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Palm Pre will launch on June 6 nationwide

One of the most anticipated smartphones scheduled to launch this year is the Palm Pre, which was first announced at CES in January. Sprint officially announced the launch date and features of the Palm Pre today. The launch date nationwide will be on June 6. The Pre will sell for $199.99 after a new two-year Sprint service agreement and a $100 mail-in rebate.

Sprint claims that the Pre is the perfect handset for the user who juggles both a busy home and work life. The Pre allows users to get the business features and entertainment features that typically require different handsets in one device.

Sprint CEO Dan Hesse said, "The argument that you need one phone for work and another phone for play, or that you have to make compromises between business and lifestyle productivity, is over,” said Dan Hesse, president and CEO of Sprint. “With Pre, compromises of the past are history."

Sprint reports that the Pre is optimized for use with its Everything plan offering unlimited voice, data, and text messaging on the device. Among the key features Palm Synergy of the Pre are linked contacts, layered calendars, and combined messaging.

Linked contacts allow you have access to contacts from multiple sources in one place. Contacts from Outlook, Google, and Facebook can be put into the device and the phone will recognize that contacts from three different places are all the same person and combine them.

Layered calendars allows you to see work and personal calendars in one look and users can remove layers they don’t want to see. Combined messaging allows viewing all chats with the same person in a chat-style view even if it starts in IM and then a reply is sent via a text message. Pre also searches the device and the Internet at the same time.

Palm President and CEO Ed Colligan said, "Pre is truly a new phone for a new web-centric age. We’re a mobile society, and we want our people, calendars, and information to move with us. With Pre’s exquisite design and the unique webOS software, running on Sprint’s fast broadband network, we’re changing the perception of what a wireless phone can be."

Some of the Palm accessories have already been leaked online including the Touchstone charging dock. The Pre will ship with a normal power cord that you plug in. The Touchstone accessory will give users a special back plate and a Touchstone charger that charges the Pre by simply setting it on the charge pad. The complete Touchstone kit will sell for $69.99 and will be available on June 6. Palm will also sell the accessories separately with the Touchstone dock selling for $49.99 and the Touchstone back cover for $19.99.

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By dani31 on 5/19/2009 10:23:23 AM , Rating: 3
Let the iphone - palm pre flame war begin.

RE: Yes!
By Bender 123 on 5/19/2009 10:46:03 AM , Rating: 5

RE: Yes!
By Murloc on 5/19/2009 11:15:59 AM , Rating: 3
palm pre has got a real keyboard

RE: Yes!
By omnicronx on 5/19/09, Rating: -1
RE: Yes!
By Natfly on 5/19/2009 1:03:41 PM , Rating: 2
Your post confuses me.
"to lose sleep over" - to worry about excessively. So slide out keyboards are nothing to be worried about? In what sense?

As far as tactile keyboards being worse than a pure touch screen, I'd have to disagree. In my experience tactile keyboards, even small ones, you can feel where to push with your thumb. So even with big fingers, you know exactly what part of your thumb to push down.

RE: Yes!
By invidious on 5/19/2009 1:54:09 PM , Rating: 2
he obviously meant "nothing to get excited about" but you did make me laugh pointing out his misphrasing.

I had no trouble getting used to the touch keyboard, you get used to not having the tactile response relatively quickly. I am not sure that it is necisary, autocorrect and muscle memory do the job just fine. Now that you mention it I am going to go try to find a wpm app to see how fast I can type on my iphone.

If anyone can do this on a phone with a querty keyboard please post your results, also post your wpm for using a computer to put things in perspective.

RE: Yes!
By quiksilvr on 5/19/2009 2:01:09 PM , Rating: 2
I don't really see why they feel the need to squish a full keyboard like that IN PORTRAIT. You can easily type with this:

It's simple, they keys are huge, and makes one handed texting a snap ( why else would you have a full potrait keyboard in the first place? If it was intended for two hands, a slide out landscape keyboard would have made a lot more sense).

