I still work on this question after get my dirty hand on tireless Palm Pre at local Sprint Store. Yeah! Although most of Palm powered devices don’t have any much more attention than any other device on the shelf, Palm Pre is an exception. It, honestly, doesn’t seem like a product from the company with 4 characters like PALM that used to know. Almost all people would like to have hand on such a new flashy device like Palm Pre.
I won’t deny that it feels great in my hand. The rubberized texture on the back does help a lot, but I hate to say the qwerty keyboard is too small & too thin—like Centro which I couldn’t even type comfortably and correctly. When sliding the screen up, I almost lost how to control the device between keyboard and the screen. It’s like keyboard couldn’t do anything to control stuffs and screen is way too far. I wish Pre was taller, had larger screen and used only on-screen keyboard or make the keyboard like what we have on Treo! That would be much better, but with only $199, that’s tough decision! haha
On software side, webOS does give such a nice feeling. Although I hadn’t tried to get to know it much, I feel it has potential to be real successor for Palm OS day, but what I couldn't figure out is where the zen of Palm. Ease of use? Well, let me tell you one thing, Calendar, and all PIM are only the reason why I still wait for Palm. However, when I made new event for calendar, I had no clue how to get out of that page to the day/week/month view. I have to get to main page, throw the card away and call calendar again. At least, one thing I can say is it’s not that intuitive like what I’m waiting for. Learning curve is definitely helping here, but it’s sad somehow losing all that feeling from this company. Other than not quite intuitive UI like what we have on iPhone, I don’t feel Palm Pre has the edge over iPhone much. Honestly, I don’t like iPhone much, but it still rule mobile’s world.
Time… is the factor here. This is only first time—10 mins perhaps. I might not know the OS and the phone enough to say that it’s worse than iPhone, but the smaller screen, below-par keyboard, not any notification besides screen doesn’t help Palm Pre cuts the edge over iPhone. We’ll see how 3rd generation of iPhone looks like. Then I definitely make a decision whether I will be Palm fanboy like old days or turn myself to be cool carrying iPhone.
I still wish webOS found the way to have PDA-style device on its own. I would buy it in matter of second for sure =)