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Palm Treo Pro with Windows Mobile officially announced

Releasing its latest Treo, Palm offers up the new Treo Pro running Windows Mobile.

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Releasing a new Treo, Palm offers up the new Treo Pro running Windows Mobile. Following the standard Palm design, the new Pro features a bar shape, touchscreen and QWERTY keyboard and comes loaded with a wide spectrum of connectivity options.

Palm, Inc. has taken the wraps off its next Windows Mobile smartphone, the Treo Pro.

Unofficial reports on this device have been all over the Internet the past week, but now Palm has given the world its first official information on this model.

An overview of the Treo Pro
This smartphone will have the design that's become a hallmark of the Treo line, a candybar shape with 320-by-320-pixel touchscreen above a QWERTY thumb-keyboard.

It runs Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional on a 400 MHz processor from Qualcomm. This operating system from Microsoft comes with a suite of applications for browsing the Web, email, working with Office files, playing audio and video, and more.

The Pro will be a quad-band GSM device with tri-band UMTS/HSDPA support, which means it can be used for both phone calls and 3G wireless access around the world.

In addition, it will have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

This smartphone will have 128 MB of RAM and 256 MB of Flash ROM, of which 100 MB will be available to users for holding files and applications. It will also include an external microSD card slot for additional storage.

The Treo Pro will also offer a built-in GPS receiver and a 2.0 MPx camera.

Palm says its 1500 mAh lithium-ion battery will be good for up to 5.0 hours of talk time and up to 250 hours stand-by time.

Overall, this device will be 4.5 inches tall, 2.4 inches wide, and 0.5 inches thick. It will weigh 4.7 oz.

Palm's special touch
Palm is emphasizing that this isn't a "stock" Windows Mobile device, because it has the benefit of Palm's long experience in making smartphones.

The Treo Pro includes this company's screen saver, which lets users know at a glance -- without turning on the device -- what time it is and whether they've missed a call or have a new SMS/MMS message.

It also has some non-standard hardware buttons, like one that immediately silences the device.

"The Treo Pro smartphone brings together a powerful combination of Palm's feature innovations and Windows Mobile 6.1, providing access to the information people need when away from the office," said Andrew Lees, senior vice president of Microsoft's Mobile Communications Business.

Pricing and availability
The Treo Pro will be available next month in Europe through Vodafone (from free to EUR 400 with contract) and O2 (pricing to be announced later), and in Australia through Telstra (from free with contract).

It will be available in the United States in the fall through the Palm online store as well as other retailers for a suggested price of $550. The U.S. version will be unlocked and unsubsidized, so customers will be able to use it with any GSM carrier -- like AT&T and T-Mobile -- by inserting their SIM card.

Palm also plans to release an unlocked version of the Treo Pro in Europe and the Asia Pacific region.

More information on this smartphone can be found on Palm's website.

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