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Palm introduces new handheld

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(IDG) -- Palm Inc. announced the release of a new model of its popular line of PDAs (personal digital assistants) Tuesday.

Called the M105, the new handheld is an incremental upgrade from the Palm M100 released late last year. The M105 is essentially the M100 with additional memory and pre-installed Internet connectivity software that the M100 lacked.

The M105, which comes in the same form factor as the M100 and offers the same removable faceplate system for customizing the device, sports 8M bytes of RAM (as opposed to the M100's 2M bytes), Palm OS 3.5, a backlit LCD display, the Palm Mobile Internet Kit which allows users to connect to the Internet using a cellphone, AOL (America Online) for Palm OS, a serial port docking cradle and more. Also included are standard Palm applications such as date book, address book, to do list and note pad. Not included are a USB (Universal Serial Bus) cradle or Macintosh-compatibility hardware. Each must be purchased separately.

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Palm also separately offers 19 detachable faceplates in colors such as ruby pearl, citrus, tangerine twist, arctic white, leopard, Pacific blue and bubblegum. The M105 comes standard in a gray case. Each faceplate costs $19.95.

The 6 ounce M105 costs $199 and is available immediately in North America. Worldwide availability is expected by mid-month.

This announcement comes among widespread Internet speculation that Palm competitor and licensee Handspring Inc. will also be announcing a new model soon. Rumored to be called the Visor Edge, listings for the as-yet-unannounced device were spotted on Staples.com and Sparco.com earlier this week but have since been removed.




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