3Com's Palm handheld gaat draadloos:
3Com expects to ship $800 handheld unit in late 1999, stocked with online services and software. 3Com's Palm Computing division on Wednesday unwrapped the Palm VII, a handheld unit that includes wireless capabilities to let users exchange e-mail and download information from selected Internet sites. The device follows the same familiar form factor as existing Palm units, adding a wireless modem and a short folding aerial on the side that also acts as an "on" switch. Company executives at a launch event described the Palm VII as a "revolutionary" leap forward over existing Palm products.
"This is a very important day for us," said Janice Roberts, senior vice president with 3Com. "We are going to change the way people access and use the Internet forever." 3Com expects to release the Palm VII in the United States in late 1999 after field trials, which are scheduled to start early next year. Its $800 price tag makes it twice as expensive as the current Palm III. The company has teamed with the wireless division of telecommunications provider Bell South to offer a bundled Internet access service starting at less than $10 per month, said Joe Sipher, director of wireless products at 3Com. The service will be available in 260 of the most highly populated areas in the United States, he said. One analyst was impressed by a demonstration of the unit's wireless capabilities, and said he would "snap one up in a minute."