Palm pals join Tungsten C

Palm Inc. has announced five new technology partnerships for voice over IP (VoIP), Wi-Fi and authentication software based on protocol by Cisco Systems Inc. for Palm’s handheld device, the Tungsten C.

Mountain View, Calif.-based VL Inc., a session initiation protocol (SIP)-compliant VoIP software and services company, is introducing Gphone for Palm handhelds to enable VoIP for Palm Tungsten C users. The Gphone will allow device users to communicate with other Palm handhelds using corporate wireless networks, public hotspots or wireless home networks, Palm said.

Three other companies that will provide deals and discounts related to Wi-Fi technology include: Linksys Group Inc. based in Irvine, Calif., specializing in sales of wireless routers, network cards and USB adapters; Wayport Inc. in Austin, Tex., a provider of 802.11b wireless and wired high-speed Internet access in hotels; and WiFinder Inc., a free public hotspot locator service.

Palm said Linksys, Wayport and WiFinder are working with it to drive new interest in Wi-Fi.

Palm is also working with Portsmouth, N.H.-based Meetinghouse Data Communications, which will offer a security solution – AEGIS WLAN – that supports Lightweight Extensible Authentication Protocol (LEAP), a standards-based authentication method for Tungsten C handhelds, Palm said. LEAP was developed by Cisco.

These agreements make wireless Internet or corporate network usage more accessible, versatile and secure for professionals using the Palm Tungsten C handheld while away from their desks, the company said in a statement.

The Tungsten C, which is listed at $749, falls in place with Palm’s business product line and is the company’s first device to offer integrated Wi-Fi, or 802.11b for wireless connectivity. It includes the 5.2 Palm operating system, 64MB of memory and uses a 400MHz Intel XScale handheld processor.

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