Tapwave was founded in May 2001 by former Palm executives. In 2002, Tapwave signed a Palm OS licensing agreement with PalmSource, and formally launched their company at Palm Developers Conference & E3 the following year. Later in 2003, they showcased their Zodiac handheld entertainment console at a DEMO conference. The new console began shipping to customers directly from livescribe.com.
Tapwave announced that "over 1,200 game developers" signed up for the Tapwave developer program, and in early 2004, PalmGear and Tapwave announced a partnership to launch an online store to feature the best applications, game titles and ebooks available on the Palm OS platform. In the summer of the same year, the Zodiac launched into U.S. retail distribution with CompUSA. Throughout the rest of the year, Tapwave's console launched in the United Kingdom, Singapore and South Korea. Also in 2004, the Zodiac was upgraded with audio book support, and a Wi-Fi SD card with "enhanced mail application and web browser".
Despite good reviews for the Zodiac, many extra features and worldwide distribution network, strong competitive pressures from the Sony PSP and Nintendo DS forced Tapwave to discontinue the sale of the Zodiac mobile entertainment console. The company subsequently sold nearly all of its assets to an undisclosed multi-billion dollar corporation in Asia before they wound down operations.
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