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Ducker's Comdex Comments

Wed Nov 14, 2001 - 4:18 AM EST - By Michael Ducker

Day 3

I'm writing this at home now, the dream is over and I have to go back to school. It's been a very fun trip, and one that I hope to continue for years to come, as it evolves to who inthe world knows ;)... Today’s events were Bluetooth and that’s pretty much it... I went to the show early to go to an Internet centers to check my mail and VC etc... (Since my Thinmodem killed itself). I then went to see some other PDAs - The new iPaq renders so nicely... It’s so different of an experience on a Pocket PC than on a Palm, not necessarily better, but different.

I also saw the Samsung Palm OS phone, which appears to have a horrible screen since that the colors were all washed out. It did have a cool digitizer finish which was like a built-in write right - it had that texture. I was unhappy with the integration that the Samsung phone had - it appeared that the phone was totally separate, like two devices sharing the same screen. Also, I didn't see a way to hide the graffiti area when in normal Palm OS mode. The phone was very heavy, but the actual size was ok - I'd much rather have the Treo 270 though!

After that I moved into Widcomm's booth. They were demonstrating their BlueConnect springboard module. I thought it was ok, but ugly!. The RedM module I saw later in the day was much better, and I was able to talk to someone who knew about the product - that's the big problem at these trade shows. Even if a company is only showing three products, their PR people demonstrating don't always know the basic of questions!

Take Datecs's PP50 printer for the Visor - the guy behind the counter had no clue on features or anything advanced in the software or much stuff at all.

After doing some other videos and things (the Airprime SB300), we moved back into the Handspring press room to meet up with a guy from Roche. Roche is a giant medical device/supply company that has worldwide sales of 20 billion. He was talking to us about a new medical module for the Visor - currently still under development, and than off to FDA approval.

Looking back, the big event for me on the day was meeting up with RedM. RedM is a company that makes the backend for a Bluetooth network - management software, access points etc. The Blade Springboard module is one of their first devices - and it sure is awesome. Everyone has hyped Bluetooth, but the demo that I got was amazing. Bluetooth really is the future. See the Video for more info on that.

My last event for the day was Jeff Hawkin's keynote - I only saw up to 12:45 (so 3/4 of it) but I wasn't too impressed. He spent too much time looking at the history of these devices. I also was surprised that they demonstrated the 3 way calling in the Treo - it's the same software as the VisorPhone has for that feature. I think a more appropriate demo would be of the speaker phone or something like that. Funny thing though - Jeff's Treo number was displayed live on the screen, and somebody called Jeff's cell while he was giving a demo.

The big thing that shocked me was that Hawkins stated that because everyone was scared of Microsoft, and Microsoft is a software vender, Palm took the idea that they would just make really great hardware designs, and not really add features at all into the OS.

That's how we got the Palm V, but that ALSO explains why Palm and company is in so much trouble. Let's just say that I hope the spin-off goes well between the Hardware and the OS group, and I hope to see a kickass version of Palm 5 soon! :)

It's been a great time here at COMDEX, and I HOPE that someone out their enjoyed reading these 700 word essays... Next year I will actually have a media pass, and therefore will be able to be a bit more involved with VisorCentral. Let me also thank my parents for letting me go and taking me there, VisorCentral for letting me hang with them, and help them out. Rachel Wild for helping me get in even though I'm under age and everyone that let us interview them, and everyone who watched those interviews. Everyone have a great week - I'll see you on the boards.


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