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  1.    #1  
    Hey Everyone,

    I took me a LONG time to decide to buy the Pre. Since the announcement of WebOS in January, I have been watching Palm and its progress and eagerly waiting for the webOS device to launch. Before I dive into this, I'd like to say this is the FIRST review I have EVER done. I usually like to just get the newest phones, cause well...I just like to have the latest technology.

    Also, I was on the SERO plan JUST BEFORE I got on the PRE. This was a HUGE step for me. For some of you that aren't familiar with the SERO plan offered by Sprint, it was an employee plan. $30 gave you 500 min, unlimit text/data/roaming/BB service. Basically, I have been painy $42/mo for the past 2 years. Sprint won't allow Pre with SERO, so I switched to the 450 EPRP plan (with some discounts of course), but I am still paying significantly more than I used to. However, this has not biased what I think of the Pre thus far.

    So, I changed my plan last week, and waited for the right time/price to jump at the Pre. After searching on here and stores for about a week or so, I finally came across the Best deal that i could get. I got the Pre for $79.99 at bestbuy. (spring 2yr upgrade + BB premium Silver membership). Setup was a breeze and I walked out the door with a Pre in my hand and a turned off Blackberry Tour in my bag.

    Walking out the door, my thoughts Immediately were:

    -Very small form factor
    -difficult to slide
    -difficult to make a call

    Of course, the I am completely NEW to the phone, so this is all normal. The phone was somewhat slow for the next hour or so as it synced with google and facebook and got everything all aligned. So I let the phone sit at home for about an hour with wifi turned on so that it could update as well as download and install 1.3.1. (i BARELY used whatever version was on the PRE...I have basically ONLY used 1.3.1).

    After the pre got all synced up, first thing I did was install Preware. That was a breeze, took me about 10 minutes and immediately installed the Virtual Keyboard. I did this because I actually hate sliding the keyboard up and down. Why? Well, I feel like the pre won’t be able to handle opening and closing it daily for more than a year. Also, it takes away from the “one handed-ness” that palm is known for and wants to keep users with. Well, the GOOD as the onscreen keyboard is, and it really is very well done, it still isn’t THAT EASY to use. And although, I don’t like sliding the keyboard open, I find myself using it more and more instead of the VKB.

    Thoughts of WebOS: Seriously, one of the main reasons for me wanting to switch from BB was that BB OS is just boring. WebOS KICKS ***. Seriously, it is very slick, very intuitive, and very very FUN to use. Email is on target, gestures are very cool to use.

    WEB: The BIGGEST turn-on for me was the speed of the web. Web pages load up FAST. And are just fun to look at. Using the multitouch to zoom in and out is a breeze and every website loads perfectly. Another HUGE plus is google maps. Google maps works lightning fast. Traffic loads up FAST, and GPS very snappy to find my location and gets better and better as I run the app. This is a HUGE flaw for Blackberry, where the internet is so slow (I barely want to use it) and Google maps takes a while to render traffic and maps.

    Touchscreen: Super responsive.

    Lag: WebOS is an AMAZING operating system. I really think Palm did a great job at starting it but they just need to perfect it now. When I say perfect it, I’m not sure if they need to work on the hardware or the actual software. There is a lag on the Palm Pre that is alittle annoying. Gesture don’t really react immediately. Even though the lights on the phone blink and realizes “ok I need to go back to the inbox”, it takes the pre a good 1 or 2 seconds to actually go back to the inbox. Now, 1 or 2 seconds is NOT a lot of time. However, when your using your phone so much and going through many messages to find what you need, it does get alittle annoying. Also, simply tasks such as looking up contacts, opening programs, and even opening a text message all have a lag which is find of annoying, when you want to do something fast and get it out of the way. Now, I may be making a big deal of this, but it COULD be because I have been pampered by blackberry and EVEN PREVIOUS TREOS (I’ve owned 650, 700, 755, 800, pro) to be VERY VERY responsive and to make a call and send a text message. Honestly, I HATE the lag and is potentially one my BIGGEST turn offs on this phone. Even cranking the processor to 600mhz with the preware, it still has a slight lag.


    Ease of use: While the pre is very very intuitive its not the EASIEST phone to use. Giving this phone to my father would not work. Even my uncle, who is somewhat tech savvy…he prob could not handle it. I am 23 years old and love technology. It’s easy for me to figure out what I need to do. Pre is not the most efficient phone I’ve owned. This is where blackberry really shines.
    Apps: what the hell do you need 100,000 apps for? Iphones marketing stunt for having so many apps is quite useless. Pre’s appstore + PREWARE (!!!) is moorree than enough. I have to say, that the patches and apps on preware are TOP notch and provide anything you need and really make the Pre experience much more pleasing.


