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Sometimes someone you'd written off surprises you. Take Palm, for example. My first ever hand-held computer was a Palm - or PalmPilot as they were called then. So was my second, and my third. I really, really liked them.

Then things moved on a little, or indeed a lot. Compaq entered the fray with the iPaq and as far as I was concerned I had the ultimate little gadget, it looked like my desktop and it was perfect. It grew and a little later I had ideas of attaching it to a phone.

Later on Apple entered the market with an iPod called the iPod Touch, but it did everything previous PDAs had done. Then there was the iPhone, and the Google Android.

Each of which has done very well by allowing third party developers in to the party - and suddenly, wouldn't you believe it, Palm is doing the same thing. Interestingly it's only doing so after abandoning its old operating system and going Windows.

I'm not sure whether it's going to work, to be honest. Palm has for some time looked more than a little dead in the water compared to the competition, and a worldwide recession isn't the time for people to be risking everything on an old supplier trying to make a comeback. We'll see how it turns out, but I'm guessing this won't be worrying Apple or Google all that much anytime soon.

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