According to some analysts Dell may be about to enter the cell phone market to keep up with rivals Apple and HP.
Wireless market analyst Jack Gold, of J Gold Associates, also suggested that this might best be achieved by buying an "established player" such as Palm and jettisoning "the non-strategic components of Palm's business".
Gold's predictions are centred around Ron Garriques, the former Motorola handset boss lured to Dell less than two weeks ago to run its consumer division. "Garriques… brings another unique capability which we believe Dell is on the verge of utilising. He has extensive wireless experience, an area [where] Dell will have to become a player — and soon — as HP and Apple push into this key market segment," wrote Gold on Monday.
According to Gold's analysis, Dell would stop selling standalone PDAs — a fast-dying market — "within the year", concentrating instead on "offering a smartphone device that has all of the features both business and high-end consumers would want (eg push email, office document viewing/editing, media capability)".