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AnyDay the Palm way

Wed May 31, 2000 - 9:53 AM EDT - By James Hromadka

Palm announced today an agreement to purchase, an Internet-based calendaring solution, for about $80 million in cash and stock options. This will be Palm's first acquisition as an independent company. From the press release:
Palm will leverage its expertise in mobile- and wireless-based personal-information management with the exploding capabilities of the wireless Internet and wireless access. Palm also will develop a mobile portal of personal services with time- and location-based services at the core. These services will be available to Palm and Palm OS® users -- wireline or wirelessly, handheld or phone - and will build on the foundation of Palm's heritage of simplifying people's lives.

``Imagine having an active, dynamic calendar comprised of specific content you choose,'' said Barry Cottle, chief operating officer, Palm's Content and Access Business Unit, to whom Watts and AnyDay employees will report. ``Think how much more productive you will be when your calendar automatically populates itself with the right information, makes arrangements on your behalf and keeps you posted when changes occur.''

Cottle painted these pictures:
  • You already can choose your flights from a Palm handheld, but imagine that this information is automatically incorporated into your calendar, that your handheld alerts you of flight delays, and that once you arrive, you automatically receive local and timely information of interest. You get directions to your hotel, tips on the best restaurants, information on local entertainment and sporting events and easily make reservations for them all at the tap of a stylus.
  • Or perhaps you're a fan of Limp Bizkit, the Dave Mathews Band or Carlos Santana. Because you've signed up for notifications, your Palm handheld tells you that your favorite musicians are about to release a new CD and that you can receive it before it goes on sale at retail. Or, you see that a new tour schedule has just been released, and you can secure and pay for premium seats.
  • Suppose you're a member of a soccer dads and moms' carpool. If one driver finds he or she can't drive as scheduled, a quick poll of other drivers -- via their dynamic calendars -- can be taken and new assignments made without ever making a phone call. The same efficiency can be applied to busy executives; a dynamic calendar can identify potential matches for a meeting among a half-dozen attendees.
Businesses already can enhance employee productivity with AnyDay software, which synchronizes with the most popular enterprise calendar packages including Outlook, Lotus Organizer, ACT and GoldMine, as well as Palm and Windows CE handhelds.

``The services and applications possible from this pairing are stunning and inspiring,'' said Andrew Seybold, editor in chief of Andrew Seybold's Outlook, based in Boulder Creek, Calif. ``Palm has significantly advanced its vision with the acquisition of AnyDay. The time- and location-based view of the wireless world that Palm gives you will be one of the best ways to use the Internet.
``Allowing handheld users real-time and wireless access to dynamic Internet-based calendars will enable an abundance of time-saving applications. From secure schedule-sharing to event notification, the value of handhelds will rise substantially for consumers and businesses,'' continued Seybold.
I look forward to the day when I can dump Outlook, as the calendar is the only thing keeping me with it. Web calendars are a good start towards that.


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