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Review: Palm Pre

First and foremost, I was not asked by Palm to write this review. I'm doing it as a good-will gesture to everyone considering the switch to a Palm Pre. Now on to the review:

I have owned a Palm product since 2001. The Pre is my 3rd device. I scoffed at the Blackberry and iPhone pressure knowing that my Palm product was doing its job just fine thank you. Thus I moved from a Palm Treo to the Palm Pre.


Date storage:
All your data is stored virtually. There is no desktop software, as with the Treo and previous Palm devices. And this is where I got tripped up.

The nice guy who sold me my Pre told me to open up a Palm Profile. This would allow me to have a back up of my data and if my Pre was ever stolen, I could go in and hit delete and all the data on the device would go BLAMMO. Gone. Cool.


He nor any of the Palm material I read said that once you did this, it would NOT sync with Google Calendar. I did discover that the handbook does say once you put all your info on the Palm Profile that it can't be accessed from an online account. But I still think it's a pretty confusing method of tranferring data from the deskstop to the Pre.

The calendar on my Palm is pulled from Google calendar. I chose it because it was an easy way for my husband & I to keep track of each other's calendars without calling each other 2-3 times a day, which we have done before. Google also now has a way for you to add sub-calendars to your main calendar, so the husband doesn't have to see all my work appointments, just things I want him to see like evening events. Nifty, eh? Oh yeah, he got a Pre too, so it works awesome for us.

Now the key to migrating from a Treo to a Pre AND having all your old data show up on the Pre AND Google Calendar is to NOT put your data on the Palm Profile.* When you are prompted, choose Google Calendar. If you put it on the Palm Profile, it stays on the Pre and doesn't go anywhere else - including the other calendar options I'm not using.

You might not want your events from 2002 to be on Google Calendar, but if you're like me, you just might schedule things in advance that you might want to keep and not have to duplicate later on.

But after I finally got my calendar all figured out, it's awesome. As I said it's awesome to have the husband's calendar at my fingertips as well as a few other friends calendars I subscribe to. Oh yes, I have geeky friends.

The email system is great. I have my Gmail and Yahoo mail set up and I can read either account separately or together. Yes, I can read Gmail and Yahoo together and reply and the Pre is smart enough to know which email account to use. Ah, technology...making multi-tasking even more efficient.

The best part, for me, is the delete function. All you need to do is sling the email (while in the inbox or folder) to the right and BAM! it's deleted.

I do think that because the email is sync'd to my Yahoo and Gmail account and it's not really downloading email as it did on the Treo, that it's slower. There are times when I'm faster than the system, delete an email and then it shows up again in a few minutes. Patience is key.

You can set up the email to alert you whenever an email arrives, every few minutes or whatever you want. I have it set up for manual check. I'll get to why in a few...

In some sense the tasks have been improved and in another not so much. Tasks do not sync to Google tasks, which is a downer, but I can live with it.

You can now set up tasks for say work and then a list underneath with due dates. Which is freaking awesome! Now I have tasks for work, personal, writing and my volunteer stuff.

The thing that I'm still trying to figure out is how to view only the tasks that are due or overdue. The manual and help keep telling me how, but it's not working.

My husband has finally stopped telling me that he's going to buy me an iPod. The sound is excellent! AND when you have a song on the Pre, you can also use it as a ringtone without any transfer or whatnot we've had to do before. No more buying ringtones!!

Web browser:
I'd say it's ok. I'm not happy that mobile sites look like crap, but I guess the point is to use the real site instead. But when I'm reading news sites, I have to enlarge the text big time and then scroll thru all the graphics. Another aspect I'm still trying to get use to.

That said, some sites do look great. Facebook is not one of them. But I do have access to more sites than on the Treo. Win some, lose some.

The app store is still tiny. The winners so far is Tweed (for twitter) that allows me to RT with one click, search for keywords & hashtags and gives me access to DMs too. It's better than Twitter! Also the Pandora and NYTimes apps are awesome.

Operation system:
So far so good. I'm still getting use to having to click everything with my fingers. Thank the goddess for the pull out keyboard. I don't know how iPhone peeps do it. I really miss the stylus when trying to copy & paste things into emails. Which makes the RT on Tweed even more sweet.

Battery life:
This is the big downer. BUT it can be managed if you know what to look for.

The first week my husband's Pre was hot to the touch. We thought it was a bad battery, but apparently he had everything on - GPS (I never have this one, I'm paranoid), instant emails, etc. I would like to think I'm a semi-power user. I can make it from 7 am to 5 pm without having to recharge, but then I do have to recharge when I get home or in the car. So for the time being I'm bringing my charger to work and plugging in so I'm not using battery power. I do believe I'll buy a spare charger for work soon. I was waiting to make sure I was in for the long haul with this baby.


I did lose the 2x zoom from the Treo, but I gained a flash. Also the pics are super crisp. I have no idea what the pixel count is, all I know is that it takes great pics....if I'm not moving.

What else to tell you about??

I haven't used every feature of the Pre, but I feel that after 3 weeks I've used it enough to know that I love it. Not head over heels, but I love it.

If you want to know about other features, just leave a comment and I'll reply.

Thanks for reading!!

*If you did put all your calendar stuff on the Palm Profile, you need to do a partial wipe of the Pre AND wipe the Palm Profile clean. I can't remember how to do it, but call customer service and they will help. When you sync back up, you may have duplicates in your calendar & contacts, but it was worth the price to finally get my calendar all set up the way I wanted.


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