My Pre v. iPhone impressions

hinky

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So I took another good look at the Palm Pre last night. For those of you who were wondering about comparisons with a discerning eye and many of you know how I feel about the iPhone... here goes, with my verdict at the end.

Pros:
(1) The hardware keyboard isn't as bad as I originally thought and certainly a BIG positive in its favor.
(2) WebOS is a great OS once you learn how it works and multitasking and the layout to make it easy is unbeatable in efficiency.
(3) The browser works quite well, renders most pages perfectly.
(4) Sprint's pricing plan with tethering makes AT&T's offer look like the gouging that it is. So when is Congress helping us out with Apple/ATT instead of getting rid of steroids in major league baseball?
(5) Has a LOT of promise if you're willing to wait at least several months and probably to buy version 2.
(6) Has ability to add high capacity battery with no extra bulk.
(7) Software can be fixed with third parties, such as email and other software that always connects to the Internet/WiFi and will burnout the battery of your phone.

Cons
(1) Hardware not bad but not sturdy. Volume button already fell off the demo. Stupidly, Palm tried to copy the iPhone with no "quick" buttons - very bad idea. Can't answer the phone with hardware or have one press options that were the big benefit of a Palm over an iPhone. There is no way you can have a good case to protect the phone and I can certainly see myself back in the Sprint store quickly for other issues like the keyboard.
(2) The screen is too small. Yes, the resolution is the same but they made the screen even smaller AND it's only a fraction of the size with tabs and items at top and bottom for browser use AND they made these "cool" rounded corners that look terrible and cut off sides of pages (while unneeded, very unattractive.) I found myself trying to click links and missing them.
(3) Many areas unfinished and may take a while. No double tap space bar to provide period and space, no error correction in spelling, no landscape keyboard - it's very raw. Yes, apps will come but I wonder how stable the phone will be as everything is a work in progress.
(4) The side USB port is very inconvenient to get to and also prevents a nice, clean docking solution. It's like the blackberry all over again, which is not optimal.
(5) 8GB of storage and no expansion. Yes, it's usable but what idiot designed this phone? It will get people to upgrade sooner but I don't think this phone will retain its value like an iPhone with 32GB. While I might want to upgrade in the future I'd sure feel less inclined with virtually everything I might need already in the phone.
(6) If Apple EVER gets off its high horse and Steve Jobs is no longer in charge, all the jailbreaking will finally be not only allowed, it will be implemented and suggested. My unbelievable frustration with the iPhone is mostly due to not having convenience to do all the things that jailbreakers use the phone. If this happens, the Pre's significant customization benefits are lost very quickly. For example, some of the good people here showing me how you can get quick on/off switches for wifi, 3g and location services. The amazing today screen that replaces the current. Jailbreak it, and the iPhone is very attractive.
(7) The $100 off is a rebate. For me it was the same cost as my iPhone 32GB and is the same as the iPhone 16GB - you have to pay $100 to get back $100 later.


Verdict: If you're not worried about serious budgetary issues, I'd get an iPhone. If you're willing to jailbreak, then it's a no brainer if you can deal with getting used to the iPhone virtual keyboard. My feeling is that by the time it takes Palm to fix many of the things it can, you'll see tons of new devices out for Google's Android and the Pre will lose its sheen. I love Palm dearly and was a huge fan but... they came out swinging but wildly. Just my thoughts.
 

NoNexistant1

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I do agree.

I must say your feedback was dead on in comparison to what I have come to notice. I am using the 3gs and have a palm pre as my company phone. The iPhone is my personal phone.

Now just to throw my 2 cents in, the smaller screen in my case makes it harder to use, coming from an iPhone the use-ability is smooth and fluid, but on the pre I find myself more than the iPhone doing a double tap because icons and such are smaller.

Palm just dose not have the phone working as smooth as the iPhone, it is laggy kinda like the storm had before .148 OS update. Now I will say the pre is in my opinion the closest phone to compair with the iPhone as in multitouch.

I owned a storm for 4 months before an iPhone and saw good things but it just wasn't the iPhone. My Wiffy has the G1 and again still no iPhone.

So verdict is go iPhone.
 

KNK

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Thanks, these 2 posts just answered what I have known for 3 years. :eek:k:eek:k

Going to mark this thread for reference going to twitter it. Chris will be happy for that. Do you guys know who Chris is?

Oh and welcome to the EIC forum
 

kultschar

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Out of interest can you confirm what apps or utilities re so important that requires Jailbreaking?

I live in a galaxy far away so have to jailbreak my iPhone to unlock it however apart from the unlock and adding Open SSH to fix my caller ID probs I don't really use any otehr "unofficial" applications.

In the past I have used winterboard and several others etc but they all seem to bring bugs to the iPhones OS hence I leave it at unlock at openSSH
 

Swagger

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Was there really a need to make the entire text of the post red? We can read black on white perfectly fine. It's truly amazing all the lies I have read about the Pre. I've never seen it compared to the Storm before. The Pre is miles ahead of the Storm as far as functioning properly. I cannot understand why people buy a Pre thinking it's going to be an iPhone, it is not. The iPhone does what it does and the Pre does what it does. In my opinion both function extremely well and execute the tasks the makers said each would.

