Wall Street applauds changing of the guard at Palm

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On Wednesday, Palm, makers of the new Palm Pre, announced it would replace CEO Ed Colligan with Jon Rubenstein, a former Apple executive who will be charged with revitalizing the California-based tech company. Today, the news sent Palm shares from 6.7 percent to $12.79 in recent trading, according to The Wall Street Journal.

"We think Palm investors should view this transition as a positive," wrote analysts at JPMorgan, the Journal reported. "We believe Mr. Rubinstein has been the guiding force behind the Palm Pre and the webOS."

In January, Palm, the mobile device powerhouse of the 90s, unveiled the Pre at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. The new device, which went on sale last weekend, boasts a touchscreen, hidden QWERTY keyboard, and a new operating system and syncing scheme.

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The Pre has been greeted warmly by critics, but the new Palm – despite its sleek hardware – may not be enough to bring Palm back into the vanguard. The smart phone market is just too cluttered, and the Pre doesn't have the same robust applications ecosystem as the iPhone.

On Monday, a strong initial showing by the Pre was blotted out by some other tech news: the unveiling of the cheaper and faster iPhone 3GS.

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