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Palm phones are making a comeback this year, but not the way you think

Updated Nov 22nd, 2019 4:34AM EST
TCL Palm Phone Release Date
Image: YouTube

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If you’re not too young to remember Palm smartphones, and especially the Pre family of webOS devices, then you might be mildly excited to hear the Palm brand is making a comeback this year, with Verizon set to carry one such device later this year.

But before you go real excited about webOS, you should know the new Palm phones won’t be made by the original company, which doesn’t really exist anymore. Instead, it’s Chines device maker TCL that’s reviving the brand. You know, just like what happened with Nokia last year. And Palm won’t run an exciting version of webOS. Expect Android to power the phone.

It’s not that surprising to hear that TCL might be interested in Palm. A report last summer did say that TCL would manufacture Palm smartphones this year, after having acquired the rights to the Palm name all the way back in 2015. The same vendor also makes Android-based BlackBerry phones that nobody is really buying. HMD Global, meanwhile, was quite successful at reviving the Nokia brand. Then again, Nokia used to be the undisputed king of the mobile business back when Palm was also in business.

According to Android Police’s sources, Verizon will launch this first Palm-branded smartphone in the second half of the year. That’s pretty much everything we know about the handset, aside from the fact that it’ll run Android. However, the fact that long-time Palm partner Verizon is interested in this collaboration with TCL is interesting.

Will the brand new Palm phone look and feel anything like the Palm Pre phones that HP bought before killing the brand? That particular design is obsolete by today’s smartphone standards. Will it have a notch like the iPhone X? Time will tell. As of right now, there are no leaked images of this alleged Palm phone.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.