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Palm hints at new Touchstone Product Line, Inductive data transferring?

After watching a 45 minute long Palm Pre demo video from Myriam over at tnkgrl, an interesting tidbit slipped out from a marketing manager at Palm. 

"The Touchstone is the name of a entire line of products. This is the first Touchtone product in that family. This is the charging dock."

What other Touchstone accessories can we be looking forward to here? First off, I'm thinking there must be more features to the "Palm Pre Touchstone back cover" than just for charging. As of now, we know that the Touchstone back cover has these magnets that hold the Pre in place and align it with the Touchstone for charging. The only other features it might hold is the ability to send and receive data with inductive coupling technology via the Touchstone back cover. If this is true, it's definitely going to open up a world of new possibilities for hardware and accessories. Hmm, I wonder what else they're hiding...

Here're a few accessories/things I can think of right now:

1) You know those stereo speakers where you plug the iPod/iPhone in and leave it there? For the Pre, you just leave it on top of these made for pre stereo speakers.

2) Touchstone USB dock, where you have this Touchstone charging dock lookalike. And basically have it plugged into your computer's usb hub which acts as the connection between the Pre and your PC. 

3) Have your Pre touch back to back with another pre, where it will transfer contact info and other data.

4) Walk into a Sprint store and place your Pre on this table, where it will give the Sprint reps some useful info to help better serve you.

Let your imagination run wild!

[Thanks, Anonymous tipster]

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Reader Comments (7)

Palm were prolly trying to hide this fact and avoid it leaking out. So if the iphone 3 copys Palm and has wireless charging too, it won't have the data in and out capability.

April 12, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjorge7

that it, im ditching my iphone!

April 12, 2009 | Unregistered Commentereskimo fam

Full size keyboard? Printing? Backup? Mass media? Media player control? Automated house control (lighting, security etc)? If it has data capabilities, all these things are possible, it's just up to developers to make it happen. You can also get into stuff like blood pressure and pedometer devices... Then again, most of this is possible using bluetooth, so perhaps the Touchstone back isn't necessary to make these things happen.

What about a Touchstone vehicle charger? Would need to have some better support than the desktop charger's magnets, but it could easily slip into a holster, like many GPS units.

April 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMike

"the ability to send and receive data with inductive coupling technology"

Umm you are really missing the point here, you would not use inductive tech to transmit data EVER, we already have totally wireless data transmission called Bluetooth or Wifi why invent a new slower method that relies on you setting the phone on the coupler, a bluetooth transmitter would cost $10 to add to the coupler. Just have a sensor that activates the bluetooth when you put the phone on the coupler.

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterD'oh

When they say touchstone is a range they mean other versions for say a car or maybe even versions for other phones with replacement batteries.

"the ability to send and receive data with inductive coupling technology"

This comment makes me want to cry a little bit don't you understand how they make radiowaves ? you know what wirelessly tranmits data across wifi, bluetooth hell even your TV signals ? You need some 4th grade science books to read before you post anymore "technical" information.

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterYou need KNOWLEDGE

It already has something much better than indcutive data connections on the spec sheet, its called WiFi. The only reason we need inductive technology is for charging. The magnets are to hold it in place. The only advance I can think of would be in its ability to sense and intellgently react to the fact its on the touch stone.

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCharlie M

3.) as said before, this makes little sense... this could be far more easily done via various wireless protocols. Plus, not every pre has the touchstone back, as far as I understand...

I really hope that the pre comes with wireless sync, like my zune =D

here's what I would really really really like to happen... though in all likelyhood it wouldn't; Palm licenses its touchstone system to other vendors, potentially giving palm control over a widespread data-transfer/charging system that would be implemented in a variety of products...

April 13, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRyhan Hassan

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