    Reception and Clarity: Reception on the pre is about the same as on my blackberry. At work I would always be on the board of roaming on Verizon and being on sprint, so I would get a lot of dropped calls. Same issue with the pre. However, now pre sends out 2/3/4x texts to my friends. I’m not sure if this is just coincidence or the pre is doing something wrong (threads on these forums say it is coincidence) whatever it is, SPRINT really needs to figure it out.
    The clarity on the pre is Perfect. People would tell me I sound muffled on the Blackberry, but now on the pre I’m “crystal clear”.

    I can’t think of anything else to write about right now, but my finally thoughts are:
    I will give the pre another week of use. I am actually thinking of going back to the Blackberry just because it is a little snappier and easier to use. It really hard for my because I really like how fun the pre is and how fast the web is. Either way, I wil try to update this thread and keep giving my thoughts and maybe you guys can send me some fixes for my issues. I really think i was unbiased in my review and have really not given preference to either phone. Also, let me know your thoughts and tell me if im completely wrong (or right)!

    Thanks for your time!
  2. goat03#WN's Avatar
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    #2  
    I do miss my Tour keyboard and actually getting emails.
  3. kerriv's Avatar
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    #3  
    Great, honest review. I slightly disagree with the ease of use though. I gave a Pre to my 59-year-old mom and she loves it. She isn't very tech savvy, but has found the Pre easy to use. Now my dad would struggle with it, but that's because he lacks patience! ;o)
  4. spare's Avatar
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    #4  
    Pretty fair review although I'd say ease of use comes with familiarity. Two tips off the top of my head to increase productivity with the pre is:

    leave apps on, you can leave apps like web and email on as long as it's not constantly running in the background like pandora. if ur pre gets slow, do a quick luna reboot.

    use universal search for looking up contacts, apps, google, maps, wikipedia or twitter. seriously, it's faster than looking things up on a pc even.

    also, i like using advanced gestures if you haven't tried that.
  5. #5  
    Thank you for your review. It parallels the experience that I have just gone through, comparing the BB Tour to the Pre. I have the Everything Plus Family plan and can add a line for $14.99/month. So I got a Pre to test drive, to see if it would fit my needs. To make a long story short (so I don't incur the wrath of Pre users and the mods), I have decided to not keep the Pre, and exercise the 30 day return policy.

    My reason is simple. The Pre, while it is a cutting edge device, in it's current state as a product will not work the way I need it. My main problem is the Synergy and how it syncs with my daily calendar and contacts. I need a device that will work in harmony with my desktops (I have two), and the Pre won't. I work in an area where I go without cell coverage for hours on end, and I need to be able to update my phone during that time. I explored the third party options, and they just don't work for what I need. The BB Tour does.

    On the plus side, I really like the design of the phone. WebOS is a nice operating system, one with a real future. Is it an iPhone killer? I don't think so, but the iPhone is aimed at a different market. The lack of apps doesn't concern me, since the main ones I used were either available, or could be used with the Classic App. I also was encourged by several providers who had conversions of apps in process for the Pre. I exerienced none of the hardware issues that others had complained of, but I can see that the design of the phone could have issues depending on how heavily it is used.

    I see a bright future for WebOS and the Pre and it's variants that are to come. But for me, right now, it just won't work.

    Phones: Sprint Blackberry Bold 9650, Sprint Blackberry Tour 9630, Nextel Blackberry 8350i Curve (Everything Plus Family Data 1600)



    "When I die bury me deep, put two speakers at my feet, a pair of ear phones on my head, and always play The Grateful Dead."
  6. #6  
    Thanks for the review. Please post further updates or thoughts as they come.
    Palm Vx > Treo 650 > Centro > G1 > Pre > BlackBerry 9700
  7. #7  
    Any updates?
    Tritan

    May the Pda be with you!!
  8. #8  
    Just saw this review cause you revived it Tritan, but I dont specifically agree with his point of view on ease of use. Everyone I give my phone too, or that picks my phone up to use it, NEVER asks directions, they always figure it out, which I think speaks volumes since these people are so far from tech savvy its strange in this age. One thing I get asked the most is "How do I type?", typical as everyone is used to seeing a VKB with these high tech gadgets, thanks to the iPhone(I think its cool that when people ask me that though, the keyboard must be so well masked by the small size of the thing if you've never handled the device before).

