Features and Benefits  
Why Palm OS?  
Palm OS Garnet  
Palm OS Cobalt 6.1  
Palm OS Cobalt
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Palm OS Cobalt, version 6.1 focuses on enabling faster and more efficient development of smartphones and integrated wireless (WiFi/Bluetooth) handhelds.

Palm OS Cobalt Overview

This new release builds on the successful introduction of Palm OS Cobalt. Palm OS Cobalt is a modern operating system designed from the ground up to enable new classes of smartphones and other wireless devices while maintaining the legendary, “ease of use” that users expect.

Palm OS Cobalt, version 6.1 is available to PalmSource licensees as a Product Development Kit (PDK). For Palm OS Ready Partners, it is available as a Silicon Porting Kit (SPK); and for third party developers, it is available as a new set of APIs, tools, and documentation in a Software Development Kit (SDK).

As a highly modular and scalable implementation, Palm OS Cobalt, version 6.1 offers more standard telephony support, and new usability features as well as more standard integration of wireless technologies like Bluetooth and WiFi.

Palm OS Cobalt Highlights

  • 32-bit fully ARM™-native OS
  • Scalable, modular, standards-based architecture
  • Fully multithreading and multitasking operating system
  • Unified, STREAMS-based communications architecture
  • Standard high-density display support for multiple screen configurations
  • Extensible multimedia framework to ease development of next-generation applications
  • Improved synchronization architecture
  • An expanded set of development tools for ARM-native application development PACE (Palm Application Compatibility Environment) to provide backwards compatibility with previous Palm OS versions

Version 6.1 Product Details


  • ARM v5T architecture support targeting - ARM9 Core 200MHz+ microprocessors
  • Support for NOR and NAND ROM modules
  • Reference hardware:
    • Application Module: Freescale™ i.MX21ADS development board
    • Phone Module: CMCS GSM/GPRS
    • NAND: M-Systems Mobile DiskOnChip™ (MDOC)

Locale Support

  • Expanded localization support; The Palm OS, PIM applications and Palm OS Desktop support English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Japanese as well as Simplified Chinese.

Enhanced Telephony

  • GPRS support, GPRS API
  • Multiple PDP context support
  • SAT support
  • Standard GSM 07.10 MUX
  • Improved Call Management
  • Interruptible HotSync® feature
  • "No Backup Battery" Support
    • Automatic Database Backup & Restore
    • Handles battery removal and low power

Display & User Interface

    • New user interface widgets (buttons, form titles, lists, scroll bars, sliders, pick lists, text boxes, check boxes, push buttons)
    • Standard approach to 5-way based, one-handed navigation
    • Support for new high-resolution, QVGA, QVGA (240x240), 320x320, HVGA and VGA displays at up to 32bpp color depth
    • New support for translucent window effects
    • New dithering and general color modulation rendering features
    • New support for portrait and landscape orientations (with or without hardware assist)
    • New support for hardware graphics accelerators
    • Scalable system fonts including

TrueType Latin, Japanese and Chinese fonts

  • Customizable and movable Status Bar

Memory Requirements

  • Phone configuration ("No Backup Battery")
  • 32MB SDRAM + 32MB NAND Flash
  • PDA configuration* 32MB SDRAM + 16MB NOR ROM

* VGA configurations will require additional RAM


  • Personal Information Management (PIM) applications that support the new user interface (UI) elements as well as 5-way based, one-handed navigation (Address Book, Date Book, To Do List, Memo Pad)
  • System Applications: Launcher, Preferences (new), and Welcome
  • Other Applications: Calculator, Card Info, SMS
  • Sample Applications: Media Player, Phone Pad, GPRS Counters (new)

Application Highlights

  • Enhanced PIM applications with new UI elements and 5-way navigation support
  • Tab-based UI
  • 255 categories, multiple categories per record
  • Schema-driven UI import/export feature to easily share records (both 68K & ARM native)
  • Microsoft Outlook® compatible fields

Input Methods

  • Input Method framework; Licensees can also develop and integrate custom solutions other than Graffiti® 2 and standard keyboard layouts
  • Dynamic Input Area, Onscreen Input Area and keyboard included as standard

Desktop and Synchronization

  • Palm OS Desktop 6.1 application (Microsoft Windows® only)
  • HotSync® Exchange that allows PC files in native formats (JPEG, Word, Excel) to be dragged and dropped into the Install Tool and then transferred to the device on the next HotSync

Communications & Networking

  • Pluggable, industry standard, STREAMS-based framework
  • Multiple communications tasks can run simultaneously
  • Secure I/O framework for driver installation
  • Standard connection application for easy setup and configuration of Internet connections via GPRS, Bluetooth, WiFi, serial, modem
  • Drivers included:
    • RS-232 serial
    • IrDA
    • USB, USB 1.1 Slave and new support for USB On the Go (master/slave)
    • SD and MMC expansion card
    • SDIO card support for adding peripherals such as wireless cards, cameras, or other devices
  • Networking Protocols supported:
    • TCP/UDP/IP
    • IPv4, IPv6
    • PPP
    • OBEX
    • Ethernet (for writing 802.11 drivers)


  • Bluetooth 1.2 stack
  • Supported profiles: Generic Access Profile, Serial Port Profile, Dialup Networking Profile - Terminal and Gateway role (new), LAN Access Profile, Service Discovery Application Profile, Generic Object Exchange Profile, Object Push Profile, Headset Profile (new), Hands-free Profile (new), PAN - PANU and GN roles (new)
  • Enhanced Bluetooth application; Manages Bluetooth services (new), setup, discovery, pairing with improved UI
  • "Automatic" mode (new): activates Bluetooth on demand, then turns it off automatically.
  • Limited discoverability: 3 minutes (new)
  • HCI BCSP transport


  • 802.11 support
  • Uses the Connection Manager plug-in for easier user configuration
  • Support for WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) security
  • Support for third-party WPA (Wi-Fi Protected Access) solutions

Connection Manager

  • Improved, simplified user configurations plug-in framework for adding new communications services


  • Extensible programming framework for creating advanced multimedia applications supports the following features:
    • Audio playback of up to 16 streams, recording of a single stream
    • Audio record mono/stereo, 8/16-bit, arbitrary sample rates
    • Sound Manager for mixing sound sources
    • Background playback
    • Video playback
    • APIs for access to audio/video hardware
    • Available codecs include: MP3, MPEG-4, MPEG-1, AAC, H.263, AMR, Ogg

Security Framework

  • Enhanced privacy and protection services through native encryption, certificate management, and authentication/authorization services Cryptographic Provider Management (CPM)
    • RC4 for encryption/decryption
    • SHA-1 hashing
    • Signature verification using RSAVerify
    • DES/MD5 provider with DES-ECB, DES-CBC, 3DES, MD5 SSL2, SSL3 (shared library available to all applications)
  • Certificate Management APIs
  • Support for X.509v3 Certificates