Palm unveils $99 PDA

— 12:25 PM on October 8, 2002

Palm has officially unveiled the Zire, a new low-cost handheld that lists at only $99. At that price, there's not much in the way of hardware. Palm has even dropped the backlight, which makes the Zire all but useless in the dark. However, unlike other low-end handhelds, the Zire includes an internal rechargeable battery.

Simplicity and ease of use appear to be Palm's key selling points for the Zire, which is the first real sub-$100 PDA. At that price point, Palm really has no competition, especially not when you factor in the rechargeable battery. Palm itself has been struggling of late, but the Zire has the kind of mainstream appeal that could lift the handheld company from the doldrums. The question is, will students, soccer moms, and Joe Sixpack see value in the Zire, or will they keep scribbling notes on paper organizers?

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