Posts Tagged ‘cell’

Palm Pre – The iPhone Killer?

Palm Pre
Palm Pre

Palm Pre

The Palm Pre will not kill the iPhone, but it will give it a good dose of competition. It is a solidly built cell phone with a great, written-from-the-ground-up operating system. I fell in love with webOS, Palm’s new operating system. Although it is not always intuitive, this new operating system is easy to use. I can’t believe that I am advocating an operating system that is not intuitive, but I am. Here’s the reason.

If someone hands you a Pre and tells you to use it, you will most probably be baffled as to how it actually functions. It looks like a touch screen phone and it is, but it also has a slide out keyboard. In fact, it has three different input and control areas: the screen itself, the keyboard, and the small area below the screen which is called the Gesture area.

It this combination is what make the Pre so functional, but you may not be able to use it without any knowledge of how it works. However, that said, just have someone show you a few things or check out the Quick Start guide, and it won’t take you more than five or ten minutes to get going.

If you like to multi-task, this is the phone for you. It lets you fully  and easily control which applications are open and which you want to close. To give you an example of what I call “non-intuitive, but easy”, to close an application, you simply take your finger and swipe it in an upward motion to throw it off the screen. You might not be able to figure that out at first, but once you get it, it is very easy. As a matter of fact, it is also fun. The Pre has the same functionality as the iPhone with similar ways to expand and contract text, a screen that can be viewed either vertically or horizontally, but for some reason, it seems like more fun to use.

The Pre is easy to set up and uses an online system called Palm Profile to sync information, so you will spend less time with it tethered to your computer. It handles email beautifully and has all the other normal options like a camera, sms, mms, and cut & paste. It even has turn-by-turn navigation.

The Pre is perfect for information junkies and busy people. It has an excellent universal search. It also has a system called Synergy that congregates information from various areas and puts it all together for you. So if you have a contact in Facebook, and the same contact in Gmail and in your POP email, you won’t see him or her three times on your Pre. The Pre is smart enough to put all the info that you have on that person on one contact screen.

In fact, the Pre is one smart cookie. Although I think the keyboard needs improvement, this is still one to look at.

Here are my pros and cons:

Pros

  • Excellent crisp and responsive touch screen
  • Excellent webOS operating system
  • Handles multitasking applications beautifully
  • Synergy consolidates information very well
  • Very good universal search
  • Excellent email support
  • Slide-out keyboard
  • iTunes sync
  • Palm Profile for online backups

Cons

  • Keyboard slightly cramped and plasticy
  • Difficult to navigate through the Apps
  • Lack of Apps and App Store
  • Apps do not readily show their price

Right now the Pre is available only from Sprint, but Verizon will also carry it in a few months. My full review with pictures is at HardwareSecrets.com.

BlackBerry Storm Review

The BlackBerry Storm is BlackBerry’s answer to the iPhone — a touch screen smart phone. Although it is a viable option for business users, anyone who has had a previous BlackBerry will miss the keypad. This phone has some called SurePress. When you press a key or icon on the Storm’s screen you feel an actual sensation. There is a subtle click as if you were actually pressing a key. This gives you a reassuring confirmation that your input has been received, but I found it too much like typing on an old typewriter. It seemed to take a little more effort than typing on an iPhone.

The Storm has good call quality, cut & paste, excellent email functionality, an adequate media player, and a nice 3.2 megapixel camera with zoom, flash, and stabilizer. It can also take videos. It actually has a lot of great features, but over all, I’ll take a BlackBerry with a keypad or the touch screen on the iPhone. Here are my pros and cons:

Pros:

  • Excellent call quality
  • Good navigation
  • Enterprise email access
  • Good pictures and camera features
  • Included 8 GB memory card
  • Replaceable battery
  • Good battery life
  • Voice dialing
  • Set up wizards and online tutorials

Cons:

  • Text input somewhat difficult
  • Poor auto correction
  • Commands often too close together to press
  • No Wi-Fi
  • Slow camera focus
  • Browser not as good as some others

You can read my more detailed review with pictures at HardwareSecrets.com.

iPhone Took Only 3 Days with No Waiting in Line

Last Friday afternoon, I placed my order for an iPhone at the local AT&T store. There was no line and ordering the phone took about 5 minutes. AT&T said the phone would be delivered in about 7 days. I was surprised to get an email yesterday (Tuesday) saying that the iPhone had been delivered to the store. All I had to do was to come in to have it activated and take it home. So my iPhone took only two working days…. outstanding!

I went in to pick up the phone today. There were no lines and activation took only about 20 minutes. The nice folks at AT&T even gave me a personalized tour of the phone’s features.

In case you are interested, there are still no iPhones in stock at any of the stores that I checked. You can order one the way I did. But now they are now saying that it will take 7-21 days for delivery.

My shiny white iPhone is beautiful! Now to have fun checking out all the features. I’ll give you the pros and cons as soon as I can.

BTW Read the OakInnovations Blog for an interesting, detailed explanation of why Apple will not introduce a white iPhone….They just did!

iPhone 2nd Generation – Time to Buy??

Last year when the iPhone first appeared, I suggested waiting for the next generation of the iPhone in which Apple would shake out the bugs and add more features. Well, that time has come. The new Apple iPhone is definitely appealing.

Apple's iPhone
Apple's iPhone

The pluses are many:
1. With support for 3G networks, the new iPhone will be much faster than the old one.
2. Apple has slashed the price. The 4GB model will now sell for $199 and the 8GB model for $299.
3. GPS satellite location is built into the new iPhone
4. Apple has opened the phone for new applications. Games, location services,support for enterprise features, and plenty of cool software will be available.
5. This iPhone has improved battery life.

There is only one con, but it may very important for some:
1. AT&T has upped the minimum monthly data charge, which you need for the iPhone to work, from $20 to $30.

One other problem for me and for at least some others, is that AT&T hasn’t yet initiated a 3G network in my area. That means I would be paying that extra monthly fee for faster access that I could only use when I travel.

I want to buy the new iPhone, but many other companies will be introducing new “iClone” models of their own. So I feel obliged to check them out before I fork over my $$$. Feel free to post your comments. I’d love to know what others are thinking.


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