[NPL] Palm VII announced
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[NPL] Palm VII announced

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

3Com Announces the Palm VII Connected Organizer, The First Handheld
Solution for Out-of-the-box Wireless Internet Access

Revolutionary new product to give customers fast access to personal,
business and Internet information; 22 initial web content partners include
ABCNews.com, ESPN.com, E*TRADE, Mastercard, Visa, The Wall Street Journal
Interactive and Yahoo!

Santa Clara, Calif., December 2, 1998 -- Palm Computing, Inc., a 3Com
company (Nasdaq:COMS), today announced it is extending its line of Palm
Computing platform products to include the Palm VII connected organizer,
once again redefining the handheld computing industry. The Palm VII
organizer will enable users to quickly, easily and securely obtain
information from web and intranet sites via a wireless connection to the
Internet and will provide a means of instant two-way personal
communication. In addition to providing fast and simple access to personal
and business information, the Palm VII organizer will give people a
wireless means of quickly finding important Internet information such as
flight schedules and news headlines, and conducting online transactions
such as movie ticket purchases or online stock trades, from 260 of the most
populated areas in the United States. The Palm VII organizer, which is
scheduled to enter its national field trial in early 1999, is expected to
be widely available in the U.S. later in 1999 for less than U.S. $800.
Internet access service is expected to be available from $10 per month.

Incorporating Palm Computing's renowned design commitment to simplicity and
compact size, the Palm VII organizer will provide an easy-to-use, total
information access solution right out of the box. To accomplish this, Palm
Computing achieved several significant technological advancements,
including over-the-air service activation, instant Internet service with
customized access to leading Internet sites, fast wireless Internet
messaging and built-in security. In addition, the Palm VII organizer will
achieve weeks of performance on two AAA batteries. Palm Computing
Introduces Web Clipping. With the Palm VII organizer, 3Com also introduces
a revolutionary new model for accessing Internet information, called "web
clipping." Web clipping is a means of extracting only a specific set of
needed information from a given web site, eliminating the extraneous
information prevalent in the Internet browsing paradigm. Companies can
easily make their web content available for web clipping directly from the
Palm VII organizer. Twenty-two of the world's leading Internet content
providers have already done so: ABCNEWS.com, Bank of America, BellSouth
Wireless Data, Certicom, ESPN.com, Etak, E*TRADE, Fodor's, Frommer's,
MapQuest, Mastercard, Merriam-Webster, Moviefone, OAG, TheStreet.com,
TicketMaster, Travelocity, UPS, USA Today, U.S. West, Visa International,
The Wall Street Journal Interactive Edition, The Weather Channel, and
Yahoo!.

In addition to the web clipping feature, the Palm VII organizer will
include the new iMessenger application for instantly sending and receiving
Internet messages wirelessly. Wireless network service for both web
clipping and two-way messaging is widely available throughout most of the
U.S.

"For wireless Internet access to be viable on a handheld device, it first
had to be made simple, fast, and affordable. This required a number of
technical advancements and an entirely new approach to moving information
from the Internet to an individual," said Janice Roberts, senior vice
president of 3Com and acting president of Palm Computing. "The Palm VII
organizer is our first step in enabling a new class of information access
and e-commerce solutions for the handheld computing industry. This is
clearly only the beginning of a new era of personal communications." With
the increasing mobility of the U.S. workforce and explosive growth in
Internet and intranet use, more professionals and corporations recognize
the importance of extending Internet data access into the mobile, wireless
environment. The Yankee Group, a leading industry research firm, estimates
that there will be nearly seven million wireless and mobile data
subscribers by 1999, increasing to more than 21 million by 2002. The Palm
VII organizer is intended to address the needs of this burgeoning market,
specifically for customers requiring wireless mobile Internet access. The
Palm III and PalmPilot Professional Edition organizers will continue to
serve as Palm Computing's mainstream offerings, addressing the personal
organization and business productivity segments of the handheld computing
market.

While public Internet content accessible from a Palm VII organizer will be
ideal for consumers, travelers and mobile professionals, businesses can
also take advantage of its wireless data capabilities for accessing
enterprise data within corporate Intranets. The Palm VII organizer was
created using standard Internet and data center technologies familiar to
web and IT managers. It incorporates the same level of security as any
web-based transaction site such as E*TRADE or Movielink.com. Because it is
standards-based, corporate IS departments can easily set up a server
outside the firewall that gives Palm VII organizer users access to legacy
data sources such as a mainframe databases or enterprise resource planning
(ERP) systems.

Palm VII Features and Services. The Palm VII organizer delivers wireless
Internet connectivity together with the shirt-pocket size, fast data
access, long battery life and ease-of-use that has given Palm Computing
platform products their worldwide market leadership. In addition to 3Com's
award-winning set of personal organization and business productivity
functions, the new product incorporates several key innovative features and
services in areas from hardware and application design to Internet service
structure and information security. These include a two-way radio with
integrated antenna, bundled Palm.Net service, the web clipping and
iMessenger applications and industrial-strength security, which enables a
vast range of new e-commerce and financial services applications. Following
is an overview of each:

Built-in two-way radio and integrated antenna. 3Com designed a tiny two-way
radio and integrated it into the hardware design of the Palm VII organizer,
using a form factor similar to the Palm III organizer. An ergonomic antenna
in the Palm VII product serves both as a radio frequency receiver and an
automatic on/off switch for Internet applications.