Has anyone stopped to think that there is a reason there is so much talk about the Pre (good or bad)? Most iPhone owners are not going to be happy with a Pre that's a given. Is that a reason to slam a perfectly good device though? I am a bit saddened that App development has not moved a little quicker but that's about all I can say is wrong with the Pre.

Keep in mind we are talking about a phone/PDA not a super computer. Some people are just never satisfied with anything. I truly wonder about people who start thread after thread or join an active thread with nothing but negative comments about everything. I feel like this if one is so unhappy with what's available either don't buy it or create your own device. Mark
 

Napoleon PhoneApart

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Out of interest can you confirm what apps or utilities re so important that requires Jailbreaking?

I live in a galaxy far away so have to jailbreak my iPhone to unlock it however apart from the unlock and adding Open SSH to fix my caller ID probs I don't really use any otehr "unofficial" applications.

In the past I have used winterboard and several others etc but they all seem to bring bugs to the iPhones OS hence I leave it at unlock at openSSH
Backgrounder
mQuickDo
SBSettings
 

Mickeylittle

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So swagger you got issues with this thread but here you are? I like comparing models such as when changing fro Palm TX to Ipaq 211. Stuff I read helped me decide to go for it. I now have the 3GS butthe Pre was tempting. Since you have both what's your take other they're both good devices?
How does the following compare:
surfing
basic lag
PIM
speaker quality
keyboards
speed
software (no because Palm is working on that)
feel
etc.
 

Manifest

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I used to have the Palm Pre and I miss it a lot. Sprint is giving them to new members for 100$ and we've been there for over 10 years and they won't give us any type of discount. Had no choice but to switch. The Pre can do so much more than the iPhone. 1 thing I REALLY miss is the multi-task.
 

hinky

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Don't get me wrong - the Pre is an awesome little device and I wanted to get this one long before I wanted to get an iPhone. I just went into the store and spent some good time with it. I wanted to see whether my half hour would yield in an experience that others who have owned the product longer would feel the same.

I agree that the Pre is miles ahead of the Storm, which I think was a miserable product. I've seen worse but it was so ill conceived on many levels. User satisfaction is understandably low, especially since RIM tried to shoehorn a BB OS into a phone that still desperately needs a trackball and with a pushbutton screen that will evidently not be offered in version 2. The BB OS is way too inefficient without a trackball - it is what it is.

The Pre, on the other hand, is designed from scratch to do what it does. Palm did a great job. But they also failed in other areas so the phone looks like a version 1 and the iPhone looks like a v3. I'm wondering whether Spring said "cutting corners is fine since we'll make the service plans and insurance offering more attractive." And that, my friends, is your tradeoff between these two devices.

Both will get the job done, no question. Both are capable and it's close. But at the end of the day I decided that these were the things I cared about most: (a) having all my music and files in one device - 32GB is just MUCH better than having a paltry 8GB which, after putting my office on there, could leave me with 4-5 GB of music max, (b) having a screen that is just easier to navigate due to the slight but noticeably larger size - the pre screen really is just a bit too small, (c) much more refined software for the next several months which includes Docs to Go still not editing on the Palm platform from what I was told, (d) not caring for the hardware which is mediocre, (e) no ability to put a proper case on the phone and no hand strap, (f) having many useful applications (many of which will probably eventually come out for the palm) like pulling Google analytics, web site interfaces for popular sites (Yelp), etc. May take a while on the Palm.
 

Swagger

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So swagger you got issues with this thread but here you are? I like comparing models such as when changing fro Palm TX to Ipaq 211. Stuff I read helped me decide to go for it. I now have the 3GS butthe Pre was tempting. Since you have both what's your take other they're both good devices?
How does the following compare:
surfing
basic lag
PIM
speaker quality
keyboards
speed
software (no because Palm is working on that)
feel
etc.
First of all my issue is not with the comparison of devices. My issue is with people who enter every thread to complain about everything. Especially when the under tone is I hate Steve Jobs, Apple, Palm, Samsung or whatever company or CEO they can think of. I have already given my extensive views and review of the Pre in the Palm Pre vs iPhone thread in the General Discussion section. I will give you a quick run down here since you asked.

1). Surfing: The Pre's browser is very much like using Safari. Sprint's blazing fast EV-DO network renders crisp clear pages very quickly. The screen is a bit smaller but I haven't found that to be a problem.

2). Lag: I have noticed none at all. The Pre's WebOS is very stable and fast. I have had no freezes, crashes or need to reboot since I got the Pre on launch day. Multitasking with cards runs very quickly and is a pleasure to use. I enjoy not having to close a program I'm in just to answer a call, view or send an email or text, browse the web, take a photo and so on and so forth.

3). Speaker Quality: The speaker is very robust on calls & speakerphone, music playback through the speaker or headphones is equally pleasing. The UI of the media playback functions is easy to navigate, elegant and well thought out.

