Take this one with a grain of salt, but there is a distinct possibly that Dell wants to purchase Palm so that they can bring a smartphone to the cellular market. This follows the recent news of Dell killing off their Axim PDA line, possibly moving away from standalone PDAs and into smartphones that combine the functionality of a personal organizer with the calling features of a cell phone.
Both sides of this story have refused to discuss the possible buyout at this point, but industry analyst Jack Gold said that “Dell was likely to introduce a smartphone later this year”, and purchasing the infrastructure in place at Palm would streamline the process considerably.
Before Dell can finish the deal, they’ll have to fend off other potential buyers. Earlier this month, there was a rumor floating around that Nokia was interested in buying Palm too.