RE: Yes!
By TomZ on 5/19/2009 3:35:38 PM , Rating: 3
Bottom slide out keyboards are nothing to lose sleep over. If those with big fingers thought they had problems with the iPhone softkeyboard, just wait until they try to use this.
I see people texting all the time with these types of keyboards, and they are 5X faster than people trying to type on an iPhone. It's not even a close race at all.

RE: Yes!
By omnicronx on 5/19/2009 4:49:38 PM , Rating: 1
and they are 5X faster than people trying to type on an iPhone.
On a slide down keyboard? I really doubt that considering you have to use one hand. I'm not one for a touch only keyboard either, I went from an HTC apache with a lanscape keyboard to a HTC touch dual with a slide down keyboard and there was no comparison. I found the the touch dual's keyboard essentially useless compared to the softkeybard because you have to slide it down anyways, so its not like you can press buttons in your pocket. While its not a full keyboard like the pre, it still lacks the same real estate which makes using two hands impossible.

So back to the main point, I don't own an iPhone so I cannot compare. But I surely can type almost as fast as a slide down hard keyboard using my diamond in landscape mode. It was the reason I chose the diamond over the Touch Pro.

Furthermore simple programs exist to give feedback when you hit a key on the softkeyboard, this greatly improves my accuracy too.(no double pressing, you know if you have hit a button or not)

RE: Yes!
By retrospooty on 5/19/2009 11:06:11 PM , Rating: 2
"If those with big fingers thought they had problems with the iPhone softkeyboard, just wait until they try to use this. "

Umm... You do realize that all Treo's that started the whole smartphone craze, and most win mobile phones, which improved upon the Treo platform, and most blackberries which totally dominate the entire market all have this same size keyboard right? Its pretty much a standard. For most smartphone business users (which is hte bread and butter of the market segment) the iphone's biggest drawback is the lack of it.

RE: Yes!
By thartist on 5/19/2009 11:09:51 PM , Rating: 2
I could never really feel exited about it because it is the least attractive, fatty device i've seen in a long time, and i think i'm not alone about that.

Sounds like...
By Motoman on 5/19/2009 10:22:43 AM , Rating: 2 has Outlook integration, which is the one and only useful feature the BlackBerry has over anything. And I vastly preferred my old Palm Treo to any of the BlackBerrys that have been foisted upon me over the years.

My only gripe is that I wish the thing was designed to tilt over to the side and have the keyboard be in a wider format. A wider keyboard is always better. But at least it has a real keyboard, which means it will be a useful device.

RE: Sounds like...
By mcnabney on 5/19/2009 10:46:40 AM , Rating: 4
...but it is on a crappy network...

/waits patiently

RE: Sounds like...
By dusteater on 5/19/2009 12:04:36 PM , Rating: 1
Sprint is by far the best network. I dumped Verizon last year and so glad I did, paying double for worse reception. Sprint has better coverage and much cheaper plans. I am thrilled the Pre is coming to Sprint!

RE: Sounds like...
By Mojo the Monkey on 5/19/2009 12:07:46 PM , Rating: 3
You're a fool if you don't realize that your network experience should fluctuate WILDLY, based on your specific location. In various cities, each of the main carriers hold the local "best coverage" crown.

...but I'd still never buy into nickle-and-dime-death AT&T

RE: Sounds like...
By Motoman on 5/19/2009 3:10:41 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly. Where we live, Verizon is vastly better than Sprint. And oddly enough, my wife's first phone on pay-as-you-go Virgin Mobile, actually had the best reception of anything we've had here.

RE: Sounds like...
By Natfly on 5/19/2009 8:43:52 PM , Rating: 4
Funny because Virgin Mobile operates on Sprint's network :P

RE: Sounds like...
By Mojo the Monkey on 5/20/2009 2:14:26 PM , Rating: 2
So in her particular case, it might have had something to do with the reception capabilities of the actual cell phone.

RE: Sounds like...
By Jeffk464 on 5/19/2009 11:10:42 PM , Rating: 2
You mean sprint has better coverage in your area. I'm a truck driver so I did a lot of research on who has the best coverage before I signed a contract. Verizon wins hands down, but their phones stink.

