Mobile OS

Five reasons why the Palm Pre will be a homerun

Palm has done a platform reboot with its new webOS and the company is swinging for the fences with its first webOS device, the Palm Pre. So will Palm strike out or hit it out of the park? Here are five reasons why I expect it to be a homerun.

Palm has done a platform reboot with its new webOS and the company is swinging for the fences with its first webOS device, the Palm Pre. So will Palm strike out or hit it out of the park? Here are five reasons why I expect it to be a homerun.

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Palm deserves credit for making a bold move to completely reboot its mobile operating system with the webOS. It also brought in hardware guru Jon Rubinstein from Apple to help design a breakthrough smartphone to jumpstart Palm's position in the market.

Make no mistake about it, Palm has bet the company on the Palm Pre smartphone and the new webOS that powers it. If there are any unexpected problems with the Pre and it falls short of sales expectations when it launches on June 6, it would be financially and morally devastating to Palm.

However, I doubt that will happen. I expect the Pre to be a big hit, and here are the top five reasons why:

5. Palm knows how to build an ecosystem

With all of the momentum that is building around the iPhone as an application platform, Palm has a lot of ground to make up (and, for that matter, so do BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, Android, and Symbian). The thing Palm has going for it is that it knows how to build an ecosystem around its products. It did it before with the original Palm Pilot.

In fact, before the runaway growth of the iPhone App Store, the Palm OS still had arguably the widest collection of third party applications for any smartphone. Most of those apps were a legacy from the Palm Pilot, but many of them were still among the best you could find for a smartphone. Palm's new webOS will even include an emulator that will run classic Palm OS apps. But, we should also expect lots of flashy, new webOS applications because the webOS platform is friendly to programmers, and working with third-party developers is baked into Palm's DNA.

4. The carriers want an iPhone competitor

Sprint has a deal with Palm to be the exclusive U.S. carrier for the Pre through the end of 2009. Verizon has already announced that it plans to start carrying the Pre at the beginning of 2010 and AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson said that he wants the Pre on AT&T. So, within a year, the Pre will likely be available on all of the top three U.S. carriers, plus a GSM version of the smartphone will likely be spreading across the globe by then.

Many of these carriers covet the Palm Pre because the iPhone, with its exclusive carrier deals in various countries, has become a magnet drawing customers away from current carriers to the iPhone's carrier (AT&T in the U.S.). Since the Pre looks like that first smartphone that can stand toe-to-toe with the iPhone technologically, it's very likely that many of the non-iPhone carriers that offer the Pre will market it with heavy promotions that will drive sales.

3. The webOS will be a strong development platform

Applications for Palm's new webOS are built with HTML, Javascript, and CSS, which are the standard languages for today's Web developers. Comparatively, iPhone apps are built in Objective C and Android apps are built with Java.  That gives iPhone and Android a few more powerful tools to work with, but it also means that webOS will natively be more Web-savvy and will be faster and easier for developing apps.

The challenge is that Palm has so far limited access to the Palm Mojo software development kit (SDK) to a select group of partners. If Palm is going to compete with the iPhone and its application juggernaut it's going to have to open up its new SDK to the wider world as soon as possible.

2. Touchscreen + Qwerty

Qwerty devices such as the BlackBerry Curve, the Nokia E71, and Samsung Blackjack are all excellent email and data entry devices, but they are not very useful for Web browsing or reading a lot of text. Conversely, full touchscreen devices such as the iPhone, the Google G1, and the BlackBerry Storm are all excellent for Web browsing and reading text, but their keyboards make them less useful for typing emails and other kinds of data entry.

So the ultimate device should combine a touchscreen and a qwerty keyboard, right? The G1 makes a noble attempt, but it's flip-down keyboard is awkward and not very effective. The Palm Pre represents the first effective fusion of the two, although it's not perfect either. The Pre keyboard is even a little smaller than the BlackBerry Curve, so it will be tough for people with large fingers to use. Nevertheless, it's the first smartphone to effectively combine a full touchscreen with an effective qwerty thumboard. Other devices will likely follow its lead.