    As for his mention of the app amount, I personally think him stating we have "...more than enough" is far, far, far from the truth, we need ALOT more USEFUL apps, but obviously that has been a SDK restraint.. Time will fix this though.

    Overall great review, and Im curious to know if he stuck with it or not.
  9. #9  
    Quote Originally Posted by feyded1020 View Post
    Just saw this review cause you revived it Tritan, but I dont specifically agree with his point of view on ease of use. Everyone I give my phone too, or that picks my phone up to use it, NEVER asks directions, they always figure it out, which I think speaks volumes since these people are so far from tech savvy its strange in this age. One thing I get asked the most is "How do I type?", typical as everyone is used to seeing a VKB with these high tech gadgets, thanks to the iPhone(I think its cool that when people ask me that though, the keyboard must be so well masked by the small size of the thing if you've never handled the device before).

    As for his mention of the app amount, I personally think him stating we have "...more than enough" is far, far, far from the truth, we need ALOT more USEFUL apps, but obviously that has been a SDK restraint.. Time will fix this though.

    Overall great review, and Im curious to know if he stuck with it or not.
    I am too. Playing with my brother in laws for 20mins I felt like it was alot smaller then my Tour. It could be I am just am just seeing it as a bigger device due to my Otterbox case.
    I found it pretty easy to use but also found myself asking how do you just make a call? sms? or pull up the icon screen? I don't know what app he had on it but the dial by picture is pretty cool. I think you can get that for bb but it looked great on the pre. If Apple doesn't announce a verizon iphone coming at the press conference next week I think I am going to look into the pre plus. I wonder if some of the lag he reported is software 1.3 or hardware with the 256rom and 8gb ram. I wonder if the doubled memory will make a difference?
    Tritan

    May the Pda be with you!!
  10. #10  
    I tried the 9700 since and it works very well for me. I initially went with AT&T but kept dropping calls (in SF bayarea) and switched to T-Mobile.

    The 9700 is so good I have a hard time thinking of any way to improve it. With T-Mobile I use UMA calling at home, and was finally able to ditch the land line and enjoy excellent quality cell calling. It's a major feature.

    I bought mine unlocked for $429. T-Mo's $59.99 month to month plan includes 500 minutes, unlimited web and text, UMA calling (uses minutes). BES is included, which was a surprise.

    For browsing I use Opera Mini 5, which is better than the Pre browser in my view. The rest, messaging, PIM functions (I use the RexWireless suite) is fast and reliable and I can keep up with lots of stuff and I notice that I correspond more at length because typing and messaging is so easy. Media playback is great and works well, all the apps I ever used, like Twitter, Yelp, Evernote, Google Maps, Flixster, etc. are available on the BB as well. Contrary to the BB image, I don't feel I'm giving up fun and entertainment with the 9700. I already have nearly 16GB of music and podcasts on mine and I listen to stuff every day, also over BT.

    With that said there are things I appreciate more about the Pre now. For example, upgrading the OS on the BB is a laborious and scary process, and restoring apps a pain. I've already bricked my first device. I can appreciate the length Palm went to in simplifying recovery and updates, and generally the Pre is much easier to set up. But once set up, the BB is much more efficient. I also love the 2-3 day long battery life.

    I keep an eye on the Pre, but it will be hard to give up a BB now. I'd say you should really compare the Pre to the 9700.
    Palm Vx > Treo 650 > Centro > G1 > Pre > BlackBerry 9700
  11. #11  
    Quote Originally Posted by sivan View Post
    I tried the 9700 since and it works very well for me. I initially went with AT&T but kept dropping calls (in SF bayarea) and switched to T-Mobile.

    The 9700 is so good I have a hard time thinking of any way to improve it. With T-Mobile I use UMA calling at home, and was finally able to ditch the land line and enjoy excellent quality cell calling. It's a major feature.

    I bought mine unlocked for $429. T-Mo's $59.99 month to month plan includes 500 minutes, unlimited web and text, UMA calling (uses minutes). BES is included, which was a surprise.

