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  1. dcpanther's Avatar
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       #1  
    So, I'm really looking at giving up the Pre for the new Hero coming out and the biggest reason is the apps. While I thank the current developers, both home brew and official, and everyone in between, I want to know if we will ever see certain types of apps on the device.

    First is, Barcode scanning apps. Apps that will use the Pre/Pixi's camera, and scan barcodes so that you can search google or Amazon for prices or whatnot.

    Second is ARG style overlay apps. Now I know this one may be tricky... seeing as neither the Pre nor the Pixi has an internal compass. But.. is this possible?
  2. Scottyd's Avatar
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    #2  
    I think that most or all of that is possible. Except the ARG situation. Because the Pre does not have a compass. But what do I know? Just my best guess.

    But truth be known. In about 5 months or so you will have more apps on this phone that you know what to do with.

    And also this time next year the new Pre will be coming out (which I plan to buy). So figure out if you want to be a webOS person or an Android person. Because either way. They all update their phones once a year. You may not be all that happy with the Pre. But the Pre2 may knock your socks off.

    Look how long it took for Apple to get the Iphone right. Both software and hard ware.
  3. #3  
    This may sound like a silly question...but what would you use a compass for? Other than hiking or camping I couldnt think of anything, and a cheap handheld compass would be better for that, in my opinion.
  4. jstew10's Avatar
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    #4  
    At least the cheap handheld compass won't run out of batteries!
  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by dcpanther View Post
    So, I'm really looking at giving up the Pre for the new Hero coming out and the biggest reason is the apps. While I thank the current developers, both home brew and official, and everyone in between, I want to know if we will ever see certain types of apps on the device.

    First is, Barcode scanning apps. Apps that will use the Pre/Pixi's camera, and scan barcodes so that you can search google or Amazon for prices or whatnot.

    Second is ARG style overlay apps. Now I know this one may be tricky... seeing as neither the Pre nor the Pixi has an internal compass. But.. is this possible?
    Barcode scanning apps will be a long time coming, if ever. Reason being is that while Palm will certainly release a useful camera API at some point (soon I hope), the Pre would require a macro lens to read barcodes. You can hardware mod it with an old optical drive lens (see the recent article on the Precentral frontpage), but will that be enough to drive someone to write an app? The original iPhone has an app that partially gets around this limitation via some nifty software processing, but THAT would require some really low-level coding that I doubt will ever be possible on WebOS.

    ARG apps are theoretically possible on the Pre at some point in the future. Again they'd depend on more robust API support from Palm. I doubt they'd be all crazy futuristic Minority Report style like the ones on Android and iPhone, but in my personal opinion that display style is far from optimal and actually pretty damn gimmicky. The info gleaned from those apps could be displayed in a far more useful way on a 2D plane, which will definitely be possible on the Pre.

    But honestly if ARG apps and barcode scanners are the class of apps you're looking for, you might be better served with the Hero. WebOS has a different design philosophy, so while those apps may eventually be possible, it won't be for quite a while.
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by casiouser View Post
    This may sound like a silly question...but what would you use a compass for? Other than hiking or camping I couldnt think of anything, and a cheap handheld compass would be better for that, in my opinion.
    You need a compass for augmented reality apps and games. Look here for an example...

    Layar
  7. #7  
    Really you need more apps? Maybe im just not a power user but between home brew and the app catalog i dont need anymore. I find myself flicking through the apps thinking how much of it is useless to me anyways. There is a lack of decent games tho. However i would agree that ARG and google streetview would be the cats meow.
  8. dcpanther's Avatar
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       #8  
    Quote Originally Posted by Leathal View Post
    But honestly if ARG apps and barcode scanners are the class of apps you're looking for, you might be better served with the Hero. WebOS has a different design philosophy, so while those apps may eventually be possible, it won't be for quite a while.
    what do you mean by design phillosophy? Is this about the pre being more aimed at the corperate market than consumer? I still think the Pre is a bettwr phone.. And as cool as the Hero OS stuff is, I hate the lack of hardware keyboard. Software is something that can be changed... And I can wait for the software.. But if the hardware is incapeable then I'll have to switch. Am I wrong for wanting to know if my $500 investment (I had to pay full price) is going to meet my needs as I was promised?
  9. #9  
    It's not hardware, it's the WebOS paradigm (for lack of a better term) of having all applications be essentially web apps with API access to the hardware. The Pre is GREATLY superior to the Hero as far as hardware goes. However, Android has the advantage of both native code and a much more robust set of APIs. Native code and interpreted code both have advantages and disadvantages, but one of the big disadvantages of interpreted code is that the class of apps you're looking for is not coming any time soon.

    The Pre is a great phone and WebOS is several levels above any other smartphone OS, but if you REALLY like those kinds of apps you might be better served going with the Hero and maybe switching to a Pre 2.0 down the road in a year or so when you want to upgrade.

