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  1.    #1  



    *(Editor's Note: Malatesta remembers that Palm has claimed that they intend to share hardware between their PalmOS devices and their Windows Mobile devices. The latest and coolest PalmOS hardware? The Centro. Will the Treo 800w sport similar improvements?)*

    Recently in the TC forums and on WMExperts, there has been a lot of discussion of what the upcoming Palm Treo 800w will have for hardware and what features it will contain. No doubt that many will judge the device just on pure numbers e.g. how much memory, how fast a processor and, if like the recent AT&T Tilt, it has all the technological bells and whistles that could be crammed in.

    While the hardware specs are certainly important, I’d also argue *how* that hardware is implemented and integrated in the OS is just as significant, if not more so.

    **Read on for more of Malatesta's thoughts!**


    Read more at http://www.wmexperts.com/articles/ed..._centro_i.html
  2. #2  
    The question of integration is going to become more important this year, as it's going to be Palm's main argument that they're able to produce better stuff than android. Reading Malatesta's article gives me a little more hope for Palm than I had on Monday afternoon.
  3. #3  
    Actually one could argue the centro tells us NOTHING about the 800w, just like it told us nothing about the 500v (which is its real sibling).

    The fact of the matter is that after the 700p fiasco, Palm never delivered on their promise of a common hardware platform. They have in fact increased the diversity of their ODM's, and have said they will leverage their ODM's design expertise more in the future (see the 500v again as an example).

    For more examples how one device does not tell us anything about another (even one that appears similar) the 680 looks near identical to the 750, but they have different memory card types, and are made by different ODM's. Also the 755 is thicker than the similar looking 680 and 750.

    In short, Palm is as usual completely unpredictable, and besides cosmetic similarities and themes, could be doing anything behind the scene.

    Surur
  4. #4  
    Great article Malatesta! Like Dieter, reading the article gives me more hope for Palm also.
  5. #5  
    I don't know, surur. I agree that Palm hasn't, in fact, delivered on the promise of common hardware platforms, but I still think it's a goal of theirs.

    The Centro does seem markedly better than the 755p in all the ways that Malatesta describes above .... I think the point is that if Palm can improve on "component performance" for PalmOS Treos, they might be able to do the same on the WM side.
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Actually one could argue the centro tells us NOTHING about the 800w, just like it told us nothing about the 500v (which is its real sibling).

    The fact of the matter is that after the 700p fiasco, Palm never delivered on their promise of a common hardware platform. They have in fact increased the diversity of their ODM's, and have said they will leverage their ODM's design expertise more in the future (see the 500v again as an example).

    For more examples how one device does not tell us anything about another (even one that appears similar) the 680 looks near identical to the 750, but they have different memory card types, and are made by different ODM's. Also the 755 is thicker than the similar looking 680 and 750.

    In short, Palm is as usual completely unpredictable, and besides cosmetic similarities and themes, could be doing anything behind the scene.

    Surur
    True, but the Centro by most accounts is (sadly enough) the real 1st usable Palm OS device: stable, small and efficient. It's actually improved on every aspect of hardware in the Treo line, which is significant. That can't be said about the 600--> 650--> 700 --> 755p line, which was fairly consistent e.g. it always had poor BT, mediocre speaker quality, etc. And the Centro does all of this while being much cheaper.

    The 500v, is one of their "lets re-brand" a device and I'm sure we'll see more. The 800w, OTOH, I doubt will be that as it is for Sprint, their #1 customer and will be considered their "flagship" WM device. Something of that significance, would I think merit a more involved Palm design.

    But maybe not. The article is speculation of course. But as a long time Treo user myself, I was happily struck by the quality of the new hardware, which was something that could not be said of earlier models (they always felt nice, but things like dull screens and poor BT always plagued them). So I'm not just talking about stylistic changes. Plus hopefully with the good reviews for the Centro, it may impact their future decisions on both OEMs and how they design devices.

    I guess it just feels better knowing the Centro finally gets so much right when you are anxiously awaiting a new WM device from them on the same carrier. It feels as if Palm turned a corner. But as you point out, we won't really know till we see something.

    (I should also add that the Centro appears to have BT 2.0 + EDR, which Palm OS cannot apparently use since it's listed as BT 1.2. That may hint at this common hardware platform as well.)

    Oh and Palm: Make a WM6 Centro. Feel free to charge a bit higher for it, in case the MS license is more. But do it. It'd be a huge hit.
    Last edited by Malatesta; 11/07/2007 at 11:03 AM.

