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Handspring Introduces Visor Pro and Visor Neo

(September 18, 2001)
Handspring, Inc. introduced two additions to its Visor family of handheld computers, Visor Pro and Visor Neo. Visor Pro is a rechargeable, expandable handheld with 16MB of memory - twice the storage capacity of other Palm OS handhelds, and is available for U.S. $299. Fifty percent faster than Visor Deluxe, Visor Neo is Handspring's new entry-level, high performance Visor in bright, colorful casings at a great value price of U.S. $199. Both of the new models feature the Springboard expansion slot, to take advantage of the many additional capabilities offered by Springboard modules. In a separate announcement, Handspring disclosed that the company is adding the popular eyemodule2 digital camera to its Springboard module product line.

"We designed Visor Pro to deliver the capacity and performance power users and business professionals need. Visor Neo is a great introductory product for students, young professionals and first-time handheld owners, yet is fully expandable and runs as fast as our high-end products," said Joe Sipher, vice president of product marketing for Handspring. "With more than 60 Springboard modules now available, people can easily customize Visor Pro and Visor Neo for applications such as voice and data communications with Handspring's VisorPhone, wireless Ethernet connectivity with Xircom's SpringPort module, or digital imaging with Handspring's eyemodule2 digital camera."


Visor Pro and Visor Neo

With 16MB of memory and a Dragonball VZ processor, Visor Pro is a fast and powerful handheld computer with incredible storage capacity for business and personal applications, such as large multimedia files, databases, company documents, and digital images. Available in silver for a conservative yet stylish look, Visor Pro has a rechargeable lithium ion battery that charges right in the cradle. Certain Springboard modules may also be recharged by the cradle when inserted into Visor Pro's Springboard expansion slot. The Silent Alarm features a blinking LED, which is helpful for settings where an audible alarm might disturb others.

Visor Neo is Handspring's new entry-level, high performance Visor that is 50 percent faster than Visor Deluxe. It comes in a choice of three distinctive new colors: smoke, red and blue. It has the same Dragonball VZ processor as the high-end Visors and 8MB of memory and runs on two AAA alkaline batteries. Visor Neo is ideal for first time buyers and those looking to upgrade from a 2MB or older handheld computer. Both Visor Pro and Visor Neo are immediately available in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Asia. Colors, models, pricing and availability may vary in each country.

Handspring Visor Pro and Visor Neo use the fastest Palm OS processor, the Motorola Dragonball VZ, providing instant access to information. It is ideal for memory-intensive applications, such as searching large databases and playing games. Visor Pro and Visor Neo have backlit monochrome screens, supporting 4-bit grayscale (16 shades of gray) with sharp, crisp graphics. Both also offer the Fast Lookup feature, first introduced with Visor Edge, so that people can access contact information more quickly and with one hand using the application buttons instead of the stylus. Visor Pro and Visor Neo include all the basic features of the Visor line of products, such as enhanced applications, USB support, and Mac OS compatibility out of the box.

Visor Pro and Visor Neo feature the Springboard plug-and-play expansion slot. Unlike most other handheld expansion technologies, there are many Springboard solutions already available that bring a wide variety of capabilities to the Visor family. A few examples of the more than 60 Springboard modules include the Xircom SpringPort Wireless Ethernet module, the Audible Advisor that offers spoken content from newspapers, books and many other sources, the Magellan GPS Companion, Margi System's Presenter-to-Go that brings presentation capabilities to Visor handhelds, and the Innogear MiniJam MP3 player. Two Springboard modules enable Compact Flash and SmartMedia cards to be used in the Springboard slot, and similar modules for Secure Digital and Memory Stick will be introduced later this year. All Springboard modules are truly plug-and-play and immediately work without installing external drivers or software.

Handspring eyemodule2 and 16MB Backup Module

The eyemodule2 digital camera and the 16MB Backup module are the latest additions to Handspring's line of Springboard modules. Available for U.S. $199, eyemodule2 provides full VGA resolution imaging capabilities and even mini-movies. Handspring is distributing and branding eyemodule2, designed by IDEO. Handspring also introduced today a new 16MB Backup module for Visor Pro, which allows people to backup all of the data on a Visor with one touch. If data in a Visor is lost, the Backup module will restore the entire memory of the handheld. This module is especially convenient for mobile users with limited access to their desktop computers to synchronize. It is available for U.S. $59.99.

New Accessories

New accessories introduced include a Visor belt clip holster, a stylus three-pack, and a number of new cases from InCase Designs that hold Visors and Springboard modules. The new Reversible case provides padded protection inside and out and is available in gray or gray on the outside and orange on the inside. A Visor and a few Springboard modules fit into the Mesh module case, which is available in two color choices, gray or gray on the outside and orange on the inside. The Flex module case, offered in gray, can carry and organize both small and larger-sized Springboard modules. A flexible center pocket provides room for a Visor and smaller Springboard modules or a few larger Springboard modules, and it also has space for other items too, such as earphones, extra styli, and batteries. The Folio module case, also available in gray, accommodates a Visor, a folding keyboard, and a few Springboard modules, with extra pockets for credit cards, cash, and other essentials. It features a case grip that holds the Visor securely in place while keeping the Springboard expansion slot accessible. All of the new accessories can be purchased at www.handspring.com.

Handspring is a leading innovator in the handheld computing industry. The company develops, manufactures and markets a family of expandable handheld computers for a broad range of markets and customers. Founded in 1998, Handspring's flagship technology is the Springboard platform, which provides a simple and easy method for hardware and software expansion. Today Handspring sells its Visor line of handheld computers, along with a line of Springboard expansion modules and accessories, at Handspring.com and through select Internet and retail partners in the United States, Asia, Canada, the Middle East and Europe.


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