1. It is the first true multi-tasking smartphone

The most revolutionary part of the Palm Pre is its multi-tasking functionality. While all of the Pre's current smartphone competitors have very limited multi-tasking, the Pre provides the computing power for full multi-tasking and does it in an elegant interface that makes it easy to flip through apps and get real-time alerts on-screen.

In the webOS, applications appear as a deck of cards that you can flip through with the swipe of a finger. Each app is one card and can be organized, managed, and closed using touchscreen gestures. The webOS also offers on-screen alerts that pop up along the bottom of the screen. For example, while typing an email, you might be an IM message and have a meeting alert from your calendar. Both items would appear along the bottom of the screen and a simple tap would take you into either application.

This makes the Palm Pre feel much more like the computing experience that all of us are used to on a desktop or laptop PC, and that's the Palm Pre's biggest contribution, and it's biggest draw.

For more insights on Palm Pre, iPhone, and other tech topics, follow my Twitter stream at twitter.com/jasonhiner

Bottom line

The Palm Pre will be the next big step forward for the smartphone as a computing device. BlackBerry created the smartphone category in the early part of this decade with the first thumboard, Palm briefly helped reinvent the smartphone with the Treo and its phone/email synergy, and then the iPhone brought the full Web and application experience to the smartphone. Now, the Palm Pre brings true multi-tasking to the smartphone. That, combined with current market forces and Palm's mobile DNA, will make the Pre one of tech's biggest success stories of 2009.

UPDATED:

Not everyone agrees that the Pre will hit it out of the park. Here are two alternative viewpoints to consider:

Also, the first product reviews of the Palm Pre have arrived. These actually tend to fall in line with my assessment of the Pre. Take a look:

About

Jason Hiner is the Global Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Global Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He is an award-winning journalist who writes about the people, products, and ideas that are revolutionizing the ways we live and work in the 21st century.

100 comments
Garrettcan
Garrettcan

Palm Pre still a unknown stuff. A homerun? Some of you are so optimize. http://www.111download.com

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I too so optimize Pre Palm unknown still stuff for humeruns. Guys these get don't just you.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Anyone else smelling fresh fried spam off that one?

JButenh125
JButenh125

I have a Life Drive that is useless with Vista so I doubt I will buy any thing from Palm again.

JButenh125
JButenh125

I have a Life Drive that is useless with Vista so I doubt that I will buy anything from Palm again.

don.chambers
don.chambers

You may have forgotten the biggest reason why Palm will struggle - why should I have to change carriers to use a Palm Pre? Sprints coverage in my area of So Cal is spotty at best. If the Palm Pre had been offered at Verizon , I would have jumped (I have the Treo 700P). But the point is, why the devil should I have to change carriers to get a decent phone? Stupid, stupid, stupid!

Hazydave
Hazydave

The carriers aren't stupid... ever since Motorola had its run of "lifestyle" phones, like the RAZR, that became objects of desire, the wireless companies have pursued exclusive deals. I'm in a similar boat... I would consider either the Palm Pre or an Android phone, if only I could get it on Verizon. Currently, where I live, T-Mobile and Sprint don't work outside my house, while I can sometimes get Verizon in the cellar. I have no love for Verizon the company, but if I can't get the signal, the coolest phone in the world is useless as a phone (or internet device). Obviously, the carriers and hardware vendors are making the decision they feel is best for themselves. The Pre being exclusive to Sprint keeps me from being a Pre customer, but it potentially buys Sprint a bunch of new customers... smart for them, sure. Of course, if it fails, Palm is hurt, not Sprint.... again, smart on Sprint's part. Of course, these exclusive deals are also smart for the hardware companies, as they're typically getting unusual kickbacks. When Verizon sells you a generic phone, there's really no continued relationship between you and Nokia or Samsung or Motorola or whoever made that phone. When Apple sells you the iPhone, you make them money. You're now their direct customer, on iTunes, potentially buying music, videos and apps. Oh, and yeah, that whole "Apple gets a percentage of AT&T's monthly fee" thing... that's got to be pretty sweet, too. Also explains why these things often run $100 a month to use.

