In an effort to reach a wider international audience, VisorCentral is going to start publishing more news from abroad. VisorCentral reader Patrick Boch, located in Heidelberg Germany, provides us with the following update.
c't (German computer magazine) reports that the product strategy of Handspring is pretty confusing in Germany: Apparently the Visor Neo is not planned for release in the German market and even as the Visor deluxe is "sold out" in the online store of Handspring Germany (and in most other online-retailers).
Furthermore, the Visor Platinum has been removed from the product portfolio as well. Having said that, it is unclear which (if one at all) low budget model Handspring will promote in Europe.
There are two exceptions, though. Aldi (food discounter in Germany) is now offering the Visor under the label of its own brand, Medion for 459 DM (about $210) and Tchibo (coffee retailer) will offer the Neo under the label of TCM starting from November 28 for as little as 400 DM (about $180).
The reason for Tchibo offering the Neo, although Handspring Germany does not plan to introduce that model to the German market, might be, as c't speculated, that Tchibo struck a deal with Handspring USA without the knowledge of the German subsidiary, to get a hold of the new Neo-model.
Also worth noting is that Handspring Germany opened a shop called "Handspring Center" on August 23, where you can buy and check out all Handspring products and related accessories/springboards.
Handspring CEO Donna Dubinsky touched on the subject of branded Visor models during the recennt analyst conference call. Who knows, maybe we will see a Star Bucks or Target Visor in the US soon?