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Handspring's Treo Hits the Market

Techstination feature for Wednesday, February 13, 2002

Handspring's Treo hits the market. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. There have been devices that have combined the functions of a cell phone with a Palm handheld computer before, but the Treo from Handspring takes the merger to a whole new level. And after months of waiting... the device is finally available from two wireless carriers, Cingular and VoiceStream. Handspring VP Joe Sipher...

"The demand has actually put some strain on our Web site. So it's been amazing."

On the day Handspring announced availability this week... the company's stock shot up more than 33 percent. Unlike the hybrid devices from Kyocera and Samsung, the Treo is truly pocket sized. And it is available either with a small built in keyboard, like a RIM Blackberry... or with a Palm Graffiti screen. I found the keyboard simple to get used to. Another big advantage... wireless messaging capability that will get even better through an upgrade this summer. Until then, owners will have to set up a dial up Internet account to access email and the Web from the device...

"Any units that you buy today will be upgradeable to this new technology called GPRS also called two and a half G and that will provide a little bit faster data as well as faster connect times and you won't have to use a dial up account."

A color screen version of the Treo is due out this summer as well. It is expected to sell for about 599 dollars... .200 more than models available now. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.