Derek Schauland
Derek Schauland

I think there has been talk of the Pre going to ATT and Verizon by 2010 sometime... eventually it will be everywhere. Sprint just gets to be first with a rockin' phone for once.

enquiries
enquiries

the success will depend on the point Jason makes in 2: "will have to open up its SDK to the wider world as soon as possible." If lessons from history such as OS/2 and the Apple Macintosh are observed, then a closed, over-precious software development process will spell doom for this product, no matter how superior it is to competitors.

jkiernan
jkiernan

The iPhone is already a home run. Both Pre and Android are at the starting block and have a long way to go to even approach the iPhone's success. If I were to place a wager on Android vs. Pre, I would bet on Google. Palm has already blown a huge lead to Apple in the smartphone arena and will prove to be inept with the Pre as well. Palm smacks of desperation, and this is a make-or-break product for them. If I was in the market for a new phone, Android's open standards and Google's clout clearly tip the scales for me.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

You are talking about the Smart Phone arena, i-phone is anything but a smart phone. It doesn't intergrate with any common platforms properly, doesn't read, open, create and send MS Doc's, COULDN'T even copy and past until later versions were released and it is out YEARS after all of these things have been available from others already. They simply looked at the popularity of SmartPhones for business and created a comsumer device to suit other users. It does nothing of any use by itself, the touch system is light years behind the competition and is only useful once you have bought third party apps to make it do SOMETHING anyway. i-Phones are NOT Smart Phones, not by any stretch of the imagiation, even Apples doesn't proclaim that much. It is a first party phone, no matter who writes apps, only those Apple excepts can be used. On other SMART PHONES, they can use third party apps that work within a Windows environment (for example), anyone can create and offer them, without the phone providers prior approval and admission into their store to buy it. Smartphones accept third party software installations, Apple is not one of them.

Womble
Womble

the existing iphone is not a truly global phone in any case, as it is not adaptable to the multitude of bands that are out ther. in addition it is reputed to be a poor RF performance device. What it does well is the java handling, wich is how a lot of web pages are built nowadays, so enjendering a good web experience. handling of email is ok and the fact is it makes users feel good about it Units that do well are not necessarily the technologically best devices, with all the bes gewgaws and things that go "Ping". it is the devices that make the user feel good about using them, with good online support from informed staff. look at the fact that people support products with very small user base, simlpy because the support makes them feel valued

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

And remember with Family Guy it is "Laugh and cry", not "f'in cry" :D

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

I was thinking it the whole time I was typing with the family guy in the background where the silhouette lowers

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

The new DeBeers slogan by Ron White.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

