Product Watch: Palm Power Without The Palm Price!

Back in 1998, the former CEO of Palm Computing and the inventor of the Palm/Palm Pilot ventured off on their own and formed a company called Handspring. Handspring's goal was to create a "consumer oriented" handheld. This vision has finally born fruit on the form of the Visor line. Handspring licenced and made a few modifications to the Palm OS including

  • Built in support for USB
  • Advanced Datebook - Can now display to-do items.
  • Calculator - Can perform scientific calculations.
  • Built in support for floating point calculations.
  • World Clock - With support for up to 5 time zones.

Apart from the improvements to the OS, the main selling point that Handspring is pitching is the Visor's external expansion slot called "Springboard." The springboard expansion slot accepts both hardware and software add on modules. Handspring's site currently lists four different modules for the visor:

Modem - Due in November, the modem module runs at 33.6k and allows you to synchronize with your computer remotely and, with the appropriate 3rd party software, send faxes, surf the web and check or send e-mail. MSRP $129.95

8MB Flash Module - For those who just can't get enough of those shareware applications. Handspring estimates that the 8MB module will hold 200 average sized applications. The flash module can also be used for backup. MSRP $79.95

Backup Module - Can back up the entire Visor with "one touch." MSRP $39.95

Tiger Woods PGA Tour - Contains the game of the same name from Electronic Arts. MSRP $29.95


There are currently three different Visors available although Handspring is having problems keeping up with production. The Visor is currently only available through the Handspring site although there are plans for retail distribution next year. When the Visor line is available through normal retail channels we put up a buyers' guide page for them. Below is a chart outlining the specs of each model.


Visor Model
RAM Size Weight Cradle Infrared Colors Cover Microphone
Visor Solo
2MB 4.8" x 3.0" x 0.7" 5.4oz No Yes Graphite Snap Cover Yes
2MB 4.8" x 3.0" x 0.7" 5.4oz Yes Yes Graphite Snap Cover Yes
Visor Deluxe
8MB 4.8" x 3.0" x 0.7" 5.4oz Yes Yes Graphite
Snap Cover
Leather Slip Case

Check for current lowest price on Visors

External Links

  • Reviews other handheld devices including the Palm.
  • All Online Macintosh Hardware and Software Reviewed

Back to MacSpeedZone Front Page

MacSpeedZone welcomes your comments on this page

For Free Macintosh Hardware Click Here

| Top |