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The Icon Bar: News and features: Psion Pull The Plug
 

Psion Pull The Plug

Posted by Alasdair Bailey on 13:59, 11/7/2001 | , , ,
 
UK palmtop manufacturer Psion has just announced that it intends to pull out of the personal computing market in order to save cash for other ventures. In future, Psion will concentrate their efforts on the business solutions company, Teklogix and spin-off operating system venture Symbian.

This means the end of Psion palmtops as we know them. The promised Bluetooth enabled Revo-like device will not now see the light of day.

See the BBC's coverage at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/ or Psion's own press release.
 

  Psion Pull The Plug
  (14:29 11/7/2001)
  Mr Jake Monkeyson (15:37 11/7/2001)
    Jeffrey Lee (16:45 11/7/2001)
      Rob Kendrick (21:19 11/7/2001)
        Rich Mackin (01:45 12/7/2001)
          Guy Inchbald (08:05 12/7/2001)
            Alasdair Bailey (10:42 12/7/2001)
              Alasdair (me again!) (10:46 12/7/2001)
                Richard Goodwin (11:11 12/7/2001)
                  Richard Goodwin (11:48 12/7/2001)
                    Guy Inchbald (16:25 12/7/2001)
                      Richard Goodwin (12:40 17/7/2001)
 
Richard Goodwin Message #88834, posted at 14:29, 11/7/2001
Unregistered user I guess this means that there'll be no future equivalents to the Acorn pocketbook (and whatever the RiscStation version was called). Bummer :(
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Mr Jake Monkeyson Message #88835, posted at 15:37, 11/7/2001, in reply to message #88834
Unregistered user I wonder what would have happened if RON was around...
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Jeffrey Lee Message #88836, posted at 16:45, 11/7/2001, in reply to message #88835
Unregistered user No psion = no palmtops = gap in market...

A RISC OS palmtop anyone? ;)

Alternatively someone else will fill the gap with psion-compatables
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Rob Kendrick Message #88837, posted at 21:19, 11/7/2001, in reply to message #88836
Unregistered user RiskStation's gizmo isn't manufactured by Psion, and so it isn't in that much danger. Psion have said nothing about killing of the OS business.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Rich Mackin Message #88838, posted at 01:45, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88837
Unregistered user Psion spun the OS off to Symbian, and development of that will no doubt continue - even if Psion pull out other manufacturers will fill the gap. Also RiscStation's palmtop is, I believe, a re-badged version of another manufacturer's machine (but I could be wrong)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Guy Inchbald Message #88839, posted at 08:05, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88838
Unregistered user I notice that Psion intend to peddle the NetBook in education markets.
And hopefully the 'high-end' consumer rump will include NetBook/Series 7 developments.
daaa - da do RON RON
remember those days?
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Alasdair Bailey Message #88840, posted at 10:42, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88839
Unregistered user The RiscStation palmtop is a rebadged Oregan Osaris. The Osaris is a machine using EPOC 5 (similar to that in the Series 5) from a couple of years back now. I'm not sure of the spec beyond that because our promised review loan never showed up at Shopper Labs.

I think we will continue to see machines which use EPOC or rather Symbian Platform as it's now called. However, they'll be phones and other embedded uses such as in the new Nokia 9210 communicator.

I can't imagine anyone else will start making Psion machines simply because they don't sell. It's a pity; they are still way better than PocketPC/Palm OS but just because they're a British IT firm, they're crap at selling themselves (humm, sounds familiar).

Cheers,
a
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Alasdair (me again!) Message #88841, posted at 10:46, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88840
Unregistered user Was it only me that noticed the widespread feeling of disappointment running through most reporting of this story in the general press?

I think a lot of journos such as myself love the machines because they're the only things with a keyboard. Try writing 2000 words using a stylus and handwriting recognition.

Cheers,
a
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #88842, posted at 11:11, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88841
Unregistered user It is a pain writing large amounts of text using an on-screen keyboard, but the only Psion that was in my price range was the Revo which had a really icky keyboard. Now that I've got a Palm V again I'm thinking about getting an external keyboard for it, but seeing as I only paid 55 UKP for the machine (second hand), and the keyboard is 60UKP+, it seems a waste - especially as the text editor you get with Palm OS has a 1.6K page limitation. My 'phone has a better text editor (it's based on Psion stuff), and a bigger on-screen keyboard, but it doesn't store HTML pages for reading offline like the Palm does (or clone all my remote controls, but that's another story :) Hence, I've got data all over the place, and it's not as easy to get it back to the RiscPC as with the Psions (until the R380 protocols are properly supported in PsiFS).

So the Psion isn't the only option, but it was a neat all-in-one solution that had a good following among techie journos. I doubt we'll see the likes of the Oregan and Ericsson (MC218) OEM versions if Psion themselves aren't making the hardware in the first place.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #88843, posted at 11:48, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88842
Unregistered user (sorry, 4K page limit on Palm OS memos - not sure where 1.6K came from, probably something WML-ey)
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Guy Inchbald Message #88844, posted at 16:25, 12/7/2001, in reply to message #88843
Unregistered user Alasdair said, "I can't imagine anyone else will start making Psion machines simply because they don't sell."

If the problem was more Psion than the product, maybe there's hope yet.

Richard wants a keyboard for his palm. What, one of those foldaway ones that flop round your knees when you haven't got a table handy? I often key stuff into my Series 5 one-handed, holding it with the other. Try that with a Palm keyboard.

There has to be a niche market here. It just needs a touch of realism about who we are, and a touch of acumen in producing what we want.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 
Richard Goodwin Message #88845, posted at 12:40, 17/7/2001, in reply to message #88844
Unregistered user There are about three or four makes of Palm keyboard, and only one is "floppy". Alas I can't remember which one got the best review for being the sturdy, non-bendy type.
  ^[ Log in to reply ]
 

The Icon Bar: News and features: Psion Pull The Plug