First of all, analogies to other Apple products show absolutely NOTHING of the capabilities or worthiness of the i-Toy, and neither does the toy itself. It is NOT a Smartphone, it isn't a matter of argument or perference, it siimply ISN'T a Smartphone and therefore does not dominate that market segment at all. SOME people that would benefit from a SmartPhone will but an i-Toy because it is trendy, in fact most people buying "i" anything, do so because of trends. Their music players suck wind, not even REASONABLE sound reproduction. Their Phone is a farce, it does nothing and is a proprietary format that is a bad business investment for most companies, when compared to the less expensive, and much more business capable smartphones. A Smartphone integrates with business apps, countless numbers of apps made by manythiord party vendors even with specific business applications. Seriously, what's SMART about a business device that can't integrate with common business databases? It is a TOY, don't fool yourself, no matter how many proprietary APPs Apple approves, the i-Toy will not be able to seamlessly integrate with the most common business applications that were written by MS. However, with an open ablity for third party developers to create and release such apps for SmartPhones, business couldn't be easier. On my HTC I can open, send, share ena dedit Power POint presentations, create edit and convert Word and Excell docs, I can create and edit PDF's. It has handwriting recogition for quick taking of notes in meetings or when ideas come to mind while travelling. Other deivces work, serve a purpose and offer a business solution. i-Toys are limited, restricted and don't do anything that is actually a benefit to busienss, beyond being a cool trendy toy to play with and get your email on. In teh future they will continue like US politicians to be purposely absolute opposites. This means they will never meet in teh middle and develop what is really needed but will force people to choose A or B; just as the PC dominates the MAC, whether it is better for some or not. As for your example of Panasonic, Sony, NAD, Bryston etc. You do realize they are in completely diffrerent market segments and are NOTHING at all like the BOSE exmple I cited. Sure Sony and Panasonic are mid-fi (not hi-fi)and each company specializes in a few product lines taht separate them from others. With Panasonic they are an excellent phone manufacturer. Sony is phenomenal for TV's. As for Bryston and NAD, they are high end, they are in a different league than mid-fi products all together. I'll forget your audio analogy though, as you clearly didn't know what you were talking about, and I won't use it to discount your other comments. The products you grouped were like saying, "Ford, Ferrari, Kia are all in the same boat." BOSE is unique in their marketign campaigns, they do not let retailers offer other product NEAR Bose products, yet alone compare the two. They build $35.00 displays to compliment their speakers in stores. They have never provided a freqeuncy reposnse graph, as they would never sell a sigle unit if people saw what little sound they actually reproduce. However it has been done by audiophiles and is available online from multiple sources, proving that spending $150 at Best Buy will do the trick just as well if not better. BOSE is pure scam, others may mask the decible drop on a frequency curve but it is always noted, just not focused on. Example: Paradigm: 20Hz-20kHz +-3db Energy: 20Hz-20kHz +-12db Both provide a similar overal response but only one offer that response on a nearly flat plane so that the frequencies are actually audible. BOSE doesn't even touch on that, they are 100% scam speakers and only suckers would buy them. Disclaimer: Bose has made some respectable speakers in their time, just not teh great Accoustimass system they retail at absurd prices. I have a manufacturer that provides an Acoustimass clone product, sounds better than teh BOse version and sells for $399.99 instead of $3500.00

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

.. yet, diamonds cost more than more rare stones. Thanks to Debeers marketing might, they sure are expensive for such a common chunk of rock.

