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Visor Offers Shades of Palm Handhelds

Handspring, Inc. this week announced Visor, a handheld organizer based on the Palm operating system that promises to run faster, store more information, and be more expandable than current Palm devices. Visor also includes Macintosh software and a USB-based docking cradle out of the box; Palm Computing’s current offerings require the purchase of a cable adapter for Mac serial or USB connections and a separate purchase (or free download) of the Mac Palm Desktop software. (See "Palm Desktop Marks Return of a Familiar Organizer" in TidBITS 469.) Shipping in October, Visor will be available in three configurations ranging from $150 to $250, offer between 2 MB and 8 MB of RAM, and can come in five different colors for the Visor Deluxe version – including, of course, translucent versions. The Visor is based on the Palm OS, which means it is software-compatible with existing Palm applications, but also features updated Date Book (actually a licensed, modified version of Pimlico Software‘s excellent DateBk3 application) and Calculator applications, plus a new World Clock utility. The Visor’s biggest departure from the Palm Computing line of organizers is Springboard, a slot on the back of the unit that accepts expansion modules which can offer add-ons such as extra memory, a modem, backup data storage, software applications, and future possibilities like cellular phone modules or MP3 music players.

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