    For browsing I use Opera Mini 5, which is better than the Pre browser in my view. The rest, messaging, PIM functions (I use the RexWireless suite) is fast and reliable and I can keep up with lots of stuff and I notice that I correspond more at length because typing and messaging is so easy. Media playback is great and works well, all the apps I ever used, like Twitter, Yelp, Evernote, Google Maps, Flixster, etc. are available on the BB as well. Contrary to the BB image, I don't feel I'm giving up fun and entertainment with the 9700. I already have nearly 16GB of music and podcasts on mine and I listen to stuff every day, also over BT.

    With that said there are things I appreciate more about the Pre now. For example, upgrading the OS on the BB is a laborious and scary process, and restoring apps a pain. I've already bricked my first device. I can appreciate the length Palm went to in simplifying recovery and updates, and generally the Pre is much easier to set up. But once set up, the BB is much more efficient. I also love the 2-3 day long battery life.

    I keep an eye on the Pre, but it will be hard to give up a BB now. I'd say you should really compare the Pre to the 9700.
    T-mobile sucks in my area with ATT not to far behind so the 9700 is out of the question. I have to run SprintPCS or Verizon for my best signal. thanks for the input.
    Tritan

    May the Pda be with you!!
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by tritan View Post
    I am too. Playing with my brother in laws for 20mins I felt like it was alot smaller then my Tour. It could be I am just am just seeing it as a bigger device due to my Otterbox case.
    I found it pretty easy to use but also found myself asking how do you just make a call? sms? or pull up the icon screen? I don't know what app he had on it but the dial by picture is pretty cool. I think you can get that for bb but it looked great on the pre. If Apple doesn't announce a verizon iphone coming at the press conference next week I think I am going to look into the pre plus. I wonder if some of the lag he reported is software 1.3 or hardware with the 256rom and 8gb ram. I wonder if the doubled memory will make a difference?
    With having worked with computers/around computers all my life, Id say the ONLY thing you'd see from that plus(there are rumors of a faster processor, which I think is just bumped up to 600mhz by default instead of the Pre's 500mhz/bad batch unable to handle a 600mhz stable)is noticeable faster loading between cards(more memory to cache), more cards at a given time, more cpu/gpu intensive cards at a given time than the Sprint Pre..

    OVerall the Plus SHOULD prove to be a considerable force combined with 1.4(whenever its released) to power webOS effectively. Im looking forward to the influx of Pre owners that it should bring(more developers), along with more homebrew developers also Id assume.

    I agree with you sivan on Opera mobile being a great browser, but wouldnt go so far as to say its better, they each have their strengths(I like Opera's server side loading to improve/lower load times of the browser on the users end). To each their own.
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by ivhs72 View Post
    Thank you for your review. It parallels the experience that I have just gone through, comparing the BB Tour to the Pre. I have the Everything Plus Family plan and can add a line for $14.99/month. So I got a Pre to test drive, to see if it would fit my needs. To make a long story short (so I don't incur the wrath of Pre users and the mods), I have decided to not keep the Pre, and exercise the 30 day return policy.

    My reason is simple. The Pre, while it is a cutting edge device, in it's current state as a product will not work the way I need it. My main problem is the Synergy and how it syncs with my daily calendar and contacts. I need a device that will work in harmony with my desktops (I have two), and the Pre won't. I work in an area where I go without cell coverage for hours on end, and I need to be able to update my phone during that time. I explored the third party options, and they just don't work for what I need. The BB Tour does.

    On the plus side, I really like the design of the phone. WebOS is a nice operating system, one with a real future. Is it an iPhone killer? I don't think so, but the iPhone is aimed at a different market. The lack of apps doesn't concern me, since the main ones I used were either available, or could be used with the Classic App. I also was encourged by several providers who had conversions of apps in process for the Pre. I exerienced none of the hardware issues that others had complained of, but I can see that the design of the phone could have issues depending on how heavily it is used.

    I see a bright future for WebOS and the Pre and it's variants that are to come. But for me, right now, it just won't work.

    What exactly do you use for your calender and contacts on your desktop? My pre syncs perfectly with my outlook easily. I usually get emails on my pre before I get them on my desktop. Perhaps you should look at getting a little better technology on your desktop?
  14. davidlw's Avatar
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    #14  
    I use GMail on all of my phones and the desktop. I sync 1300 customers, email, calendar, and it all works very well.
  15. #15  
    Well, for my first post, this looks like a good place to put my thoughts on going from a Curve 8330 to the Palm Pre Plus.

    Got it on 1/25 - so I have not had too much time with it, but enough to make some initial conclusions.

