Palm demonstrated the next release of PalmOS yesterday at the opening of its developers' conference in California.
Version 4.0 is expected to support 16bit colour, Bluetooth wireless local area networks and the universal serial bus standard. Palm said it will also incorporate voice telephony into the next release.
The company also showed off a range of wireless modems and PalmOS-based handhelds with integrated wireless connectivity that will support most of the world's mobile phone networks, including GSM and general packet radio service.
Palm also detailed its forthcoming MyPalm portal, which was first outlined at Comdex last month. The product, which is expected to be released in beta to US developers later this month, can be tailored to provide links to email, downloads, Palm's online shop, web clipping, and calendar and wireless synchronisation with a user's databank via Palm's servers. It will appear in Europe next year.
Communication is also expected to be a significant feature in subsequent versions of PalmOS, and in 2001 the company will incorporate functions such as email message notification, instant messaging and access to Microsoft Exchange. It also expects to add voice telephony to the platform.
Also at the Palmsource event, which was attended by 3000 Palm software developers, Sun Microsystems unveiled its Java 2 Platform Micro Edition and the Mobile Information Device profile for PalmOS.
The software will enable Java developers to create applications for the Palm environment. Sun will also work with Palm to define a programming interface specification targeted at personal digital assistants.
Meanwhile, Samsung announced that it has licensed PalmOS to use in its line of smart phones. The device, which is only expected to be available in the US, will ship in the second quarter of next year.
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