated.

Palm OS...don't care. My Treo 650 was great back in the day but I moved past it and never looked back.

Android would be great if they had a decent device. I tried the G1 but the battery sucked. The GPS sucked. Couldn't sync email worth a damn. And the next Android device on the way is no better. They just got rid of the QWERTY which is a detriment IMO. So far Pre looks like the only decent option coming out this year with both the hardware and software.

by Crud5000 | Apr 6, 2009 11:44:44 PM

@ Greg, Bobo and Dingus
Look at Scott's post #12.
YES YOU WILL BE ABLE TO SYNCH TO THE PALM DESKTOP, as well as Outlook and other programs.
Also most Palm apps will work on the Pre via MotionApps Palm Classic program for the PRE.

So most everything that now works with the Palm Treo phones will also work and do what we need with 3rd party apps! =D

So for me the only thing was the SD storage, I will get over it and cope without.
Those First 2 things were a must and now they have been taken care of.

Woopy... now the long wait for GSM and Canada.. :-(

by dp | Apr 8, 2009 1:58:22 PM

There's some VERY intriguing speculation about the Pre's SDK here:


and here:


As a mobile application developer for the police/security (but apparently not the 007) markets, I assure you that we're watching this very, very closely, and with great interest....

by dp | Apr 8, 2009 2:10:22 PM

@crud5000: Bell Canada has already announced that they will be offering the Pre

by Crud5000 | Apr 8, 2009 6:33:40 PM

@ dp
Ya I heard that, Bell blaaaa!
RUN AWAY!!!!!!!!!!! :-(
I'll wait to get one unlocked. Maybe like how I got my 650 on Ebay.... sigh. Still will need to be GSM.

by greg | Apr 15, 2009 7:43:03 PM

Why should I need to pay for a third party solution to what I consider to be a core requirement of a smartphone (desktop sync). Palm not offering this just seems lazy, and with their current competitors they cannot afford to be lazy

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