Palm.Net Service: 3Com's Wireless Internet Service. To provide one-stop
service and support, communications service and billing, 3Com is delivering
the wireless Internet service directly to consumers through a new service
called Palm.Net. To activate the service, users simply enter secure billing
and credit card information into the registration screen that appears the
first time the Palm VII antenna is raised, and within a few minutes the
device is ready to access the Internet and send and receive wireless
Internet messages. Subscribers to the Palm.Net service will be billed
conveniently on their credit cards on a monthly basis, starting at less
than $10 per month.

The Wireless Data Infrastructure. The underlying wireless network for the
Palm.Net service is provided by BellSouth Wireless Data, a leading provider
of proven wireless data communications solutions. The BellSouth Intelligent
Wireless NetworkSM covers 93 percent of the nation's urban business
population, ensuring a broad range of service coverage across the U.S. The
Intelligent Wireless Network also provides the Palm VII organizer with a
breakthrough feature called Wireless Subscription Management, which allows
users to activate their organizer right out of the box. The Palm VII
organizer is the first product ever to employ this technological innovation
from BellSouth Wireless Data.

While the BellSouth network is based on Mobitex technology from Ericsson,
the core components of the Palm VII organizer and the Palm.Net system are
built on standards that are completely network-independent, so future
support for other wireless data standards is possible.

Web Clipping: Fast, Accurate Information Access. Web clipping differs from
contemporary web browsing, which has proven to be slow and cumbersome on
handheld devices. 3Com believes that wireless handheld Internet users want
to access a specific set of information quickly, accurately and frequently
throughout the day. To access Internet data on the Palm VII organizer, a
user simply raises the antenna, which calls up a screen containing a list
of applications. By tapping on one of these applications using the Palm VII
stylus, the user calls up a new screen known as a Palm query application.

The query application allows the user to define the specific type of
information desired - such as a stock quote, flight schedule or restaurant
listing -- by selecting from pre-installed options. The user can then send
the query to the Internet with a tap of the stylus, and within seconds, a
web "clipping" is returned - a page of results catered to the user's
specified requests and specifically formatted for viewing on the Palm VII
screen.

Because query applications reside on the device itself, and the wireless
radio is not activated until it is sent by the user, the process of
accessing the Internet is done with minimum power requirements, so the
product can easily achieve long battery life. The special formatting, which
is handled by servers hosted by Palm Computing, prevents the consumption of
large amounts of Internet bandwidth between the device and the Internet,
helping to ensure fast, low-cost delivery of information.
Industrial-Strength Security: Enabling Secure E-Commerce Transactions. To
ensure the highest level of security for high-value applications such as
electronic commerce and stock trading over the wireless network, 3Com
integrated industrial-strength security features at the device, network and
Internet server levels. The primary technology for protecting activation of
the Palm VII organizer and online transactions made using the product is
provided by Certicom, Inc., the pioneer of a powerful and efficient
security system available for handheld devices and wireless data networks,
known as elliptic curve cryptography. Additional password protection on the
device protects the user's information in case of a lost or stolen device.

iMessenger Software: Instant Wireless Internet Messaging Application. In
addition to the web clipping application, Palm VII organizers come with the
new iMessenger application for sending and receiving Internet messages
wirelessly. The iMessenger feature gives Palm VII users the freedom to send
notes to any standard e-mail address from virtually anywhere in the U.S.
Like the web clipping application, the iMessenger application is a
streamlined version of how e-mail works on a PC. The iMessenger application
is used in the same way as the standard Palm Mail application, except that
iMessenger mail is sent instantaneously via the wireless radio rather than
when the device is synchronized with a PC. To check for new messages, the
user simply raises the antenna and presses a button, and all messages
waiting in queue appear on the Palm VII screen. Third-Party Developers:
Providing a Wealth of Available Content. The information delivered from the
Internet to the device comes from the original content source -- the only
difference is in the presentation of the information. Using standard web
authoring tools, any web content provider can easily make their content
accessible to Palm VII users. In a related announcement today, 3Com
outlined a content developer program through which businesses can quickly
accomplish this. As more content becomes available, users will be able to
download new query applications directly from the Internet using their Palm
VII organizer. For information on becoming an Internet content partner,
visit www.palm.com/devzone.

About 3Com Corp.

With more than 200 million customers worldwide, 3Com Corporation connects
more people in more ways to information than any other networking company.
3Com delivers innovative information access products and network system
solutions to large, medium and small enterprises; carriers and network
service providers; PC OEMs; and consumers. 3Com More connected. For
further information, visit 3Com's World Wide Web site at www.3com.com or
the press site at www.3com.com/pressbox or Palm Computing at www.palm.com.

 

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