Hands on with the Palm Pre – Initial impressions

Sat, May 2, 2009


A forum member over at EverythingPre was able to get his hands on a Palm Pre through a buddy of his who received a review unit.  While clearly not a substitute for an in-depth review, it seems that the Pre is a worthy effort, but won’t be challenging the iPhone anytime soon.  Here are his initial impressions.

– Not the strongest build quality

– Web browser is nice

– UI isn’t as friendly as the iPhone

– Notes that absence of an alarm clock is “disconcerting”

– IM/Text layout is very intuitive

– Multitasking works well, with no noticeable slowdown as number of open applications increase

– The absence of an on-screen keyboard is noticeable

– Keyboard is crowded, and not as satisfying as a BlackBerry keyboard

– Speed isn’t fantastic, but is on the same level as the iPhone (i.e things take some time to open)

– Phone seems plasticky.  Doesn’t hate the build quality, but could be better.

– Good weight to the phone, and not too bulky

– Transitions aren’t always immediate

– He can see the gesture area becoming both useful and cumbersome

Update: Another Palm site is confirming that the Pre launch date will in fact be in June

Related: Why iPhone users won’t flock to the Palm Pre come June



5 Comments For This Post

  1. Gottoon Says:

    All phones have their pros and cons. But I don’t get where you are getting the comment “it seems that the Pre is a worthy effort, but won’t be challenging the iPhone anytime soon” based on the info you provided.

    Another note… No Palm I have ever seen has come with a built-in alarm. There are too many free after market alarm programs out there for better customization.

  2. Constable Odo Says:

    Let’s face it, the Pre is going to end up light years behind the next iPhone. Palm is struggling for survival and Apple can throw megabundles of cash into the iPhone. If the Pre’s barely up to snuff with the current iPhone then the newer iPhone will kick sand into the Pre’s face. The new iPhone is going to have a faster processor and graphics processor support. Pre’s goose is cooked for certain. The iPhone is going to have the gaming graphics prowess greater than a PSP and at least 5,000 games on an HD screen. Nobody will be giving up their iPhone for a Pre.

  3. Olternaut Says:

    Despite my respect for WebOS and the Palm Pre which is technically superior in both hardware and operating system, if the new gen iphone debuting in June has true multi-tasking then Palm is in real trouble.

    Actually, they are in trouble now but it will be even more so if the next gen iphone is truly a next gen device and not a simple point upgrade.

  4. Cragfast Says:

    I’m sorry but WebOS is an operating system that was designed for a mobile device.
    This was actually pointed out by Palm as a positive feature just after the Pre was announced
    IPhone uses full blown OSX with a lot of the crap left out and very very well optimized.
    Apple can and has decided what bits to leave out of the OS to run on any particular hardware.
    As the horsepower of the hardware increases Apple can but in more Bells & Whistles, with a realativly little effort because it’s already in the OS.
    Palm on the otherhand have got by all accounts a very nice to use operating system that works well on a first generationSmart Mobile Device.
    Time will tell if Palm can easily Scale Up WebOS to harness the power of the next generation of mobile hardware.
    I hope Palm can do this with WebOS but I think they have an uphill battle.

  5. robinson Says:

    “No Palm I have ever seen has come with a built-in alarm.”

    Every Palm OS device I’ve owned has come with a built-in alarm! It’s a standard feature of the embedded PIM programs.

    Of course, the article said “alarm clock”. Not sure what that meant… but if it means no alarm, then the Pre is toast! If it means, no face display with a clock, then I’m all in favor of it!

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