Hazydave
Hazydave

I used to design computers for Commodore. We made the CPUs used in the Apple ][, produced more powerful computers in the 8-bit generation, and yet, Apple sold theirs for 4x-8x more, and generally had better software support from 3rd party developers. Enter the 32-bit generation... they had the Mac, black & white, 68000 based, 128K of memory, overloaded by graphics processing. Less that a year later, we had the Amiga, color, 68000 based, 256K of memory with expandability, hardware to accelerate graphics, multitasking OS, etc. And Apple ultimately won that, getting 2x-3x the money for generally lesser hardware. They convinced more 3rd party developers to build apps for their platform, and that ultimately mattered more than ANY advanced hardware chops. So don't rule Apple out for a minute. If you're comparing Bose to, well, anyone from Sony or Panasonic to someone like Bryston, NAD, Parasound, etc. they come up short. But audio is a closed component -- you buy it, you're done. Computers and Smart Phones are platforms. You buy something based at least in part not one what it does out of the box, but what it can do. Windows and the PC, the horrible mess they were, won the market because they attracted the applications (and to a large extent, they did that because of the clones). Apple is winning the Smart Phone market because of their base of applications. Sure, folks can whine about it not being a smart phone or a PDA, or about having to spend $5 to get what you think should be in the box, but most people don't care about any of these labels... they buy what's cool, and/or what gets the job done. As the applications base grows, they have a hard time looking to something with few or no applications. This is why I'd bet on Android as the only thing that's going to effectively compete against Apple. Sure, Apple's overpriced, AT&T's overpriced.. but people are buying these things en masse anyway. So Apple's next generation is the beneficiary of all that cash for development -- same reason Intel not only won the CISC wars, but beat RISC on price/performance as well. Android taps the one predictor of success Apple won't -- it'll be on a dozen different phones by the end of the year. It's ultimately the installed base that'll get you applications. If the phone you buy has everything you'll ever need, great, but that's not really a smart phone -- it's not really an applications platform. It's in the same class as my old RAZR, just perhaps with more built-ins. Applications will ultimately drive the smart phone market, and they'll be based largely on who's got the market. Palm may have a chance here, but they've screwed up good things before.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Is the support system there to inform people that it is not just a pretty brick and that if you buy some apps you can actually do somethign useful? LOL Either way, this is NOT by any means a SmartPhone, it simply does not fit the requirements of a SmartPhone. As far as useability, my HTC surfs super fast, pages display properly (FLASH, JAVA Eetc.)just as with a desktop runnign IE8 or FF etc. No difference, just a smaller screen of course. I've never needed actual 'tech ' support on mine, but whenever new software releases are available (For FREE) teh online community has offered tonnes of info and there is endless amounts of support to be found. So I truly don't buy the assertion that it is better for surfing and has great support, mine surfs fine and support is more than plentiful. PLUS software is mainly free, with the exception of some database programs etc. that the vendors sell (BY THEMSELVES). There is NOTHING appealign about i=Phones that would make me even consider moving from HTC, NOTHING. i-Phone can't even keep up with the most basic user friendly features that HTC offers. Even when you buy apps for i-phone, it STILL doesn't measure up against the FREE features included with HTC's smartphones. Smartphone packages are also CHEAPER than i-Phone packages. There is NOTHING, and I mean NOTHING AT ALL, that even makes me look towards i-Phone as an upcoming device yet, they can't even get out of the gate with anything useful. But again, I revert to the BOSE analogy, with their most populat speaker system available (retailing at $3600.00) only incorporating $180.00 worth of parts that are only capable of offering just short of 55% of the audible frequency range (something $199.00 big box speakers can do better)they STILL sell and people speak about BOSE as if they are a leader in the industry. (As far as industry experts go, BOSE is truly a laughing stock scam, one step above the white van scammers). Truth is, MARKETING made it all happen, they have garbage product and a horrific price, but people WANT ot be sold and they buy into the BOSE BS. People will buy whatever they are told to buy, even when everything points in another direction, they will still convince themselves they are getting value. If you believe you want something, you will also believe you see and hear things in order to substantiate your decision. If you believe you want something, no matter what evidence is presented, you will find a way to discount any others and stay firm to your original choice. These are feelings set out by trends, a fear of being unique or singled out etc. Like they say: No highs no lows, must be BOSE. However people will tell you they hear high end that the speaker is simply incapable of reproducing and they ignre all the sound they can't hear of course. Sheep, the world is full of them.

rosskr
rosskr

I believe that Palm pre has an edge over iphone becuase of the Qwery which makes it attactive for texting customers ..which is increasing every day ....i am sure that it will be widely accepted.

bratwizard
bratwizard

That's not the first smartphone to combine full touch screen and qwerty keyboard-- I've had the XV-6700 for *three* years now and it was OLD hat when I bought it.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

devices aren't full multi-touch screens like the ones you find in the BB Storm, iPhone, and Android G1. The XV-6700 is a decent device, but its touchscreen is not in the same category as the new breed of smartphones.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I know the system yuo are talkign about, Apple just added some multi touch chips to an antiquated touch technologu to bring it up to date. But to compare that to teh BBStorm is insane. The touch system is completely different. It's not the aftermarket multitouch chips that are the issue but teh base technology behind teh touch recognition system. apple is YEARS and YEARS behind competitors, they chose teh low road and made it APPEAR to be teh high road. Buy old garbage from a failed company, tweak it and sell it as cutting edge. No thanks.

