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PalmSource posts loss before acquisition

Loss is the result of a drop in the number of Palm OS licenses and increased competition from Microsoft.

Handheld software maker PalmSource, which recently agreed to be acquired by Japan's Access, reported a larger-than-expected net loss of nearly $2 million, or 12 cents per share, for its fiscal first quarter. Last year at this time, the company lost $165,000, or 1 cent per share. Excluding certain items, the company said it earned 1 cent per share.

The loss reflects a drop in the number of Palm OS licenses brought on by the acquisition and increased competition from Microsoft. PalmSource said about 1.2 million units shipped with the operating system in the last three months compared with 1.4 million 12 months ago. The Palm OS is finding its way into more smart phones, the company said. About 44 percent of units shipped in the quarter were wireless handhelds compared with 21 percent this time last year. Traditional handhelds now make up 56 percent of PalmSource's business, the company said.