The smartphone world is buzzing with rumors of new smartphones from Palm and Apple. The iPhone is one of the most popular smartphones on the market and has helped AT&T win new customers to its mobile network.
Palm is looking to grab some of the iPhone’s thunder with its new Pre smartphone which will be a Sprint exclusive handset for the first six months of its availability. Palm officially confirmed that the launch date for the Pre is set for June 6. Supplies of the device are expected to be slim for launch day due to the high demand expected.
Verizon Wireless has announced that after the Sprint exclusive period is over, it will also be offering its customers the Pre. The announcement that the Pre would hit the much larger and more poplar Verizon Wireless network sent shares in Palm up 8.8% in trading reports Reuters.
Verizon isn’t specific on when it will be offering the Pre and only says that it will be in the next six months or so. In addition to the Pre, Verizon is also getting a second-generation Blackberry Storm handset and talking about new phones form Motorola running the Android OS.
Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said, "Over the next six months or so you will see devices like Palm Pre and a second generation Storm. You can expect to see us launch a steady stream of new devices from multiple vendors."
Word of the Pre coming to other networks after the shorter exclusive period that Sprint won is good news to many consumers and analysts. Reuters notes that analysts were worried that Palm was limiting the success of Pre by making the handset a Sprint exclusive. Sprint is hemorrhaging customers at a significant rate and has significantly less customers than Verizon and AT&T Wireless.
UBS analyst Maynard Um told Reuters that he expects to see other phones from Palm that run the Pre operating system. AT&T's CEO has also expressed interest in selling the Pre, but runs different network technology than Sprint.