A Palm licensee for, Garmin announced Wednesday that it would begin selling a Palm OS 5-based handheld in the second quarter of 2003. The iQue 3600, which will sell for $589, will come with navigation software and a built-in global positioning system antenna allowing consumers to locate and map their position and navigate to addresses or points of interest.
The device also comes with an MP3 player, voice recorder and a color screen with a resolution of 320-by-480 pixels that can display more than 60,000 colors. The iQue 3600 will come with 32MB of memory, a Secure Digital slot and a Motorola DragonBall MXL ARM 9 processor. The clock speed of the processor is still being determined, according the company, which demonstrated a prototype at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Garmin is also looking to license its navigation software to other Palm OS licensees in the coming months to help grow the market for handhelds and GPS devices, said Jon Cassat, the director of marketing communications at Garmin.
Cassat said the company could have gone with any other operating system but the large community of developers was especially appealing. Garmin is set to make a software developer kit available to Palm developers but has not set a release date.
Including Garmin, PalmSource, a subsidiary of handheld maker Palm and developer of the OS, there are 14 licensees of the Palm OS. Handheld OS rival Microsoft has about 30 licensees of its handheld operating system, Pocket PC 2002.
At the Consumer Electronics Show,
the theme is tech anywhere, anytime.
The Palm OS holds thein handheld market share but the Pocket PC OS is gaining momentum as manufacturers recently have been the price of their devices.
As PalmSource approaches a spinoff in the first half of the year, it has been signing new licensees, most recently Korea'sand China's .
Palm received word Monday from the Internal Revenue Service that the federal government will not tax a distribution of PalmSource shares to Palm investors. The companies expect to complete the spinoff in the first half of 2003, pending approval from the Palm board of directors and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.