It's been a rough month or so for Palm, as the only thing keeping the company's tanking stock price from falling completely into the gutter are buyout rumors -- RIM here, HTC there, even Lenovo, for some crazy reason. But that's apparently not enough to get CEO Jon Rubinstein down: he just sat down with Fortune for a remarkably candid chat, saying that although his company hasn't done so well, he still thinks there's potential -- and that he obviously wishes some things had gone better. The big one? The Verizon launch -- and Jon thinks that if the Droid and Pre had had their launch dates flipped, the Pre would have done better.
One of the analysts on our earnings call asked if we had launched when Droid launched, and Droid launched when [we] launched at Verizon, would the story have been opposite? I said I think we have a better product than Droid, and customers would have been happier with it.
It's certainly an interesting thought experiment, but we've always said that the Pre's marketing had a lot to do with its failure on Big Red as well -- and Palm apparently agrees, since it's fired its ad agency and Jon told Fortune that Verizon's changing their ads as well. As for the buyout rumors? Well, obviously Jon didn't say much, but it sounds like he's not too interested -- although that can always change if the right suitor comes to the table . We'll see if Ruby actually manages to turn things around -- we've got some ideas on how to make that happen. Hit the source link for the full interview.

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Palm's Jon Rubinstein: 'I think we have a better product than Droid'