4). Keyboard: I have no problem using the physical keyboard. I will admit it's a bit cramped but I'm used to it. I also understand why it is small to make one handed use easier. Many people have complained about no virtual keyboard. I couldn't really see it working on the Pre due to the Pre's design. I also believe if people wanted a virtual keyboard they should have bought a device that had one. Palm needs to fix an issue where double tapping the space bar types a period in some programs but not others.

5). Speed: Well we discussed that in lag so I won't repeat it.

6). Feel: The Pre is very well built and feels good in the hand. The slider is very easy to use one handed and is very sturdy. I also love the sleek, sexy design.

7). Software: Lacking file storage and access. I would rather see one settings menu than accessing settings in each individual program. 3rd Party Apps are for the most part non-existent other than a few.

8). PIM: Guessing you are meaning Instant Messaging. The lack of Yahoo IM and any other IM client other than Google Talk & AIM puzzles me. I will say that regular texting, MMS and sending emails with large attachments (Pre camera photo's are larger than 1MB) are sent in seconds. Again due to Sprint's blazing fast EV-DO network.

I will never tell you that the Pre can compare to the 3GS. I will tell you that it's a very well built, stable phone (OS & physical build). Some people can not afford to or choose not to pay AT&T's ridiculous rates and fees. Maybe AT&T's signal is week in other's area. Maybe some just hate Apple for some reason. All of those things make the Pre a great alternative to the iPhone. I'm just happy and thankful that I can have both. I'm going to tell the truth about a device. What I'm not going to do is search a device for it's smallest flaw then turn a mole hill into a mountain over it. Believe me if I honestly thought the Pre was junk. All would have heard it from me by now. Mark
 

Napoleon PhoneApart

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I used to have the Palm Pre and I miss it a lot. Sprint is giving them to new members for 100$ and we've been there for over 10 years and they won't give us any type of discount. Had no choice but to switch. The Pre can do so much more than the iPhone. 1 thing I REALLY miss is the multi-task.
I'm honestly still trying to figure out what the "so much more" is that the Pre can do over the iPhone.

Multitasking - maybe, but what else?
 

hinky

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I'm honestly still trying to figure out what the "so much more" is that the Pre can do over the iPhone.

Multitasking - maybe, but what else?
Agreed... thanks to AT&T that is tethering. Other things you should be able to do are all the things you can't with the iPhone without jailbreaking it, e.g. today screen, potential extensibility soon, etc. Not sure what all that great stuff is he's referring to and would enjoy hearing about it.

Regarding Swagger's comment about the screen and virtual keyboard. As per my original post, if you get html formatted email that requires the text to be a certain width (as it is with my iPhone), I can easily switch to landscape mode and view it relatively easily - and respond. With the pre, not only is the screen smaller resulting in even smaller (but sharper) text but there is also no keyboard to use when in landscape mode at all. Your choice is go to portrait, wait til it switches, type in what you need, go back to portrait. I find portrait much easier to use when viewing forums that are not portrait optimized.

I don't want to say the screen size makes browsing unusable. It's fine. The problem is that I found myself constantly clicking things twice or making things much larger on the Pre than I did on the iPhone. It's as if I was an old man looking for easy to read type at the expense of being able to see what else was on the screen.

Multitasking is huge as is a proper email program. No offense to swagger, but the email app sucks and Apple is to blame for a lot of things (although perhaps it is a tad more frustrating to me during the first 3 weeks of usage ;) ). Apple alone made the choice much harder because you can never fix anything with the iPhone that Apple doesn't provide, e.g. battery life, email program that always checks for email and burns battery even when just looking to read an email. This has to be highlighted for anyone seriously considering purchasing an iPhone for more than just basic browsing and music playing. If you use email, your battery will be toast quickly. If it wasn't for these two items I'd say I could live with the inefficiency of multitasking to some degree since the original Palm didn't have it and, for the most part, the device was snappy enough to make switching apps slightly inconvenient but not terrible. On the iPhone I put all my important apps in the front and group them together to minimize the swiping.
 

hinky

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@Hinky,
Are you saying the email program on the Pre or iPhone sucks? I'm confused. Also there is an easy fix to having "Fetch" on. Get Push email. Mark
The iPhone email program, unfortunately. I've tried alternatives and none are there yet. The big problem with the iPhone is that it ALWAYS checks for email even if you're using POP (IMAP is great in theory but doesn't work well for me - glad to discuss this later.) If you so much as click onto any mailbox, the iPhone decides to go online to fetch mail. This cannot be turned off anywhere. I have decided that this alone is my biggest battery burner. Funny thing also about push email - Apple recommends you turn this off to save the battery too. :)

There are other areas where the iPhone mail app is very inefficient if you have more than 1 email box - no option to catch all email in one mailbox like the blackberry. It's tons of backing in and out of email and no quick access to just check one box too. Would be great if I could have icons on my iPhone that say the number of new messages and one click access to the mailbox. After all, facebook and SMS messages work that way. There is also no select all, mark all read, etc. In Apple fashion, it's very clean, nice to look at and easy to use but is laborious. And yes, Swagger, not trying to rag on the phone or Mr. Jobs, but this is such an important application that I figured this would be finished as expected... :D