Palm, Sony Ericsson to optimize Bluetooth link

PalmSource Inc. and Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications AB will work together to ease setting up a Bluetooth wireless connection between devices running the Palm OS and Sony Ericsson mobile phones, the companies said Thursday.

PalmSource, the Palm OS subsidiary of Palm Inc., and Sony Ericsson, the handset joint venture of Sony Corp. and Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson, will strive for out-of-the-box compatibility between Bluetooth-enabled Sony Ericsson phones and handhelds running the Palm OS, the companies said at a Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA) event in Las Vegas.

Users should be able, for example, to easily connect their personal digital assistant (PDA) to the Internet via a GPRS (General Packet Radio Service) phone and automatically dial a phone number on the phone from their PDA address book, PalmSource and Sony Ericsson said.

Bluetooth is a specification for radio-based wireless links between devices, removing the need for cords and wires. Sony Ericsson of London was among the first to offer a handset with built-in Bluetooth support, the T68i. Earlier this year, the company entered into a marketing relationship with Palm to bundle the T68i with Palm PDAs.

Sunnyvale, Calif., PalmSource and Sony Ericsson did not say when they expect the first results of their cooperation, which was agreed in a memorandum of understanding. Sony, which has been a Palm OS licensee since 1999 and uses the Palm software in its Clie PDAs, earlier this month took a 6 per cent stake in PalmSource for US$20 million.