Print 70 comment(s) - last by omnicronx.. on Oct 22 at 2:40 PM

  (Source: HP/Palm)

HP's Palm Pre 2 features webOS 2.0 and improved internals, but only packs a tiny 3.1-inch 320x480 display.  (Source: HP/Palm)
New device features a tiny 320x480 and won't launch in the U.S. until next month -- what is HP thinking?

Today Palm ended weeks of speculation unveiling the Palm Pre 2 (previously code-named Mansion) and its new webOS 2.0.  HP has shown its hand and it appears as underwhelming at best.

On the surface the device itself seems reasonably well-equipped, containing the kind of high-end hardware you'd find on a high-end Android phone.  The phone packs a 1 GHz processor (doubling the original Pre's processor which was underclocked to 500 MHz).  The camera is bumped from 3 MP to 5 MP.  Memory holds steady at 512 MB -- the same as the Pre Plus.  And the Flash storage -- 16 GB -- is also identical to the Pre Plus'.

The biggest disappointment is the screen.  The Pre 2 still packs the same 3.1-inch 320x480  HVGA display as its predecessor, at a time when Android and Apple have graduated to higher resolutions.  Other potential downside is the lack of microSD support and the lack of support for the latest/fastest 802.11n wireless standard.

If this was Hewlett-Packard's grand scheme to use its recent acquisition Palm to make a splash on the smart phone market, something seems to be missing. 

Compare Palm's launch today with Microsoft's launch of Windows Phone 7 next month and you'll realize that Palm is at a distinct disadvantage.  Palm only has one new handset -- Microsoft has nine (as does Android, for that matter).  Palm supports apps (including Angry Birds and Oprah Mobile!), Skype, Bluetooth, and VPN, but Microsoft is expected to support these things as well (and Android already does).

One of the only advantages that Palm holds over Microsoft is that webOS 2.0, features a refined version of true multitasking, which is available for both third party and built-in apps.  Windows Phone 7 is expected to only support multitasking for built-in apps, not for third party apps.  Then again, the iOS and Android platforms already support true multitasking, so Palm is hardly in a league of its own here.

The success or failure of the Pre 2 ultimately matters little to HP, other than perhaps as a matter of pride (it's chief rival Dell is designing/launching multiple upcoming Android and Windows Phone 7 smart phones).  HP can afford to sustain Palm even if the experiment isn't working out, in interest of one day trying to conquer the phone market.

But in the face of a fast-advancing smart phone market, HP needs to do something at some point if it ever wants to get ahead -- more handsets -- better hardware than its competitors -- some decisive advantage.  That something is not the Palm Pre 2 -- a single smart phone with a tiny, low-resolution screen and lack of brand recognition. 

But HP seems determined to go its own way and will launch the device into the packed market anyways.  The Pre 2 will launch Friday in France and in "coming months" in the United States and Canada.

Comments     Threshold

This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled

Perhaps a 1Ghz Resurrection
By Bruneauinfo on 10/19/2010 5:17:45 PM , Rating: 2
i pretty much hate my Palm Pre. i've been using it for over a year now. my first one was destroyed and i'm on my second. was hoping my first was just defective, before it was smashed of course, but the new one isn't much better than the old one was pre-crushed. not saying there are any hardware defects or battery problems with my Pre. but the thing is clunky and the user interface is poorly designed - i think over-designed for the hardware. touchscreen interface needs a lot of work. and the QC in the apps - both integrated and from the market - is pretty low.

so here's hoping Pre 2 and WebOS 2.0 resolve some of these issues. VERY unlikely i'll get one anytime soon or ever, unless it turns out HP worked some kind of miracle.

RE: Perhaps a 1Ghz Resurrection
By finbarqs on 10/20/2010 12:40:12 AM , Rating: 2
Sure, Linux supports TRUE multi-tasking, but so far, only WebOS managed to pull off true multi-tasking. Try this on your iOS or Android phones:

Open a notepad, and write someone's contact information in. Now go create a new contact, and switch between the apps and copy them back and forth. I can't do that with my EVO device, if I don't finish a contact and switch to another app, that app is outta there!

With the WebOS, I'll just swipe between cards, and voila! I can copy! oh and I like using swipe commands more than looking for buttons. It's just more fun! The only thing I'd say is a disadvantage to this WebOS 2.0 is that it looks dated... Maybe a more updated OS?

RE: Perhaps a 1Ghz Resurrection
By Bruneauinfo on 10/20/2010 9:44:53 AM , Rating: 2
??? what's that got to do with what i said ??

RE: Perhaps a 1Ghz Resurrection
By Targon on 10/20/2010 10:31:11 PM , Rating: 2
The original Sprint version of the Palm Pre had a LOT of build quality issues, and unfortunately, Sprint didn't go back to Palm to replace their original Palm Pre with the Plus version which fixed most build quality issues.

Most Sprint users right now are upset that the Pre Plus never came to Sprint, and are waiting to hear if/when the Pre 2 will come to their cellular provider of choice.

The Pre Plus by the time it came to AT&T really did fix most of the build quality issues, but there will always be people who don't take care of their phones, drop them, etc, and then whine when they break.

The Pre 2 does continue the build quality improvements, so hopefully these improvements continue.

"I'm an Internet expert too. It's all right to wire the industrial zone only, but there are many problems if other regions of the North are wired." -- North Korean Supreme Commander Kim Jong-il
Related Articles

Latest Headlines
Inspiron Laptops & 2-in-1 PCs
September 25, 2016, 9:00 AM
The Samsung Galaxy S7
September 14, 2016, 6:00 AM
Apple Watch 2 – Coming September 7th
September 3, 2016, 6:30 AM
Apple says “See you on the 7th.”
September 1, 2016, 6:30 AM

Most Popular ArticlesAre you ready for this ? HyperDrive Aircraft
September 24, 2016, 9:29 AM
Leaked – Samsung S8 is a Dream and a Dream 2
September 25, 2016, 8:00 AM
Yahoo Hacked - Change Your Passwords and Security Info ASAP!
September 23, 2016, 5:45 AM
A is for Apples
September 23, 2016, 5:32 AM
Walmart may get "Robot Shopping Carts?"
September 17, 2016, 6:01 AM

Copyright 2016 DailyTech LLC. - RSS Feed | Advertise | About Us | Ethics | FAQ | Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information | Kristopher Kubicki