Ready for the Treo 680? We're liveblogging the event from DigitalLife, so keep your fingers on that F5 button and follow along after the break...
Update: Pics are up; keep reading for the the full text and images...
1:13PM EST: Welcome everyone. We're providing a device which offers a lower price than any product we've offered before.
1:14PM: So Palm's mission -- we strive to be the world's leading mobile company. The way I look at this, is that this Treo is a very powerful mobile computer. We want to create category defining products. We try not to think too much about technology for technology's sake; we're ocused on ease of use and simplicity.
1:15PM: We're driven by customer-centric approach. We think about pockets, not processors. We think about every single button on these devices. We think about instinct, not instruction. With this product we're trying to connect with more people around the world. We focused in the past on mobile professionals --with this product we hope we reach into another group with a product that benefits them personally.
1:16PM: We'd like to introduce the Treo 680!
1:17PM: ...in multiple fun colors! Great new price point -- won't get into specifics today.
1:18PM: But it will be very competitively priced. Graphite, Copper, Arctic, and Crimson are the new colors. Snazzy.
1:19PM: We're pushing the design to make it more phone-like; we want to expand geographically and demographically. We've been very successful in the States, and we have many carrier partners around the world.
1:20PM: We just launched the Treo 750v with our partner Vodafone -- that product will come to the rest of the world. Same will be true with the Treo 680.
1:21PM: [Doing demo of the Treo 680] This is for featurephone upgraders: we know this is the ideal formfactor for a phone of this class.
1:22PM: [Running down features] Support for Word, Excel, PowerPoint and PDF files, 64MB of RAM, VGA camera, Bluetooth and infrared. What's unique? Brand new phone application and UI. Full user guide on the device. Includes wired car kit application [have to buy a kit, of course]. Hold launcher key to get "most recently used applications." New five tab home screen. Simplified favorites view. Integrated contacts, built directly into the phone application. Active call thumbnails. Easy multiway conference calls. VersaMail 3.5, now includes Exchange contacts sync. Improved addressing. AutoSync any combo of mail, calendar, contacts. Includes Docs To Go Professional v8.0 for Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and PDF files.
1:24PM: Multimedia: new pictures and videos applications, add music to slideshow, save a picture as contact directly from album. Pocket Tunes comes included. Voice memo application.
1:25PM: Streaming media: supports both audio and video, WMA and WMV support. Quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE, lacks antenna (finally). Moved SD memory card slot to the side (madness!).
1:26PM: Partner demos: Yahoo! Music, Six Apart (for blogging), Google Maps. You get 30 days of Yahoo Music Unlimited with purchase.
1:27PM: There's a mobile version of TypePad. Now they're showing off Google Maps for Treo -- traffic info included (sweet).
1:28PM: Color us impressed: Google Maps on this thing is pretty hot.
1:30PM: [Demo is over, back to the overview stuff] We're going after the "mobile accomplisher" market. Nine times the size of the mobile professional market. Here's that 680 customer, hasn't purchased a Treo or any kind of smartphone before. There are other things that smartphones give you access to beyond email and calendar...
1:32PM: We've doing a new advertising campaign in partnership with Yahoo, eBay, and Google to highlight these new features. We've improved the browser so that it caches these pages and is faster at delivering content.
1:34PM: We hope all this will make the Treo 680 more relevant to more people around the world. That's our announcement, any questions?
1:35PM: Q: Does smaller battery compromise battery life? A: No, we did not want to compromise a full day of usage.
1:36PM: Q: Will this support Palm WiFi card? A: No, it will not (sound of 1,000 fanboys groaning).
1:37PM: Q: Any plans to introduce Skype or work with them? A: Not on this device. And we have no plans to work with Skype. (Love for eBay, but no love for Skype...hmm).
1:38PM: Q: Any plans for a Windows Mobile version? A: We just launched 750v which has similar form factor.
1:40PM: Q: Price? A: Because each carrier sets pricing, we can't definitively say right now, but it will be competitive.
Looks like that's it folks. Check back in a few, and we should have some pictures up -- and maybe we can even sweet talk our way into manhandling one of these new Treos.