By GTaudiophile on 5/19/2009 11:21:04 AM , Rating: 4
Does it come in a Quad-Band GSM flavor? What about an unlocked version? What happens if someone tries to use this thing overseas?

When these providers realize that tethering their phone to one (Sprint, AT&T) netork is really lame?

GSM, Unlocked, Available to the entire world = FTW!

By justjc on 5/19/2009 6:58:44 PM , Rating: 2
Palm Pre is scheduled to be available first in the United States exclusively from Sprint in the first half of 2009, and will be followed by a world-ready UMTS version for other regions. Sprint's pricing for the phone has not yet been determined.

UMTS is what we in Europe calls 3G, sadly besides it being the 3G version they showed at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona there haven't been much news on it.

Rumors says it will be available before Christmas, however the above US model have had rumors of release date as early as April 2009, so much can happen.

By Targon on 5/20/2009 6:50:13 AM , Rating: 2
Sprint has the exclusive in the USA through the end of 2009. In Europe, Vodafone is rumored to have a version in the works, so a GSM version is ready, just not available yet.

By excelsium on 5/20/2009 4:24:01 PM , Rating: 2
They know its lame, but they will continue to do it anyway. same with many things they do, anything for another cent of your money.

I'm an idiot iPhone
By Chaser on 5/19/2009 11:21:58 AM , Rating: 1
and like all the other lemmings that have no clue and buy one just because it says Apple on it, I believe the Pre is going to have trouble establishing itself just due to the fact that the iPhone has become a household name.

But I hope the iPhone does get some serious competition as that would be a win for all. And all joking aside, except among techie phone types, none of these so called "iPhone killers" have come anywhere close to living up to that title. I hope the Pre gets closer.

RE: I'm an idiot iPhone
By thornburg on 5/19/2009 11:42:42 AM , Rating: 2
Accidentally clicked "not worth reading"...

I agree with the general sentiment of the above post: I hope the Pre is something approaching on-par with the iPhone, because competition is good, and so far the iPhone has no actual competition.

RE: I'm an idiot iPhone
By Mojo the Monkey on 5/19/2009 12:11:45 PM , Rating: 1
I disagree. There are phones out there which are technologically "iPhone killers," but it always comes down to the application store.

I think my personal phone (leaving it out to avoid flame) is better in every way, but it doesnt have the same app store that attracts the average user.

RE: I'm an idiot iPhone
By Chaser on 5/19/2009 1:31:04 PM , Rating: 2
Killer meaning upsurping it's undeniable and unprecedented popularity. However I do agree the app store had a lot to do with it.

RE: I'm an idiot iPhone
By RamarC on 5/20/2009 8:38:30 PM , Rating: 2
after a year, my sprint <name excluded> phone has finally gotten some half-way-decent software and is close to meeting its potential. it ain't an iphone killer but it's almost an iphone-lite (which is what i was looking for).

i hope the pre doesn't suffer from crap software like the sprint <name excluded> did since it's going to be my wife's birthday present instead of a bb curve.

Let me out of the walled garden
By SurreDeth on 5/19/2009 11:04:20 AM , Rating: 2
I don't want a phone. I want an actual palm sized computer with a real browser and email client. I want to run my vpn client, putty, and rdp when I have to. I can use skype when I have to make phone calls, I don't want to have to pay you greedy sob for minutes or waste $99 a month for a plan that really doesn't include everything.

RE: Let me out of the walled garden
By Nat495 on 5/19/2009 11:51:14 AM , Rating: 2
By jadeskye on 5/19/2009 12:09:56 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for bringing my attention to that. i didn't even know it existed. WANT. ^_^

By ctodd on 5/19/2009 12:09:04 PM , Rating: 3
The Pre will ship with a normal power cord that you plug in.
That is too funny!

They sure as hell better not sell me an abnormal one that you can't plug in, or I will be mad!!

