CES: Palm, Microsoft team on smart phone

At the 2006 International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas this week, Palm announced its first handheld device that runs on a Microsoft Windows-based operating system instead of Palm OS, the company’s proprietary operating system.

Palm teamed with Microsoft to make the Treo 700w smart phone, and Microsoft allowed the company to add enhancements to the Windows Mobile 5.0 operating system.

Examples of those enhancements include several call management features and an improved Today screen that allows you to dial a phone call by typing in the person's name and search the Web without leaving the main view.

Palm also teamed with Verizon Wireless to provide wireless service, and the new device is the first Treo smart phone to use Verizon Wireless’ BroadbandAccess service on its Evolution Data Optimized network. The resulting download speeds are comparable with desktop PC speeds, which is a major improvement for handheld devices.

The device builds on the physical design of its predecessor, the Treo 650, but with several new features such as right and left action keys and new Start and OK buttons.

The Treo 700w also features 128M of memory with 60M available to the user, a 1.3 megapixel camera, integrated Bluetooth 1.2 wireless and a removable lithium-ion battery.

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