Handspring losses continue over holidays

Handheld device maker Handspring Inc. beat Wall Street's expectations in its second fiscal quarter ended Dec. 29, but a weak holiday upturn in sales couldn't stave off continued losses.

Mountain View, California-based Handspring posted US$70.5 million in revenue for the quarter, marking a 15 percent sequential jump over the previous quarter's revenue of $61.4 million, according to a statement. However, the company saw revenue drop significantly from the previous year's second-quarter total of $115.6 million.

Handspring posted a net loss of $14.4 million this quarter, which translates into a loss of $0.12 per share. These figures exclude charges related to the amortization of deferred stock compensation and other intangibles. Analysts polled by Thomson Financial/First Call had pegged Handspring to lose $0.14 per share for the period.

Including the charges, Handspring lost $19.8 million in the quarter, for a loss of $0.16 per share.

The company profited from a number of large corporate deals in the quarter, according to the statement.

Handspring has just started to deliver its Treo family of handheld devices that combine the functions of a PDA (personal digital assistant) with those of a cell phone. Handspring expects to announce new carrier and distribution partners for this product in the coming quarter, according to the statement. One of those deals was announced Tuesday. Shares of Handspring (Nasdaq: HAND) rose 1 percent Tuesday to close at $7.78.

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Ashlee Vance

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