shawmc
shawmc

The author of this article has either lived in a cave the last decade, or never used a smartphone before the iPhone. First touch screen with a QWERTY? Ever here of the Treo 600, I had that about 7 years ago! Since then the Treo 650, and 700, the HTC PPC 6600 and 6700, the Treo 755 and 800, the HTC Mogul and Touch Pro, and the Treo Pro (which I think is the best phone currently on the market, and my current device)And this is just off the top of my head. As for Multi-tasking. So when you are in one app and an IM or meeting reminder happens, and it pops up at the bottom of the screen and you can go to it or dismiss it with the touch of a button? Wow, sounds exactly like what Windows mobile does, and has done for the last 4 years or so. I've owned a lot of Treo's, and love them, mainly for their form factor, and Windows Mobile (600 and 650 excluded). But Palm has shown me no reason to have any faith in it's ability to really pull anything off, even the Treo line has become a back seat player because of the rep they have. I just don't see them pulling off a new OS and taking over the market. Sorry.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I have an HTC, it has touch, handwriting recognition (that actually works, even with drawings it straightens lines etc.) This is still light years ahead of Apple's i-Phone though, in actual benefits. The i-Phone is just a shopping platform, out of the box it does nothing and is incredibly limited in it's usefulness. You need to wade through apps to buy what will enhance it enough to become useful, which others do out of the box.

MetalFR0
MetalFR0

"Nevertheless, it?s the first smartphone to effectively combine a full touchscreen with an effective qwerty thumboard. Other devices will likely follow its lead." I'd give that honor to the HTC Touch Pro instead. It might not be the best around, but I'd venture to say despite it's shrunken key size due to the 5-row keyboard, but it's keys are probably still larger & friendlier than those of the Pre, if indeed the Pre's keys are smaller than the Blackberry Curve (which are already painfully small for guys like me w/ hereditarily large fingers).

roy8820
roy8820

I have an HTC Touch Pro and I'm sure there are phones before this one that also had a full qwerty and touchscreen. Not sure how you write the article w/out mentioning that? Anyway, I wonder will the Pre have the ease like the iPhone has on webpages. I have used a couple different phones for web browsing and nothing is as "real" as the iPhone. My Pro is ok when using Opera or Skyfire, but they don't come close to the iPhone in terms of feeling like you're going to a normal url and able to use all the features, especially the search!

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

HTC was more of a pioneer, not Apple. I know what you mean about web pages though, however I just use mine in Landscape and use it just like any other browser, I don't use the built-in search on the device's main screen though, but use Google on it all the time (as well as Google Maps, Google Earth and all the other apps I use on my desktop) why? Because I can. :D

chip
chip

I owned the samsung i730 with Windows Mobile, which was an excellent full-screen touch phone w/ slide-out QWERTY keyboard. In it's day it was the best choice available, but the Windows Mobile OS is limiting today. The Kyocera 7035 was also a good touch screen + keyboard phone, and was PalmOS based, but used Graffiti so it had a numeric pad for the phone, touch screen, and a touch-area for inputting graffitti-style handwriting. Great flip phone too, but large by today's standards.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

On screen text recognition, graffitti handwriting, or simple cursive handwriting, or block letter text or drawing recognition (takes sketches and makes them straight line drawings ready for print. Slide out QWERTY keyboard. That's whay my HTC offers today, and it's two years older than the i-Phone.

AppSupSpec
AppSupSpec

Don't count your chickens until they hatch...

cmherrmann
cmherrmann

If the folks at Apple would allow you to tether the iPhone I would be sold, until they do that I will stay with my Treo. It allows me web access on my laptop from virtually anywhere.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

.. I've looked all over the iPhone and iTouch devices; I'm starting to think that the battery is not user replaceable. ;)

mel897
mel897

There are 3rd party kits including a tool to pry them open... probably voids the warranty... but if it's dead anyway...

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Like the car industry designing in a set lifespan so that car owners can be new car owners again. I've seen phones that allow the back plate to come off fully though. The seam is the halfway point around the device which would not have broken the iPhone asthetics. As for leaving the iPhone in the car when in secure environments; it wouldn't work for me. I buy a PDA too use as a symbiot not as a pet I leave in the back seat with the window cracked while I'm in the grocery store. With my T5, the battery still holds enough charge for a day. It's not meant to be user replacable either though at the time of purchase, that wasn't an issue. It would be a problem now though if it was my primary device still. What ever happened to including a physical power switch wired in series with the battery; the good old days when "off" meant not "go into a deep but wakeable power saving state"

