Verizon Likely to Add Palm Pre, Pixi at Consumer Electronics Show
“Now we aren’t typically the carrier that comes out and announces what we are going to be selling 12 months from now. Other carriers do that, and the media loves to speculate on what we are bringing to market. But what I will tell you is that over the next six months or so you will see devices like the Palm Pre and the Cousin on our network from Palm.”
Verizon has carried just about every smartphone Palm has ever built, so it was really just a matter of time before the carrier began selling Palm’s Pre and Pixi. According to Bloomberg, Verizon will be doing just that in the months ahead.
“Persons who decline to be named” tell the business news service that the carrier will announce the addition of the Palm smartphones to its lineup this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Both will boast enhancements beyond those currently offered; the Pixi, for example, will gain the Wi-Fi connectivity it sorely lacks.
Great news for Palm (PALM), which will obviously benefit from the sizable addressable market Verizon (VZ) offers, as I noted yesterday. While Sprint (S) has been a faithful partner for Palm, it is hemorrhaging subscribers and lags Verizon, the industry leader in the U.S.
As Morgan Stanley analyst Ehud Gelblum recently noted, Palm’s primary trouble has been its limited distribution through Sprint.
Said Gelblum: “We believe the single most important factor for Palm over the next year is the reach of its distribution network, which we expect to expand markedly in 2010 as Palm’s exclusivity agreement with Sprint expires, and the strength of its branding and advertising campaign, which has just been gutted, revamped and restarted. We believe both of these events should lead to market share gains, and ultimately margin expansion through greater scale.”
Reached for comment, Palm declined to offer one.