Palm Makes Grand Gestures to Pre Open Source Developers: Free as in Freedom or Desperation?

Hmm… The Free Software movement founder, Richard Stallman, makes the distinction between “free as in freedom” and “free as in beer” when talking about Free Software (he doesn’t like the label “Open Source”). So, what is Palm up to with this?

Palm: Free Apps For The Web, Free Development For Open Source, And Free Phones! (TechCrunch)

– Apps can be distributed over the web through a direct URL (web address)
– Palm will NOT review apps
– Palm will waive the $99 yearly fee for Open Source apps
– Palm will share its analytical data with developers (unlike Apple)

This all sounds like good news for Pre developers. And, it sounds like a friendly gesture to Open Source developers (sorry, Mr. S.) that is especially appropriate given the Pre’s webOS Linux roots. But, would Palm have made such grand gestures if the Pre were selling in large numbers? Or, is this a desperate attempt to build an app library?

Publish date: October 6, 2009 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT