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Palm Pre FAQ

Gizmodo has an up-to-date Palm Pre FAQ.

Meanwhile: has rapid fire coverage specific to the device.
PrePoint is adding historical context, comparing the new OS to ACCESS and pointing to some of the things we DON’T know about the Pre.
Pre Community is discussing both the business and technical aspects of the Pre.
PalmPreView dug up more hints from the past about the Pre.
I expect that the official Palm Developer Blog will ramp up coverage quickly, too.


Palm Pre

I watched the Palm Pre CES announcement. WOW.

I’m blown away. I read the blog posts, but even they did not prepare me for the complete package. Watch that video ASAP.

I still think Apple could win this war, but Palm is definitely showing up for the fight. Before the Palm Pre announcement I would have ranked the smartphone operating systems as Apple, RIM, Nokia, Microsoft. Now I think it’s Apple, Palm (Web OS), RIM, Nokia, Microsoft. And if everything shown in that video pans out and Apple doesn’t repsond in a major way, the ranking will move to Palm (Web OS), Apple, RIM, Nokia, Microsoft.

It makes you think. Are the other players sitting on some next gen tech, too? Will we see something earth shattering from Microsoft soon? One thing is for sure. This year, last and next are going to be historic for the phone industry.

Here are some of my observations (crossposted on Twitter) while watching the Palm Pre announcement:

  • The Palm Pre would not have happened if the iPhone hadn’t happened first. But, Apple needs to respond ASAP.
  • Developers Developers Developers Developers. Developers Developers Developers Developers. CSS, JS, Ajax, HTML.
  • If you browse to one of your Outlook contacts, their Facebook contact info will appear, too, if you are connected there.
  • If you are on a call and you place the phone on the inductive charger, the call moves to speakerphone.
  • Typing while no app is in the foreground starts a device-wide search for content or apps that match your text entry.
  • Conversations are in one pane even if they move from IM to SMS to IM.
  • PalmPilot: Centralize todo, calendar, documents, etc. Treo: Combine MP3 player, camera, PDA, Phone. Pre: Unify your online personas.
  • Web Browser Instances are treated, each, as currently running apps. They are each in the carousel with email, etc.
  • Task switching is baked in. Currently running apps appear in a carousel and can be discarded by swiping them up.
  • The application launcher appears, translucently, over the current foreground app. Like glass.
  • The CPU (TI OMAP 3430) has horsepower and Palm is the first to use it in a phone.

Palm TX – How to change the popup keyboard from alphabetical to qwerty

mySkin!  Update: The keyboard is qwerty in portrait mode and alphabetical in landscape mode.  There are currently no utilities to change that behavior.  I thought mySkin fixed it, but it doesn’t.

Palm-Related: Enfora Wifi Portfolio Mod

This guy modified an Enfora Wifi Portfolio, turning it into a (much smaller) sled!

Seven Apps I WISH Existed! [For PalmOS 5]

Here are some apps that I’ve recently searched for(and tested some candidates) but was unable to find. I think they are obvious, but maybe not. What do you think? What are the applications you’ve been searching for?
1. – ClipCopier – I wish there was an app that would let me easily(1 button press) copy the clipboard from my PC to my PDA and vice versa.
2. – Hour Flash – Cuckoo Clock can sound a tone for you every hour, but only if a calendar entry is not blocking the way. I’d prefer an application that flashed the green led on the top of my Tungsten C every hour regardless of what was happening on the screen.
4. – Yellow Pages, White Pages for the 650, 510 and 415 area codes. It can’t be THAT much data. I would gladly clear enough space for a 5MB phone book file(with addresses).
5. – Texas Hold’em Poker Tutor – I’ve tried everything out there and there is still no good, solid Hold’em tutor for Palm OS.
6. – Tabbed web browser with background loading.
7. – Port of the BallDroppings timewaster(this game is fantastic).

Palm Evolution and Next Steps

Reading through the Palm Evolution site (for the umpteenth time), I started thinking about the Palm milestones for 2005 and 2006. It seems like a guarentee that by the end of 2006, we’ll be drueling over a Cobalt 2 PalmOS PDA with a 3-4 megapixel camera(stills, video), 5GB HD, VGA screen, 802.11g(or better), Bluetooth, 3D chipset, integrated thumbpad keyboard, decent battery life, and plenty of expansion ports(a card slot or two, IR, firewire).

This is all great, but I’d like to see some real changes in the way we interact with the device PHYSICALLY. WHEN is someone going to step up to the plate and create a killer, top of the line PDA whose primary screen is my glasses and whose primary input is a detached analog joystick or trackball? Of course, I’d also be pulling for a chordic (one-handed, portable, 5-10 key) keyboard. I wish an industry loudmouth would drop a couple grand(ouch) on existing wearable stuff(HUD glasses, chord keyboard, small trackball or 3d mouse, tiny Linux or Windows PC) and run the PalmOS simulator in full screen mode. Walk around with that setup for a month and report back. Better still – write a book so we all can read it. Does the PalmOS UI design lend itself to a lightweight wearable setup? Steve Mann and many other researchers have already been doing this kind of stuff WITHOUT the PalmOS, so we could learn something there, too.

Crossposted to PalmAddicts