In a recent conversation with Palm, I learned that Palm will be embracing Microsoft's new System Center Mobile Device Manager 2008, but that embrace only extends to a limited number of devices right off the bat.
Specifically, Palm announced it is working with AT&T to provide an update to Treo 750 devices in order to make them work with the new management system. There were no announcements regarding Windows Mobile-based Treos from other carriers at this time, nor for legacy AT&T-enabled Treo 680s.
Some interesting side notes of the conversation:
As expected, this compatibility with Microsoft's management solution will not extend to devices running PalmOS. While this is no surprise, I was taken aback by some of the perspectives I heard about the aging OS.
Essentially, Palm is positioning the PalmOS as its consumer-friendly, entry-level operating system. We've already seen the beginnings of this plan with the new $99 Palm Centro device, but I had not realized how pervasive this shift was intended to be.
For the enterprise, Windows Mobile is the platform as far as Palm is concerned. It is what Palm is recommending to its business customers, particularly to take advantage of newer WM features like push e-mail, remote management and security services that can now be had without additional middleware investments.
Also, it looks like Palm is working with AT&T to deliver Windows Mobile 6 to the Treo 750 in a separate update sometime in 2008. This is good news for current customers looking to upgrade to advanced features in the new version of the OS.