Handspring grows bored with Springboard

— 12:00 AM on June 3, 2002

Per this story at ZDNet, Handspring has announced that they're ditching the Springboard expansion slot. For those unfamiliar with Handspring's products, the Springboard is a port on the back of Handspring PDA's which allows plug-in modules. The modules offer a wide variety of features, from a backing up the PDA's data to functioning as cellular telephones or cameras. Ironically, the Springboard feature was originally Handspring's big selling point for their line of PDA's.

Of course, it's not like the writing wasn't on the wall. With the introduction of the Visor Edge, it became clear that the Springboard form factor was holding Handspring back from making smaller devices. On a more general note, Handspring had previously announced that they were getting out of the PDA business altogether, moving instead to cellphone/PDA combo devices like the Treo.

However, according to the article, the lack of a Springboard slot doesn't mean that the Treo line won't be expandable. Currently, one Treo model comes with a Secure Digital expansion slot. If Secure Digital technology advances as exptected, the expansion format could provide many features currently covered by Springboard modules, from backup to Bluetooth.

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