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Handspring set to launch all-in-one handheld

Handspring set to launch all-in-one handheld

Handspring will announce on Monday a handheld device, dubbed Treo, that includes a cellular phone, Web browsing, and organizer functions, apparently outpacing fellow manufacturers of PDAs, according to a source.

Two Treo units will be available early next year with a color version available later in the year, the source said.

The units will use the Handspring Blazer browser, the Palm operating system, and have a built-in cellular phone, the source said.

One of the units will include a small keyboard similar to the one found on the Research in Motion (RIM) Blackberry units, and another model will use the Palm Graffiti handwriting recognition for text.

Information on the Handspring device's wireless e-mail capabilities was not available. The devices will be priced at about US$400.

Up until now, most of the devices that included all three features required cumbersome add-ons such as the sled device for the Pocket PC units or cables that attached the handheld to a cell phone as used by Palm.

The Handspring Visor also had a Springboard add-on that gave its units some cellular capability. There are also some phones from companies such as Samsung Electronics that have attempted converged devices. But the Treo units will have the look and feel of a small handheld.

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