RE: Okay...
By ctodd on 5/19/2009 12:16:51 PM , Rating: 2
Before I get flamed, I know I took the line out of context. I just thought the sentence by itself was funny. And it wasn't meant as a jab at Shane. All in fun.

RE: Okay...
By justjc on 5/19/2009 7:10:47 PM , Rating: 1
No wonder they have to use that sentence as one of the main attractions of the Pre on CES was its futuristic "Touchstone charger that charges the Pre by simply setting it on the charge pad"

The little I heard about the American consumer assures me that there would be complains and legal trouble, for Palm and Sprint, if they didn't make it clear that the futuristic charger wasn't part of the normal packet, making a sentence like "The Pre will ship with a normal power cord that you plug in." necessary, because the American consumer can't be bothered to look at the contents listings on the package they belive the commercials ;-p

First Smart Phone
By UsernameX on 5/19/2009 4:38:47 PM , Rating: 2
I've been with Sprint my entire life thus far. (Which has been about 6 years now.) I've never had issues with Sprint other then there customer service, and even then I've had a few moments where it was decent. I've always wanted a smart phone since the IPhone was released, but nothing has "pushed" me into the smart phone movement because I've had such a stellar plan with sprint. (employee plan) The palm pre is elegant, business capable, but more importantly for my purposes, it keeps me in contact with my friends and family, as we do most of our communication online. I'm very excited to finally be moving from a "cell phone" to a smart phone. How about you guys?

RE: First Smart Phone
By ZachDontScare on 5/19/2009 4:50:25 PM , Rating: 2
I've been with Sprint my entire life thus far. (Which has been about 6 years now.)

Wow, you're quite literate for a 6 year old ;-)

RE: First Smart Phone
By UsernameX on 5/19/2009 7:01:41 PM , Rating: 2
Yah... I've been educated by the best.

**For the last 6 years of my life, I've been with Sprint. (I'm 24 now lol)

By Spivonious on 5/19/2009 10:28:22 AM , Rating: 2
Reminds me of my old Palm Pilot. Learning graffiti was a bit hard, but the infrared link to play block-breaker with a friend was worth it. Oh, and Sub Hunt is probably the best "mobile" game of all time.

RE: Memories
By djkrypplephite on 5/19/2009 11:23:43 AM , Rating: 2
Subhunt is epic. I had that on my calculator in high school. Oh the days.

I will definitely be picking this thing up ASAP. Of course, I haven't heard anything about any app store of any kind, or sites offering apps for WebOS, though maybe that's an NDA thing that goes with the SDK package.

3 unbiased opinions
By grandpope on 5/19/2009 11:38:27 AM , Rating: 2
Between the CEO of Sprint, the CEO of Palm, and Shane McGlaun, i'm sure that we just receieved a fair and unbiased commercial for the Pre.

DT needs to create a new category called 'advertising', call the kettle what it is.

RE: 3 unbiased opinions
By jarman on 5/19/2009 12:06:55 PM , Rating: 2
Dude, it's the internet. There's nothing unbiased on it...

damn, Sprint
By Jeffk464 on 5/19/2009 11:08:08 PM , Rating: 2
When will verizon finally get one of the cool new phones on the market. It is really frustrating, first I wanted the I-phone and now I can't get the palm pre. I remember having high hopes for the blackberry storm only to find out that it was a dud.

By VooDooAddict on 5/20/2009 10:02:41 AM , Rating: 2
I'll pick one up as I'm still in contract with sprint and like the Everything Plan. I'll probably try for a 1 year contract if there still a small discount.

If AT&T had a similarly priced everything plan for the iPhone I might make the switch. Right now I like no sup[rises on the bill.

By Mojo the Monkey on 5/20/2009 2:16:50 PM , Rating: 2
Any estimates on how long it will take for the XDA guys to install android on this?

OOoh.... I'd buy that.

"Spreading the rumors, it's very easy because the people who write about Apple want that story, and you can claim its credible because you spoke to someone at Apple." -- Investment guru Jim Cramer
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