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Device in early production stages as Jobs confirms Apple/Palm partnership

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The results of Apple's co-development partnership with Palm Computing look set to emerge in the very near future, now that early samples of an Apple-branded PalmOS-based device have already started coming off Taiwanese production lines. Apple CEO Steve Jobs himself confirmed the two companies' close ties this week, during his keynote at Macworld Expo, held in San Francisco. Introducing Palm CEO Carl Yankowski, Jobs told the audience Apple had been "doing a lot of work with these guys lately". Such co-operation has long been suspected, ever since Jobs admitted late 1998 that he had attempted by buy Palm from its parent, 3Com (as, apparently, did Bill Gates). However, Apple has never given official confirmation of the partnership, or given any hint as to its direction. Meanwhile, Taiwanese sources close to a leading OEM -- though none will say who this leader is -- claim contacts within the company have seen early Apple-branded Palm-style devices in limited production. Details of the device other than its existence are scant to say the least, but it does suggest Apple is getting much closer to announcing a PDA of its own. Its last attempt was the ill-fated Newton MessagePad, the first true PDA, but alas released long before the technology was ready for the mainstream. Jobs himself canned the Newton project back in 1998. At this stage, the comments from Taiwan are a tad too vague to be certain, but they do suggest that Apple's Palm plans are moving forward, confirmed by Jobs' remarks. ® See also Palm dismisses WAP out of hand Apple consumed by consumers Palm colour-screen IIIc to ship February

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