Palm will be making its return later this year with a Verizon-only smartphone. It may not be official yet, but the Android device just started making appearances in various databases that suggest an announcement isn’t so far off.
The upcoming product, labeled as the PVG100, made stops at the FCC and Wi-Fi Alliance recently.
It looks like this will be a mid-range or entry-level device. Android 8.1 Oreo is on-board, but the 2.4GHz frequency band stands alone. The 5GHz frequency band usually gets included on advanced devices to strengthen Wi-Fi signals.
Aside from revealing its model number, the official documents tell us Palm Ventures Group is leading its development. Palm Ventures Group, though, isn’t a standalone company. The name was established a few years ago by TCL after it acquired the rights to the Palm brand from HP. Earlier this year, it leaked that TCL is planning to release its Palm-branded device for Verizon in the second half of 2018.
Verizon was the exclusive carrier for select Palm devices in the past. It’s unclear if TCL has talked with other carriers; however, its other products are mostly sold directly and unlocked.
TCL already makes Alcatel- and BlackBerry-branded devices. Rather than using its own name, the Chinese company picks up licenses from more well-known brands. There was a period when Palm was popular in the mobile industry, so reviving this brand could create some widespread buzz.
Behind closed doors, the PVG100 might be known as something else. But the model number is all we have to work with right now. Expect TCL and Palm Ventures Group to sell the PVG100 under a completely different name that’s much more consumer-friendly.
The clock is ticking for TCL, but the PVG100 could be scheduled for a global debut during the next trade show. IFA 2018, which takes place in Berlin, kicks off on August 31. If the Palm brand makes a comeback then, it might just be the biggest story of the week.