It all began with the PalmPilot 1000 and 5000, made by what was then 3Com's Palm Computing division. The PalmPilot debuted in 1996 with 128K of memory, a 16MHz DragonBall processor, the Palm OS 1.0, and a display with a resolution of 160 pixels by 160 pixels.
Palm shipped 1 million Palm Pilots within 18 months, but the "Pilot" moniker was eventually dropped from the device's name for legal reasons after complaints from the Pilot pen company.
The Palm m505 came with a color screen, while the cheaper m500 was a monochrome device. Because Palm announced the m500 and m505 well before the devices were available, demand for older units slowed and made worse an existing inventory problem.