Where in the world has Palm been these days? Oh yeah, busy releasing the Palm Treo Pro that virtually nobody seems to care much about. Perhaps Palm didn’t try too hard to get the Treo Pro Carrier subsidized because they were working on something else… like making a new Linux based Operating System.
ACCESS – the company that purchased PalmSource (and thus the PalmOS) – has announced ALP 3.0 which stands for ACCESS Linux Platform 3.0. It supports native Linux and get this… is LiMo Foundation compatible. If you’re not familiar with LiMo, the company has goals incredibly similar to Android & the OHA and many of the members overlap. A couple months ago, we wrote an article explaining more about Android vs. LiMo Foundation.
The Android vs. LiMo conflict is an interesting one and certainly comes into play here, but we’ll let you folks tussle with that in the comments. What’s interesting here is that PALM has become more and more irrelevant in the past couple years and were facing the verge of endangerment if not extinction if they didn’t get their act together quickly.
Today, more than ever before, the mobile landscape and technology is growing, improving and moving at lightning speeds. The Apple iPhone has stormed onto the seem and taken a HUGE chunk of the smartphone pie and Android is threatening to do the same. The folks who these pie pieces are getting taken FROM, including PALM, are re-evaluating their position and now clawing to regain any sort of prominence.
Palm has a HUGE interest in making this new OS a success. In fact, it HAS to succeed or the company could be in HUGE trouble. So will ALP succeed or fail? We’ll have to wait until some ALP based devices come out. The first of those devices will likely be less-than-full featured handsets and feature phones not considered “smart” since ALP 3.0 Mini is immediately available to manufacturers. The full ALP 3.0 Operating System has been officially announced, but is on a TBA availability basis.
UPDATE: BradC in the comments is 100% right and CrunchGear does a great job highlighting this issue with a quote direct from palm, “I know that you never come right out and say that this is Palm’s official new OS, but just to be clear, the new Access OS is not the same as the OS we are developing. The development of our next OS is being handled all internally, and we are on track to introduce products based on that OS in the first half of 2009.”