Tuesday, January 30, 2007

The LifeDrive Murder Mystery

The LifeDrive from Palm has been discontinued in Europe, killed off by RoHS. Actually, it was killed off over a year ago. What happened? It was such a promising product, and so young. Let's look at the progression of events in the LifeDrive's life:

  • Spring, 2005 - LifeDrive debut, selling for $500.
  • January, 2006 - Price cut, dropped to $450.
  • March, 2006 - Another price cut, dropped to $400.
  • July 1, 2006 - LifeDrive pulled from Europe due to RoHS, not widely announced.
  • July 10, 2006 - Rumors circulate that the LifeDrive is going out of production, only a little after a year in production. Palm denies it.
  • January 29, 2007 - LifeDrive labelled 'End of Life' at Palm's store.

A little suspicious if you ask me. Three price cuts, then pulled from Europe, but still widely available in the US. With the hush-hush, doesn't it look like Palm is dumping these things on US soil to extend the product cycle a little bit? Because they didn't do their homework on RoHS. Now they probably figure that it would hurt their image to keep it out there. What did Palm know, and when did they know it?

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