Gibu Thomas, founder and CEO of Sharpcast, has a column about Palm (PALM) posted on VentureBeat. He writes that Palm’s best chance of survival is to sell to a bigger phone maker, and give up hope of becoming the next Apple (AAPL).
He makes a cogent argument, and doesn’t pull punches.
Chief among those competitors is Apple. Whether you like the touch-screen implementation on Apple’s iPhone or not (and it’s hard to judge either way without carrying one around for a few days), it’s the most innovative phone interface in a long time. Why? Apple’s multi-touch technology potentially makes the touch screen experience more flexible and responsive than the other phones on the market.
Even though it’s not immediately evident, the iPhone’s allure is more about software than hardware – and that’s another reason Palm is in trouble. While Apple readies the iPhone, Microsoft (MSFT) is testing out new cell phone interfaces through Deepfish and ZenZui, and Mozilla’s working the mobile browser side with Minimo (Windows Mobile only). Meanwhile, Palm’s hardware and software efforts have been mostly running in place technology-wise for the past couple of years; incremental improvements, but nothing to call home about.