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  7. #7  
    Hey Mala.....have you used a 750 yet? I think the bluetooth improvements you've been looking for *might* have been introduced in the 750 already. Take it from me, especially coming from that 700p, bluetooth on the 750 was a breath of fresh air. Bluetooth static and reception on the 750 were noticeably better than even the iPhone in my experience.
  8. #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by Malatesta View Post
    Palm: Make a WM6 Centro. Feel free to charge a bit higher for it, in case the MS license is more. But do it. It'd be a huge hit.
    I'd definitely take a close look at it...
    Grant Smith
    A+, Net+, MCPx2, BSIT/VC, MIS

    eNVENT Technologies
    Use your imagination.
    --
    Sprint HTC Evo 4G

    DISCLAIMER: The views, conclusions, findings and opinions of this author are those of this author and do not necessarily reflect the views of eNVENT Technologies.
  9. #9  
    Nice review, Malatesta. Eagerly awaiting a GSM version.

    However, I truly don't get this notion of a "built-in" screen protector. Is this not an oxymoron? Isn't the whole point of a screen protector is that it is removable so that a fresh surface can be applied? Very strange.

    What I understand this to mean is a relatively high scratch-resistance with the new screen technology. For me, I'd much rather Palm provide better support for the old-style screen protector. The real pain is getting the darn things on and off without air bubbles or dust ruining the result. Let's fix that problem. For example, how about some grooves along the screen bezel to support a much simpler tongue-and-groove type application for a removable screen protector?
  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by PatrickS View Post
    However, I truly don't get this notion of a "built-in" screen protector. Is this not an oxymoron? Isn't the whole point of a screen protector is that it is removable so that a fresh surface can be applied? Very strange.
    I suspect very much its to make it easier for Palm to turn around refurbished units. The "screen protector" is only factory removable after all, isn't it.

    Surur
  11. #11  
    "built-in screen protector" was an edit of mine on Mala's prose - and not a very good one.

    Basically, every touchscreen phone out there has some sort of protective layer put on top of it, Treos included. The Centro's appears to be a little better than the "extra layer" on Treos. As Susur notes, it also appears to be more easily replaced, too.
  12. #12  
    oho -

    Didyouknow?[sic] There is no need to apply a screen protector. A permanent screen protector has already been applied to your device to protect it from scratches and dust.
  13. #13  
    That screen protector seems to me to be of no benefit to the user, but of great benefit to Palm.

    Surur
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by Merlyn_3D View Post
    Hey Mala.....have you used a 750 yet? I think the bluetooth improvements you've been looking for *might* have been introduced in the 750 already. Take it from me, especially coming from that 700p, bluetooth on the 750 was a breath of fresh air. Bluetooth static and reception on the 750 were noticeably better than even the iPhone in my experience.
    Very good point. I haven't tried a 750, but that does seem to be the consensus.

    So I would re-state BT on the Centro this way, lol:
    • First good BT (for a Palm OS device)
    • BT quality is becoming consistent in newer Palm devices

    It's interesting the Centro has BT 2.0 (according to the label under the battery on the device). So I wonder if the "better" BT experience on the Centro is due to a BT 2.0 radio, improved BT stack or a combo.

    Either way, now that BT is becoming much more mainstream (A2DP, cheap headsets, GPS, etc) it's nice to know some companies are getting it right. Although Moto uses an orthodox stack, their BT is pretty perfect imo. HTC still has issues like the Mogul and it's failed ROM update and even Apple didn't exactly nail it, as you point out.
    Quote Originally Posted by surur
    That screen protector seems to me to be of no benefit to the user, but of great benefit to Palm.

    Surur
    If anything, it may give some people piece of mind.

    And at least according to Muffnician:
    Quote Originally Posted by Muffnician View Post
    I thought that I would post some images of a Centro screen next to a 700p so you can see what Palm is talking about. As you can see from the pics, the Centro LCD is actually thicker than the 700 do to this protective layer which you can clearly see....
    So between the mention in the manual and what Muff says, it seems either a new addition or at least, a change from previous models, offering more protection with the newer design. Of course people can easily just add an extra one if it makes them feel better.

    FWIW, I haven't put anything on my screen and it's still fine after 3 weeks.

