Many of Palm Inc.s problems have come from promising hardware before it is ready. But some Palm software partners say the company also has a problem of not doing a good job selling available products.
Palm partner DataViz Inc. recently alerted Palm to a Microsoft Corp. print advertisement, which says, "For example, only Pocket PC has a genuine pocket version of Microsoft Word, so you can access and view your important documents in their original format. Then you can edit them with powerful tools like spell check, word count and text formatting."
Palm devices dont come with Word, but DataVizs Documents To Go software, which runs on Palm OS, enables users to view and edit Word and Microsoft Excel documents. The software comes bundled on a CD with Palms m500 and m505 handhelds.
Palm recently split its operating system and hardware divisions into separate units and launched new developer programs, but the company has done little to market the third-party software available for its platform.
Palm officials have acknowledged the company needs to do more to show that it provides both software and software support.
"If we havent done a good job of telling them that, then shame on us, to be honest," software division President and CEO David Nagel said. "Most of the licensees do tier-one support for customers, and I expect that to continue. But we clearly have to be doing a much better job if our licensees are going to be selling to the enterprise. We clearly have to have a support channel for the enterprise guys, and thats something were putting together."
Palm late last month announced it is laying off 250 employees, the latest in a series of cutbacks for the Santa Clara, Calif., company. The cutbacks follow the ousting of CEO Carl Yankow-ski early last month and the decision to terminate MyPalm portal services.