Palm scuttles the Foleo

Palm FoleoIn a posting on the company blog, Palm CEO Ed Colligan has divulged that the Foleo mobile companion will be canceled. This comes hot on the heels of our earlier reports of rumors that the Foleo could be facing production delays.

The reason given for the scrapping of the Foleo is so that Palm can focus on creating its next-generation software for smartphones rather than be bogged down developing two independent platforms.

Colligan wrote that "Our own evaluation and early market feedback were telling us that we still have a number of improvements to make Foleo a world-class product, and we can not afford to make those improvements on a platform that is not central to our core focus."

Excerpt from the official Palm blog:

In the course of the past several months, it has become clear that the right path for Palm is to offer a single, consistent user experience around this new platform design and a single focus for our platform development efforts. To that end, and after careful deliberation, I have decided to cancel the Foleo mobile companion product in its current configuration and focus all of our energies on delivering our next generation platform and the first smartphones that will bring this platform to market.

Analysts in general agree with Palm's decision. Jack E. Gold, analyst for J. Gold Associates told InformationWeek. "I was surprised that they canceled [the Foleo], but they never should have done it to begin with." With Palm's relatively limited resources in comparison to its larger rivals as well as being already behind in updating its smartphone operating system, "The truth is they should have had it out a year ago. They're behind the eight ball, and [competitors] are passing them by."

For end-users in general, it was more of a case of "Huh?" as noted by The New York Times. Apparently, some users have grown used to the idea of the Foleo and are even looking forward to it being launched.

Elsewhere, the responses around the Net were swift. Instead of belaboring the same points, you can read more about them for yourself:

Palm will be taking a limited charge of below $10 million dollars for this decision.

Still, the tragedy of the Foleo perhaps has more to do with its great industrial design. Also, some in the Linux community were probably eagerly awaiting the release of a light portable machine running Linux.

Were you looking forward to the Foleo?