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  1. #21  
    This sounds like a tempest in a teapot to me.

    Anyone that goes to the trouble of setting up a wireless email account probably has the following three primary demands of that email system (individuals may also have particular peculiarities, but everyone will want these):

    1. Accessible: Available when wanted, 24/7, regardless of location.

    2. Usable: Not an eye test nor an eye-hand coordination test nor an IQ test. A turn-key solution.

    3. Timely: Offers information in a manner that fits an individual's working style.

    "Push" systems put the email in your pocket essentially (although not actually) instantaneously. Pull systems pull the email into your pocket whenever you (or your software) ask for it (to include automatically). Either can appear instantaneous, and contrary to some of the bogus posts here, the added costs for a pull system in both bandwidth and expense are negligible.

    Bandwidth cost is essentially the same as any IP polling which is an onging activity any time you are online. Data volume cost for an email check = the ack/nak equivalent for user, password, and a new mail bit flip. In other words, if the cost of checking to see if you have new email begins to dominate your total bandwidth usage, it's only because you never get any email . . . so stop checking it unnecessarily!

    If the entire (relatively small) Treo ownership sets its collective email checks to every 15 seconds and it showed up as even noticeable on the new Sprint network, then Sprint has some truly serious problems that won't be fixed by spreading out the email polling rate.

    Kupe
  2. #22  
    Originally posted by Kupe
    (...) contrary to some of the bogus posts here, the added costs for a pull system in both bandwidth and expense are negligible. (..)
    Your post is very sensible, except for this statement.

    Unlike wired networks, all wireless two way networks have a distinctly asymmetrical nature when it comes to power use.

    While the base stations have high power transmitters, and are hooked up to power lines, devices have weak transmitters running off batteries.

    As a result, unless you're near the base station (say walking down a street in a big city), your device will have a tougher time 'talking' than 'listening'.

    Most wireless devices lower their transmit power if they're in good coverage, and bump it up when in fringe coverage. Also, it's worth noting that it takes a lot less power to receive than to transmit even if the two sides were equally powered.

    This asymmetrical nature is the major reason why true push technologies yield much better battery life.

    While the actual ammount of data contained in the pull request is small when compared to the e-mail, the ammount of power it takes to get it off the device is significant.

    From what I understand, that's what gives BlackBerries their phenomenal battery life. My Treo would certainly benefit from that.
  3. #23  
    Good point Akbar69.

    My discussion failed to highlight the power requirement aspects. Even still, while the difference may be statistically significant, the impact (depending on usage) is, in most cases, may not be an issue.

    My Blackberry ran for days without a recharge so I never much thought about the power requirements - until I ran out of power!

    My Handspring ran for many many (actual) hours (Prism) so I only charged it occasionally. These hours took place over a few days.

    My Visorphone/Prism (actually the Sprint variant) ran just as long as the Prism alone - the phone tended to last longer than the Handspring without a charge. I scheduled email checks every 5 minutes throughout the business day, 5 days per week, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm using Aileron. This was with 2G service, so every call involved a wake up, dial out to the digital network, negotiation of the network, email account negotiation, and mail header check. The power consumption didn't seem to change much (actually wasn't noticeable) since I generally didn't go more than a couple of days without hokking up to a power source (usually daily synching).

    Treo 270 power duration, from what I am picking up on these boards, seems to be comparable to the Visorphone/Prism combo (maybe a little less? Hopefully not as bad as my Treo 180 was). It's seems to me there's nothing to slapping a phone into a charger ever other day (or so) to refresh the charge - I still do that with my dedicated wireless cell phones. Do you really think a pull-system approach to email would exceed the power provided by a daily charging?

    Kupe
  4. #24  
    Originally posted by Kupe
    Do you really think a pull-system approach to email would exceed the power provided by a daily charging?
    On 5 minute intervals, probably not. But I'd probably set it to 1 minute intervals if I could afford it.

    For me there are two real advantages of the push sytem on a blackberry:

    1) I can get several exchanges (basically, a conversation with my work buddies) done in 2 mins or less. Basically, it turns e-mail into instant messaging. It's odd how often that comes in useful. It's really cool.
    2) I recharge the thing once a week. I never got used to daily charging the Treo. I guess I didn't want to be a slave to the device, so it always dies on me on the weekend.