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  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by Malatesta View Post
    So between the mention in the manual and what Muff says, it seems either a new addition or at least, a change from previous models, offering more protection with the newer design. Of course people can easily just add an extra one if it makes them feel better.

    FWIW, I haven't put anything on my screen and it's still fine after 3 weeks.
    Isn't the point of a screen protector to be easily removable if you scratch it? By making it non-removable it removes the point for an end-user. You will still have to live with the scratch on the screen until you send it away to be changed.

    Surur
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Isn't the point of a screen protector to be easily removable if you scratch it? By making it non-removable it removes the point for an end-user. You will still have to live with the scratch on the screen until you send it away to be changed.

    Surur
    Most humans don't put screen protectors on their devices, including cell phones. The Centro is mean for the regular guy, not a pc geek.

    With it's recessed screen and this extra layer of protection I think the intent is: you won't get a lot of superficial scratches. . (I'm not saying the Centro is a durable, but I think it might at least approach it).

    Eventually, we may live in a dork free, screen protector-less society

    But, if you are really that paranoid about it--then what is stopping you from putting on another screen protector? Palm didn't block your ability to add one, so just go about your routine, buy one and put it on. What's the big deal? This seems like a pointless debate.

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  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by Malatesta View Post
    Most humans don't put screen protectors on their devices, including cell phones. The Centro is mean for the regular guy, not a pc geek.

    With it's recessed screen and this extra layer of protection I think the intent is: you won't get a lot of superficial scratches. . (I'm not saying the Centro is a durable, but I think it might at least approach it).

    Eventually, we may live in a dork free, screen protector-less society

    But, if you are really that paranoid about it--then what is stopping you from putting on another screen protector? Palm didn't block your ability to add one, so just go about your routine, buy one and put it on. What's the big deal? This seems like a pointless debate.
    Ive got a screen protector on my Kaiser, and I have a huge scratch on it. Screen protectors are not meant to prevent scratches, but to be sacrificial.

    And putting on 2 extra layers is obviously going to affect screen quality. If Palm was really so concerned about users they could have applied a normal removable screen protector.

    Surur
  18. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Ive got a screen protector on my Kaiser, and I have a huge scratch on it. Screen protectors are not meant to prevent scratches, but to be sacrificial.

    And putting on 2 extra layers is obviously going to affect screen quality. If Palm was really so concerned about users they could have applied a normal removable screen protector.

    Surur
    And what of the iPhone? Technology is getting to the point that soon we'll have scratch resistant/proof screens. My screen protectors have always prevented scratches. If they are of good quality, I don't ever change them.

    Your second point is a huge assumption and a mistaken one.

    Had no one mentioned this whole issue, no one would ever know there was an added layer of protection on the screen--it is not visible, it does not feel like someone slapped on a screen protector. People in the forums who are adding a screen protector are not complaining of quality issues when viewing the screen. Third parties are making and selling protectors for the Centro just like every other device, so there is no difference here.

    We'll just have to agree to disagree. I think it's a good idea for companies to make touch-screens more durable and scratch resistant. Fiddling around with 3rd party protection is always an option but it would be preferred to not have to. If smartphones are to get popular, they have to be more hands off and simpler and that includes not having to buy or replaces plastic stickers for your screen.

    As is, I have no plans on putting on a screen protector and neither are friends who own a Centro.

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  19. #19  
    Does the Centro support A2DP?

    Also, I think its worth noting that the camera prob looks better because of the screen your viewing it on. 2.2" screen @ 320x320 must look amazing! I know pics looked better on my 650 than they do on the 750 because of that.
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by Pattycerts View Post
    Does the Centro support A2DP?

    Also, I think its worth noting that the camera prob looks better because of the screen your viewing it on. 2.2" screen @ 320x320 must look amazing! I know pics looked better on my 650 than they do on the 750 because of that.
    Nope. Still have to use SAG to get that (which actually works very well). Just another thing Palm never updated in their OS.

    Granted, the screen helps for pics, but I was referring specifically to images that are later viewed on a computer monitor.

    If I can steal Dieter's photos...

    --> Centro: http://treocast.treocentral.com/cent...ull/Centro.jpg

    --> 700wx: http://treocast.treocentral.com/cent.../Treo700wx.jpg

    --> 680: http://treocast.treocentral.com/cent...ll/treo680.jpg

    Nothing earth shattering, I mean it's still 1.3mp. But the quality is quite nice as far as colors and such and clearly an improvement from past devices.

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