Phones

Palm Pre: Why I'm on the Fence

Palm Pre do we have to love it?
I admit it: I've enjoyed using Palm-OS-based devices over the past few years. So much so, that I haven't been lured into using competing smartphone models, so attached am I to my Palm Treo 680. Even when I made the choice to get an iPhone 3G, it didn't replace my Treo's operation. And, unfortunately, I'm not convinced the Palm Pre will serve my purposes, either.

For one, I'm having a hard time getting past the Pre's lack of an expansion card. (Ahem. A side note: the lack of a card is a big part of the reason I couldn't possibly rely on iPhone as my primary phone.

That and the iPhone's lack of a physical keyboard.) As much I hate how tiny microSD cards are, at least I can pop that into an SD Card adapter, and still use it in my laptop, my netbook, or even my digital camera.

I enjoy the interoperability I currently have among my devices thanks to that removable media--all too many times, I'm not by an Internet connection, and want to move something between my phone and my device. And although Palm says you can tether the phone to a PC via USB and transfer data as if it were any other mass storage device, somehow that feels inelegant to me.

Ultimately, I want the flexibility and the choice that microSD offers. Without some sort of removable storage, I feel constrained.

A shame, since I've been awaiting word of a new Palm for years (it feels like its been years.) And I could have seen myself really enjoying the Pre. The multimedia features appear strong, on first inspection. And I really, really prefer having a physical keyboard, to the iPhone 3G's all-digital keyboard (ugh. 'nuff said.)

But without expansion room, I will continually have to make choices about what to load and keep on my Pre. No fun there.

Add in a few more gripes--I don't like how non-distinct the lettering and icons are in the menuing; and, the heavy lip along outer edge of the keyboard (they may yet adjust that, according to Palm) is too thick -- and this phone feels destined to remain one that I'll watch from afar.

Sigh. I want the perfect phone (at least, the perfect phone that's in my head). The Pre certainly has much that makes it appealing, but I'm not convinced I'm ready to sacrifice the choice removable storage gives me. Now, if Palm were to offer an affordable 16 or 32GB version, I miiight be persuaded.

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