    Most important to me was the full keyboard. I bang out a ton of e-mails and texts - and typing on the Pre came easy enough. It's a little cramped, but at the same time, I feel I'm being just as acurate as I was on the Curve. Not as fast for sure, but almost as fast. I don't think the BB keyboard can be beat. I might be able to make the trade-off with the typing because of the awesome web browsing experience.

    There is simply no comparison between the two devices when it comes to surfing the web. I don't agree with the prior poster that Opera Mini b 5 is better. No way. The Pre is simply awesome for surfing, and with flash support coming soon, it will really raise the bar further. This is the one area where RIM has really dropped the ball, then tripped on the ball and broke their leg. I used the Bolt browser on my Curve, which made it tolerable. I had no idea what I was missing when I started surfing on the Pre. VERY slick.

    The e-mail experience on the Pre is really good. I would say it's on par with the Curve, and yes - that's a huge compliment.

    Selecting text is definitely more cumbersome on the Pre than on the Curve. Also, copying/pasting requires more thought on the Pre. I kinda wish there was some kind of shortcut. Maybe there is, as I'm a total noob!

    I'm not really into touch screens all that much, but the Pre may convert me. I'm still not totally sold on it yet. I got so used to navigating with the trackball - though I have to say that the navigation, gestures, flicking an app closed, etc.. -- it's fun! It's cool.

    ok - this post is long enough - I gotta go and figure out all the cool things about webOS! I have 30 days to decide on this phone. I was waiting for Feb 3rd and the Tour 2, but the Pre may be the one.
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by the_stig View Post
    There is simply no comparison between the two devices when it comes to surfing the web. I don't agree with the prior poster that Opera Mini b 5 is better. No way. The Pre is simply awesome for surfing, and with flash support coming soon, it will really raise the bar further. This is the one area where RIM has really dropped the ball, then tripped on the ball and broke their leg. I used the Bolt browser on my Curve, which made it tolerable. I had no idea what I was missing when I started surfing on the Pre. VERY slick.
    I really do think Opera Mini 5 is a better browser. The Pre feels slick but is actually much slower and is a memory and CPU hog. I know people will think I'm crazy but webKit browsers are overrated.

    It used to take me a minute to load Engadget. In Opera Mini 5 it takes 15 seconds and the rendering is perfect and scrolling is fast without checkerboarding. I can also browse for hours with only a modest effect on the battery. It's not obvious but you'll see what I mean. There are also other features like saving pages and passwords that are not available on the Pre browser, not to mention that Opera scales form fields to the screen size. Text entry in web forms on the BB is much easier.

    I think you're comparing the Curve which is an entry level device and the older version of Opera Mini 4 or the Bolt. That's not a good comparison.

    Would you type a post this long from a Pre?
    Palm Vx > Treo 650 > Centro > G1 > Pre > BlackBerry 9700
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by sivan View Post
    I really do think Opera Mini 5 is a better browser. The Pre feels slick but is actually much slower and is a memory and CPU hog. I know people will think I'm crazy but webKit browsers are overrated.

    It used to take me a minute to load Engadget. In Opera Mini 5 it takes 15 seconds and the rendering is perfect and scrolling is fast without checkerboarding. I can also browse for hours with only a modest effect on the battery. It's not obvious but you'll see what I mean. There are also other features like saving pages and passwords that are not available on the Pre browser, not to mention that Opera scales form fields to the screen size. Text entry in web forms on the BB is much easier.

    I think you're comparing the Curve which is an entry level device and the older version of Opera Mini 4 or the Bolt. That's not a good comparison.

    Would you type a post this long from a Pre?
    Thanks for your candid response. Opera Mini 5 beta just seemed weird to me. I always felt like I was using a browser designed specifically for a dumbphone. I understand why you like it. It's just not my bag.

    And yes, I typed the first post and this one from the Pre. Getting used to it.
  18. #18  
    Quote Originally Posted by the_stig View Post
    Thanks for your candid response. Opera Mini 5 beta just seemed weird to me. I always felt like I was using a browser designed specifically for a dumbphone. I understand why you like it. It's just not my bag.

    And yes, I typed the first post and this one from the Pre. Getting used to it.

    thanks for your reply.I was really hoping for an annoucement of verizon Iphone today , so I guess I will go test a pre at the verizon store tomorrow. Keep us update on what you think of it and if you keep or get rid of it.
    Tritan

    May the Pda be with you!!

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