Palm’s new Pre smartphone has been slammed by critics for its dearth of apps. But San Mateo, Calif.-based MobiHand and MotionApps say they have a solution: emulated versions of older Palm software.
MotionApps has built software that allows older apps based on the Palm OS to run on the new operating system. It’s called the MotionApps Classic Palm OS emulator, and it can run the older apps on the Pre faster than they originally ran, since the Pre is more powerful. The software costs $29.99.
More importantly, the company also launched an app store today, together with MobiHand. It’s called the MobiHand Classic App Store, and it offers some 150 Palm OS apps that will run on the Palm Pre, including apps related to games, entertainment, and personal productivity. Titles include Aces Texas Hold’em, Bejeweled, BlackJack Deluxe, Agendus, and SplashID. Some apps are free, while many are paid.
Steve Howard, president and chief executive of MobiHand, said more apps would follow, since there is a catalog of some 6,000 Palm apps, many of which could be adapted to run on the Pre.
The site will include a community forum for classic Palm fans. Those fans can volunteer to approve apps in a kind of Wiki process.
San Francisco-based MotionApps secured a license from Palm for the Palm OS. Without that, it would have been extremely difficult to build an emulator.