Hazydave
Hazydave

Well, when you're in a secure environment, you leave the iPhone home, or maybe in the car. That's the easy one. The battery is not user replaceable in any conventional sense. That's intentional. You can initially chalk it up to Steve Jobs' ruthless devotion to style over anything, even function. A replaceable battery would have been quite possible, even for a device this thin, but it would have required a split in the case somewhere -- stylistically ugly. But here's the real reason. Apple's basic notion is that an iPod should last you one year... great for you if it lasts longer, but they'd really like you to replace it within that year if you can be bothered. After all, they have a fairly full market -- most of the people who don't own iPods yet don't want them (a few aren't yet old enough). Other than that, their best market is users of existing iPods. So they have new models to lure you in, but they also can't have those old ones lasting too long. An iPod battery could give you several full years of service if you're a casual user. But consider the iPhone.. if you're using this as your telephone, your PDA, and your PMP, you are lucky to last out a day on one charge. So you're going to recharge it every night. The problem is, those Li-ions in the G1 and G2 iPhones are at the point of failure after 300-500 or so charges, and that's not even going to outlast your 2-year AT&T contract. But it pretty much does ensure you're going to need a new iPhone every two years, if not more often. Palm lost out.. my Treo 700p gave up the ghost on other things last fall, but it did many years of service, and yeah, the battery did fail, so I bought a replacement ($10 on Amazon.com).

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Some places take security seriously enough that when you meet, you remove the battery from your mobile phone and place the two separate pieces on the table in front of you. This is because mobile phones no longer truly turn off unless the power source is removed. A deep but connected sleep doesn't cut it. Voiding the warranty would be an option for self service though and given the width of the device, I see why it's not a owner accessible component. With the lifespan of batteries though, non-replaceable power sources imposes a given lifespan before replacement. Device lifespan by design sucks. But, it's mostly about not being able to replace what should be a standard component or remove it when the device must be absolutely off. On the hardware side anyhow.

bblackmoor
bblackmoor

The palm Pre is a pop-fly. Sure, it looks impressive up there. Then the competition catches it and the game is over. Palm missed a huge opportunity. If Palm wanted to be relevant in 2009 (and still exist in 2010), they should have leveraged Android. Android phones and iPhone will be going to the World Series. Palm will be watching from home with a bowl of popcorn and soggy nachos. If you want a Palm Pre, just wait a while. It will be on Woot before too long.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

i-Phone is a trendy gadget, not a useful device. how many spreadsheets can you create, open, edit and send with it? It doesn't like to do ANYTHING, unless you shop for a third party app. It was a late comer to teh marketplace, uses outdated technology that cripples its usability to become a viable device for business apps, it is a toy, a consumers gadget for people who want to play. How do you think i-Pods got so popular? They are not better devices thancompetetive players, WAY too many limitations, proprietary bateries and they sound like crap compared to even the cheapest Samsung player. But people have been lead down the sheeptrail long enough that Apple users think Apple is a pioneer in the industry. In reality they are just a company like BOSE that is all marketing and doesn't offer a product that beats out much lower priced competitors. Apple reminds me of the old Sex Pistols movie, The Great Rock'n Roll Swindle, however Apple are the great technology swindle. As Pink Floyd sang: "That's what you get for pretending the danger's not real. Meek and obedient you follow the leader Down well trodden corridors into the valley of steel. What a surprise! A look of terminal shock in your eyes. Now things are really what they seem. No, this is not a bad dream." "Bleating and babbling we fell on his neck with a scream." Wave upon wave of demented avengers March cheerfully out of obscurity into the dream.

