Palm needs Android? Do fish need water?

Palm has been struggling to make a dent in the mobile market lately. Working with Google might help.

Fortune makes the suggestion that Palm should focus on Google's Android mobile operating platform, and then ZDNet follows with a question, "Should Palm drop their Linux plans and embrace Android?"

The answer is "Yes." An emphatic "Yes."

Fortune writes:

...[I]t may be time for a drastic change of strategy. If Android is all it's cracked up to be, Palm may be better off scrapping its OS plans, and throwing in with Google instead....

Certainly, Palm would be taking a risk by betting on Android. Any embrace of Google would bring the wrath of Microsoft, which could make it more difficult for Palm to produce its most profitable handsets, its Windows Mobile-based Treos.

It really doesn't matter if Android is "all it's cracked up to be." It also doesn't matter if Microsoft doesn't like it. Palm isn't exactly thriving with Microsoft's Windows Mobile platform ( nor is Microsoft , for that matter). Palm is a walking corpse and needs to associate with living, breathing human beings again.

Android lets Palm bet big on the future. Windows Mobile is a bet on an operating system that has failed to make much of a dent on the market in its 10 years of struggling to do so. Palm was right to bet on Linux two years ago, but it has done little with the strategy. It's time to try its luck with Google. Android is no panacea, but it's better than popping Advil while its arms, legs, and neck get amputated by the market.

Tech Culture
About the author

    Matt Asay is chief operating officer at Canonical, the company behind the Ubuntu Linux operating system. Prior to Canonical, Matt was general manager of the Americas division and vice president of business development at Alfresco, an open-source applications company. Matt brings a decade of in-the-trenches open-source business and legal experience to The Open Road, with an emphasis on emerging open-source business strategies and opportunities. He is a member of the CNET Blog Network and is not an employee of CNET. You can follow Matt on Twitter @mjasay.


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