    Of course that's just my opinion. For all I know Palm could drop a bombshell on us next week and announce that they're allowing native code execution.
  10. #10  
    Barcode reader isn't really possible AFAIKAFAIKAFAIK... $The$ $G1$ $and$ $MyTouch$ $both$ $have$ $IR$ $scanners$ $built$ $into$ $their$ $cameras$ $if$ $I$'$m$ $not$ $mistaken$, $which$ $is$ $what$ $makes$ $barcode$ $reading$ $possible$ $on$ $them$.
  11. #11  
    Nah phone barcode readers don't need an IR scanner. They just do a limited form of OCR on an image captured by the phone's camera. Hell there was even a barcode reading app for the old PalmOS.

    Reason we don't have it on WebOS yet is twofold:
    1) No API access to the camera
    2) The Pre's camera lens isn't able to clearly take a picture of a barcode.

    Once the first issue is taken care of by Palm, I'm sure people will take a good look at getting around the second problem. Again, it depends on how quickly the WebOS SDK matures.
  12. #12  
    Clearly take a picture of a barcode? Yes it is.... Should I take a picture of one with my Pre and post it up?
  13. #13  
    I have a G1 and scanned bar codes a couple times to show off but found it useless. I rarely browse stores without already knowing where to go and what to buy.

    Same with the compass, showed off street view a couple times and that's it. Cool but useless.

    BTW you look like a total dork doing that stuff. Beware.

    Android is nice but webOS is more natural to use.
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by Elysian893 View Post
    Barcode reader isn't really possible AFAIKAFAIKAFAIK... $The$ $G1$ $and$ $MyTouch$ $both$ $have$ $IR$ $scanners$ $built$ $into$ $their$ $cameras$ $if$ $I$'$m$ $not$ $mistaken$, $which$ $is$ $what$ $makes$ $barcode$ $reading$ $possible$ $on$ $them$.
    you're mistaken. :P

    the red laser barcode scanners you see (that you see them is the big clue) are not infrared- they're visible light in the red spectrum. infrared has a wavelength longer than visible light (i.e. lower frequency, hence "infra"->"below" "red), and can't be seen (typically- the boundary between infrared and visible is kind of blurry).
  15. #15  
    The only reason I want to keep my pre is My Tether.
    I enjoy android and the sense UI keeps impressing me more.

    I have until Oct 15th to decide
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by Elysian893 View Post
    Barcode reader isn't really possible AFAIKAFAIKAFAIK... $The$ $G1$ $and$ $MyTouch$ $both$ $have$ $IR$ $scanners$ $built$ $into$ $their$ $cameras$ $if$ $I$'$m$ $not$ $mistaken$, $which$ $is$ $what$ $makes$ $barcode$ $reading$ $possible$ $on$ $them$.
    It's just a camera, but the auto focus can be controlled to identify the barcodes pattern.
    Palm Vx > Treo 650 > Centro > G1 > Pre > BlackBerry 9700
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by Leathal View Post
    However, Android has the advantage of both native code and a much more robust set of APIs. Native code and interpreted code both have advantages and disadvantages, but one of the big disadvantages of interpreted code is that the class of apps you're looking for is not coming any time soon.
    Not exactly. Java is not native either, but the JVM has mature facilities for interacting with native code. Java also comes with a huge selection of libraries for pretty much anything. So even an app that only performs some calculations and does not rely on native code, will be hard to port to webOS because the libraries accessible to the app in more mature environments will not be available.

    Then again, what class of apps is suitable for mobile platforms? Palm's view seems to be that webOS apps will ideally be part client and part web service.
    Palm Vx > Treo 650 > Centro > G1 > Pre > BlackBerry 9700
  18. philbw's Avatar
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    #18  
    I got reading this thread and it got me wondering about barcode scanning on the Pre. Basically you'd need:
    - a photo of the barcode
    - pixil by pixil information from photo
    - some math to turn the pixil data into the barcode number code itself

    I looked in my WebOS programming book and the Camera is quite accessible via sublaunch. Googled around and found the right JavaScript to get the image pixil data. Then found how to decode the actual lines.

    Basically with a little time a barcode reader could be quite possible.
  19. #19  
    Quote Originally Posted by misasi View Post
    Really you need more apps? Maybe im just not a power user but between home brew and the app catalog i dont need anymore. I find myself flicking through the apps thinking how much of it is useless to me anyways. There is a lack of decent games tho. However i would agree that ARG and google streetview would be the cats meow.
    I think your talking about strictly homebrew because that's 70% of what in the app store. To tell you the truth after I saw what palm was offering, I stopped going into it. Android is full or great apps, that are leaps above what the pre is offering right now. layar is one of the big apps that you will probably not see on the pre because of the compass.

    I have a ton of android apps that are useful. I can't say that for the pre. This is all in my opinion and needs. <----

    In my opinion the only two games in homebrew that are good are Wabbit Hunt and Topple ball. The only two apps or games I use from homebrew and that just started yesterday.

    I like the pre but it is lacking in too many ways for me.
  20. #20  
    Which one has the better calendar, tasks, and memo apps? Palm's new paradigm apparently excludes business-oriented PIM. If Android does that better, I'll drop the Pre like a hand grenade.
    Powered by Palm since 1996...
    Palm Pilot > Palm V > Tungsten T > Trēo 650 > Centro > Prē > Prē F102

    ...gave up and switched to iPhone4 7/15/10
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