Wireless carrier Sprint PCS and personal digital assistant maker Palm will market and sell wireless products for handhelds using the Palm operating system platform, they said yesterday.

Sprint PCS - the personal communications systems division of Sprint and Palm will offer a co-branded portal to Palm users that connect to Sprint's PCS Wireless Web network. The CDMA (code division multiple access) connection will enable subscribers to browse Web sites optimized for wireless surfing, as well as retrieve email.

Handheld adaptor Initially, customers will be able to connect Palm handhelds to a Sprint PCS Internet-ready phone. A kit, including a data cable, a Palm handheld adaptor, a CD-ROM and a user's guide, is expected to be available through Sprint PCS and online at Palm's Web site in early 2001.

Multiple wireless connectivity options will be available, according to the release. Applications and hardware devices using the Sprint PCS wireless network will be introduced throughout 2001. A CDMA wireless modem for Palm handhelds is expected to be available mid-year in 2001. Sprint also intends to distribute Palm OS-based smartphones that integrate voice and data.

This service will be available to North American customers only initially, but industry rumour suggests that Palm is developing similar relationships with other partners worldwide.