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Palm Showcases New Accessories at CTIA

Mon Mar 26, 2007 - 4:48 PM EDT - By Jennifer Chappell


Many accidents in the United States are due to drivers using cell phones and other handheld devices. California is one of five states that is currently enforcing, or intending to enforce a ban on the use of cell phones without hands-free features while driving.

Back in August 2006, Palm announced it would support the California bill and believes the bill responsibly addresses evidence that wireless-phone use increases the risk of accidents. As the first handset company to support the California bill, Palm felt that its passage could be instrumental in leading other states to follow suit and improve driving safety.

Well, Palm announced today at the CTIA Wireless Show the newest additions to its line of hands-free accessories, including three car kits and a new combination GPS/hands-free speakerphone solution available for a variety of PalmĀ® Treo(tm) smartphones. These accessories further Palm's initiative to provide customers with tools to make their mobile experience simple and safer, especially while driving.

Available immediately are a number of hands-free, installation car kits for use with a variety of Palm Treo smartphones. These kits offer clear voice performance and such functions as Auto Answer. In states that have hands-free laws, these car kits also meet the legal standards for use while driving, and the professionally installed cradle holds the Treo smartphone securely in place.

  • The Comfort Plus DSP Hands-free Car Kit: An affordable option for Treo 680 and Treo 750 customers, this kit has an estimated U.S. street price of $199.

  • The Take&Talk DSP Cradle CarTalk Hands-free Car Kit: This kit enables Treo 680 and Treo 750 users to enjoy many functions, including DSP (Digital Signal Processing) technology, which cuts noise and echo for clear voice performance, and an extended antenna for greater network sensitivity. This product has an estimated U.S. street price of $259.

  • Take&Talk DSP Hands-free Car Kit Cradle: This product is for existing THB Bury UNI System 8 car kit users who are ready to switch over to a Treo 650 or Treo 700 series smartphone. This product has an estimated U.S. street price of $149.

  • Palm also announced the GPS Navigator Car Kit, which includes an integrated GPS and a hands-free speakerphone. Treo 750 smartphone customers can get voice-guided, turn-by-turn directions, or keep in touch with friends and family, all the while keeping their eyes on the road and their hands on the wheel.

    "Palm is committed to accessorizing Treo smartphones with technologies that promote a hands-free and safer lifestyle," said Jim Schwabe, senior director for handhelds and accessories at Palm. "Palm creates its accessories so that they are both functional and fashionable, appealing to Treo users around the world."

    Palm also announced some new cases to dress up and protect customers' Treo smartphones:

  • Treo Air Case and Holster - Compatible with Treo 680 and Treo 750 smartphones, this case is strong yet lightweight, and practically invisible. It is made of durable polycarbonate and is sleek, smooth and strong. It can be used alone to protect the Treo smartphone or with the holster for easy access. This product has an estimated U.S. street price of $25. The Treo Air Case is picture to the right.

  • Vaja Classic Pouch - Compatible with Treo 680 and Treo 750 smartphones, these stylish cases come in a variety of colors, have magnetic snap closure and slots for SD and Mini SD cards. The Vaja cases are made of full-grain Argentine leather. Pricing starts at $65.

  • eNOVO by EB - This top-loading case was crafted especially to hug the contours of the Treo 680 and Treo 750 smartphones to provide sleek, semi-rigid protection. It is made from supersoft, fine-grain leather, and the removable cover and belt-clip system give customers multiple options for use.

    Well, it sure sounds like Palm has some interesting things going on at the CTIA. You can find Palm at CTIA at Booth No. 741. Palm's booth includes eight featured partners, a hands-on demo station and a "try and buy" area where Palm will have a free trial program with AT&T (formerly Cingular Wireless) - dozens of Treo 680s/Treo 750s).

    I'm glad that Palm is dedicated to making accessories for our Treos that will make our driving experience much safer. Now if everyone who drives and talks on cell phones would just buy accessories like these and use their phones hands-free! I can't tell you how many people I see on a daily basis swerving all over the road. And yep, you guessed it, they have cell phones glued to the side of their heads. I watched a car a couple of days ago swerving on the road. The driver kept veering towards the right and even went off the road a few times. When I was close enough to see the driver's head, and believe me, I wasn't going to get too close, I could see that the guy was talking on a cell phone. My, my, what a surprise. NOT! I have a friend who has neck problems because of a woman who slammed into the back of her car. The woman was talking on her cell phone and didn't notice my friend stopping in time. It's not that hard to find a device for your cell phone in which to enable you to talk hands-free. When I bought my Treo 680, I was glad to see that included in the box was a Treo hands-free headset. I've used it many times while driving and it works great!

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