Palm is abandoning Windows Mobile to concentrate their resources on their new webOS platform as currently found on the Palm Pre and Palm Pixi.
As former Palm users (I had a Treo 600 at the time), we still remember Bill Gates and Ed Colligan taking the stage together at CES and showing off the first-ever Windows Mobile Treo 700. (Talk about cats and dogs living together!) Picture speed dialing on the today screen was an immediate sign that Palm was working their "secret sauce" (TM, TreoCast) magic to customize WinMo and give Palm users as much Zen as they could. It was equally evident when the razzle dazzle ended that Palm's own PalmOS was reaching the end of its useful life and with Cobalt vaporizing, Palm needed something to pin their immediate future on.
A couple years and one long walk in the desert (TM, TreoCast) later, and now webOS is a fresh new take on the smartphone space, and Windows Mobile is the OS in danger of being left behind. Add to that Palm's limited resources, and the focus makes sense. It's also gutsy, going all-in on webOS, and Palm needs to be gutsy at this point. No better way to make people believe in your future than believing in it yourself.
In the video embedded above, which we're offering now in tribute, we argued the Palm Treo Pro was neither a Palm, a Treo, nor particularly Pro (it was an HTC running WinMo with a tiny keyboard). Now maybe they're a Palm with some new Apple blood and still stuck in tiny keyboard land, but give them a year or so of distance and pure webOS differentiation, and we're excited to see where they go.
We sympathize with Windows Mobile Treo fans, but cheers Palm. Now bring the competition, Apple needs it, and Apple's customers will benefit from it in the long run.
Check out PreCentral.net and WMExperts.com for ongoing coverage.