We’re impressed that Palm’s sexy new webOS smartphone platform and Pre gadget is mainstream enough news for Yahoo’s (YHOO) extremely popular homepage. But Yahoo might want to study up on its gadget history.
In the wee hours of this morning, the site called the Pre Palm’s “first touchscreen cell phone.” (See screenshot below.)
That’s a bit of an insult: Palm practically invented the touchscreen mobile phone with the Treo line — which it acquired by buying Handspring in 2003.
The Treo — like the popular 650, shown above — was one of the world’s pioneering smartphones for several years, until it recently lost much of its market share to newer players like BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIMM) and Apple (AAPL).
Lately Palm (PALM) has been selling a smaller, cheaper touchscreen phone called the Centro, too, which has found a fairly big audience but has never made any money for the company. Which is why the new Pre is so important — it’s not only a technical advancement, but potentially Palm’s ticket back to profitability.
But with Palm’s stock price down some 75% since early 2006, perhaps CEO Ed Colligan and Palm shareholders would like to forget about the Treo and Centro, too.