The Admiral
The Admiral

The Palm Pre needs to be better than the Ipod 3G in that it has a user interface that is not complicated. It needs to have the "cool" factor attached to it, and it needs to run established programs and applications. If we are talking about a historically "the same" proprietary interfacing, lack of any kind of application support in open environments - then the Palm Pre should immediately be shunted into the trash can. If it can not outsell the Applie Ipod, then why bother, when all of the features of the qwerty keyboard can be done by the touch screen. Why anyone would need multi-tasking on such a tiny screen is beyond me, and from a Human Factors Standpoint, is attempting to shoot a fly of a problem with a bazooka.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Apple's touch technology is the worst out there, it was even dropped by the cpompany that invented it because they couldn't outsellf Elo/Tyco's technology. They originally designed it for Point of sale and kiosk apps, including bank ATM's but it fails on most fronts and more reliable, accurate technology took over years ago. Apple bought the old tech and tweaked it a bit but the foundation principles are still there and still fail due to inaccurate recognition and no screen durability. The better TS tech, capacitive touch, is used for everything these days, except specialized applications that benefit from IR touch, resisitive touch, etc. My HTC does both, slide out keyboard as well as 5-wire capacitive touch it runs all office apps, runs a database and bluetooth synchs with my notebook automatically when in range. Apple is a toy for kids that want to surdf the app store, it is not a useful device more than just a fun gadget to play with if you've never had a real smart phpone. Apple's dunb phone is fun, but when it comes to business smart phones dance circles around Apple and have done for years long before the i-Phone was born.

Stratocaster
Stratocaster

"All of the features of the qwerty kehboard can be done by the touch screen"? Do you ever send text messages? Do you ever search your contact lists?

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

Of all the writing recognition PDA type devices I've got my hands on, nothing yet comes close to Graphitti input. Even Palm's own character set they used after that was more prone to recognition errors. If I could get my N810 recognizing the Graphitti characters I'd probably use it's screen written input. Even the button pads on most devices doesn't compare to speed and accuracy of that old stylus input alphabet. But then, even Palm managed to forgo that for a "better" that wasn't.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

I do understand the term symbiot, however when I read it I though of VIDIOT, meaning a video game junkie, SYMBIOT meanign a Symbol junky. Sorry brain fart, get a lot of those in my elder years it seems. At least your not splitting hairs like the MULTITASKING guy, what a waste of skin that is!

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

It becomes a part of my like my wallet to the point of feeling naked when forgotten at home. It augments my memory while adding other functions in exchange for keeping it alive (feed it fresh information and a sip of power each day). It's beneficial rather than paralytic. Based on the biological definition and use of "bioware" symbiot in sci-fi, it seems like the more accurate title for a device that goes beyond a basic smartphone or PDA. :D

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

By Symbiot I thought you meant, Symbol-idiot. Sybol makes HARD ARSE rugged devices, now under the Motorola name. Most stadiums use an older SYmbol device for scannign tickets ono entry, parking and medical services use, them, doctors and hospitals (as they can be cleaned with solvents) and warehouses worldwide use them for inventory management (bar code scanning) man THEY are hot as far as mobile devices go, never seen anything from a consumer perspective that even comes CLOSE, even their own competitors don't stack up.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

I say "symbiot" because my PDA is far more than a PIM and music player. I go out of my way to explore and extend everything it is designed to do then everything it can do beyond that. The iPhone is a downgrade plane and simply. It's pretty. It does what it does well enough. I'm simply not the target customer.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

If someone has always driven a GM van they wouldn't understand the advantages of a Ford E-350. People who have never had a smartphone or have no use for a real business device, wouldn't see how much i-Phone lacks. For those who have owned smartphones or have business integration needs, the i-Phone falls flat on its face.

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

The worse I had to do was replace the third party screen cover. The last one I was too lazy to replace so the cover area over the virtual input fields is a mess.. still reads my stylus just fine though. I still miss the SMS bluetooth client and my Bluejacker app. Those are the two functions I've yet to adequately replace. Until I can, I have to type on the phone and no more random "your bluetooth is showing" broadcasts on the bus ride home.

Oz_Media
Oz_Media

Even the base interface on the Palm is 100X better than the i-Phone. Apple bought an old company who's touch system was dropped by ELO/Tyco as it was too prone to false input. At least Palm stuck with a tried and tested tech that actually works and is proven to outlast most other touch systems, capacitive touch. Bank machines worldwide use it, because it works and lasts.

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