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Buzzword Compliant Big Announcement
We've not had our meeting yet, but PalmSource has posted a press release. Yow! We now have a major Chinese presence, and we're turning into a Linux company. You can read more at http://www.palmsource.com/press/cms_announcement.html. Here are excerpts from the press release:

SUNNYVALE, Calif., December 8, 2004 — PalmSource, Inc. (NASDAQ: PSRC), provider of Palm OS®, a leading operating system powering next generation mobile devices and smartphones today announced entry into an agreement for the acquisition of China MobileSoft Limited (CMS), a leading Chinese mobile phone software company with business operations headquartered with its wholly-owned subsidiary, MobileSoft Technology (Nanjing), in China. Pursuant to the agreement, PalmSource would issue approximately 1,570,000 shares of PalmSource common stock in exchange for the outstanding equity and rights to acquire equity in CMS. The transaction is subject to certain conditions, including CMS shareholder approval. The transaction is anticipated to close before the end of PalmSource's third fiscal quarter, ending February 28, 2005.

CMS and its subsidiaries currently offer customers a wide range of software for mobile phones, including more than a dozen phone applications, operating software for smart and feature phones. The company has also been developing a version of Linux optimized for mobile devices. In the future, we plan to give the phone applications and phone software the Palm OS look-and-feel and data compatibility, extending the Palm OS ease-of-use to all classes of mobile phones worldwide.

PalmSource will continue to offer both Palm OS® Garnet and Palm OS® Cobalt to support a broad range of mobile devices including smartphones. PalmSource also plans to implement Palm OS on top of Linux, bringing the benefits of Palm OS to the Linux community, including the award winning user interface, software frameworks based on the best of Palm OS and BeOS®, a large base of professional and consumer applications, and an enthusiastic community of more than 25 million users and over 360,000 registered developers. PalmSource intends to work as a partner within the Linux community to help Linux grow rapidly in the consumer and enterprise mobile markets.

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(Deleted comment)
Well, I can't officially comment yet, but I think the big benefit is that many phone makers are already using Linux as a base for their mid-range phone platforms, so this lets us sell our user interface, PIM applications, and developer community to them. It also helps with getting device drivers for new hardware, since it means we can use existing Linux drivers for things like radio, flash memory systems, and display hardware. There are some good FAQs up on the palmsource.com site now.

China likes open source. When you've got a large population, licensing costs add up quickly. So, if you're in the mobile phone space in China, there's already a bunch of Linux stuff out there that would be easier to hook up to than rewrite.

Very true; from China Mobilesoft's view, this is also good for them, as it lets them move out of China to market their technology to the world. China Mobilesoft also has a software stack that sits on RTOSes like Nucleus, and we'll have the ability to port our core applications and data formats to that stack, allowing PalmSource to participate on feature phones at much lower price points than today's smartphones.

Wow - THAT was out of the blue...

You know - This is the first time I've felt positive about PalmSource since Handera left.

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