When is good news terrible? When Palm
Weeks after telling analysts that it would not upgrade its Treo 650 smartphone to comply with European regulations for controlling pollution from electronic devices, the company struck a deal to sell a next-generation version of the Treo to European customers through Britain's VodafoneGroup
Investors greeted the news with the enthusiasm reserved for a wet dog trampling on new carpet. I'm hardly surprised. According to press reports, overseas sales of the 650 were picking up just before it was pulled from the shelves, thanks in no small part to promotions with telco providers Orange and O2. Now, rivals Motorola
I find it hard to forgive Palm, given that the pollution regulations that forced the 650 from shelves have been in the works since the 1990s. Commonly known as RoHS, the law requires that electronic devices take thorough measures to reduce toxicity. The law has teeth; in 2001, Sony
Frankly, I wonder whether the partnership with Motley Fool Inside Value pick Vodafone is too little, too late. I don't doubt that Palm will produce a great product; the plan calls for a Windows-enabled Treo that will take advantage of Vodafone's high-speed third generation (3G) mobile network. But big, well-financed competitors are earning customers right now. Don't be surprised if those customers refuse to switch to the new Treo when Palm's European vacation finally ends.
Related Foolishness is just a thumb-click away:
- Maybe a trip to Europe will help Palm boost earnings.
- Does the Treo offer enough to stiff-arm an iPhone?
- Maybe, but only if it avoids another convergence train wreck.
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Fool contributor Tim Beyers says he'll use his Treo 600 till it breaks. Tim owns shares of Nokia. You can find out which other stocks he owns by checking Tim's Fool profile . The Motley Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy .