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Palm preps PalmOS 4.0 upgrade

Takes III- and V-series PDAs to m50x level (minus whizzo hardware, of course)

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Palm will release PalmOS 4.0 as a standalone update in November, according to sources cited by Web site Palm Infocenter.

PalmOS 4.0 actually shipped in May, bundled with the company's m50x PDAs. The upgrade fixed a few bugs and enhanced a couple of existing features but essentially added support for the new machines' hardware - the m505's 16-bit colour screen and both PDA's Secure Digital Card slot - to the OS.

Not much reason, then, to put it on an older monochrome, slot-less model, you might well think. Arguably not. PalmOS licensee Handspring doesn't appear to think so. A spokesman told Palm Infocenter that the company was happy with the PalmOS 3.5 feature-set.

As the article points out, however, making the upgrade available for Sony's PEG-N710C, which can support 16-bit colour, will be good news for Clié users. Sony has confirmed that is preparing a version of the OS 4.0 upgrade for its own machines.

Palm's version will support both III- and V-series PDAs. The company charged $20 for the last big operating system upgrade, Palm OS 3.5, and given the state of its finances, we suspect it will feel tempted to do the same again.

Users who can't wait may like to install OS 3.5.3, recently released as a free download on Palm's Web site. Again, there's nothing new here, but a handful of minor fixes which "resolve low-level system issues that in some circumstances might cause certain third party applications to not function as intended". The update requires PalmOS 3.5 or above. ®

Related Links

Palm Infocenter: OS 4.0 Upgrade Coming Soon to A Palm Near You
Palm's PalmOS 3.5.3 installer can be found here

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