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PalmSource CEO David Nagel Ready for Competition

Techstination feature for Wednesday, November 5, 2003

Tougher competition for the Palm operating system. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. Palm... the company... has now officially split in two. PalmOne is the company that makes handheld devices... .while PalmSource makes and sells the Palm operating system. It's customers include PalmOne, Sony, Kyocera, Samsung and others. But the Microsoft PocketPC operating system has been winning customers away... and is even beating Palm in Europe. PalmSource CEO David Nagel...

"We're not particularly concerned at this point about European data. Obviously it is a competitive market and there's more than one platform in it. It's probably good for consumers because we tend to drive one another competitively."

While handheld sales overall have been lackluster... devices that combine cell phones with PDAs have been growing. In that space, PalmSource faces competition from Microsoft's SmartPhone software. Nagel says there's room enough for everyone..

"The total market for handheld computers, depending on who you believe market research wise, is somewhere between 10 and 15 million units a year. Not a small market, but it pales in comparison to the total size of the handset industry, the cell phone industry which is more like 450 million units per year. Ultimately most of those phones, if not all of them will have an operating system and will be so called smart phones."

That, he says may take 5 or 10 years. In addition to phones, Nagel says the Palm operating system should find its way into all kinds of new consumer electronic devices. Bloomberg BootCamp, I'm Fred Fishkin.