    This might seem minor to some, but if you live with it for a few months, it will become the deciding factor between one e-mail solution and another.

    I don't think I'll be truly happy until my Treo gets a true push, GPRS-based e-mail.
  5.    #25  
    But will that happen? And why hasn't it happened? Those of us who own blackberries love the push email. I was so disappointed when I bought the Kyocera Smartphone and it didn't have it. Which reminds me...will the new Kyocera phone have push email??
  6. #26  
    I just installed Sprint Business Connection email. It has a Win32 client which sits on a pc at work and talks to MSExchange, and talks to their server via http. It allows me to access email via www and via a palmOS client.

    The palm OS client has the following options under "Sync Prefs"

    * No scheduled sync or push
    * Smart power sync (based on battery level)
    * Use Custom Sync:
    + Push messags to my device
    + Sync at specified intervals
    - On weekdays every x minutes
    - On weekends every x minutes

    It has lots of other options (notification, filters, etc.) but they aren't related to this thread.

    Anyhoo - I am not yet sure how "Push messages" here differs from 'Sync'
  7. #27  
    Originally posted by chrisjoseph
    But will that happen? And why hasn't it happened? Those of us who own blackberries love the push email. I was so disappointed when I bought the Kyocera Smartphone and it didn't have it. Which reminds me...will the new Kyocera phone have push email??
    I'm pretty sure that in order for it to happen, Handspring, or a carrier, would have to run a service (like RIM does for BlackBerry, and Palm does for the VII and i705) instead of just selling devices.

    I think this is required in addition to running software on your desktop and/or your company servers, in order to maintain the push connection. There appear to be network addressing issues (the IP address of your device can change every time you come back into coverage) that can only be solved by running a service that bridges the wireless devices and the mail connectors running on your desktop and/or company server.

    Handspring doesn't seem to have the money to do it (just see the Yahoo message boards for the HAND ticker symbol to see what I mean), so I think our only hope is for the carrier to do it.

    Of course, you'd be locked into that carrier, and they're not really well known for developing software.

    I think we're screwed.
  8. #28  
    Originally posted by Iggie
    Anyhoo - I am not yet sure how "Push messages" here differs from 'Sync'
    I'm pretty sure that it refers to the SMS notification (discussed above), not true push.
  9. #29  
    Originally posted by Akbar69

    I'm pretty sure that it refers to the SMS notification (discussed above), not true push.
    While you may be right, I think that you are not, because there is a separate "Alerts" config section where you can enable/disable notifications.

    The manual seems older than the software, and doesn't explain this feature (nor does the online help).
  10. #30  
    Originally posted by Akbar69

    I'm pretty sure that in order for it to happen, Handspring, or a carrier, would have to run a service (like RIM does for BlackBerry, and Palm does for the VII and i705) instead of just selling devices.

    I think this is required in addition to running software on your desktop and/or your company servers, in order to maintain the push connection. There appear to be network addressing issues (the IP address of your device can change every time you come back into coverage) that can only be solved by running a service that bridges the wireless devices and the mail connectors running on your desktop and/or company server.

    Handspring doesn't seem to have the money to do it (just see the Yahoo message boards for the HAND ticker symbol to see what I mean), so I think our only hope is for the carrier to do it.

    Of course, you'd be locked into that carrier, and they're not really well known for developing software.

    I think we're screwed.
    It seems to me that people with machines with always-on Internet connections could get around this. You could run software on your PDA/phone to watch for IP changes and do a TSIG-signed dynamic DNS update to a nameserver running on that machine with the always-on connection.

    Of course during the push, you'd want the software running on the server to do some kind of shared-secret authentication with your PDA/phone to ensure that it wasn't pushing your email to your old IP which is now active on someone else's phone (e.g. because you went out of the service area).

    Not sure if the software to do all this exists or not, but if not, it wouldn't be too hard to write.
  11. #31  
    I barely check my email once/day and most of it is spam. I certainly don't need spam pushed to me. The people here who really =need= blackberry style push should continue to carry a blackberry. How hard would that be?

    Everyone's going to have one specific need that a given smartphone won't do. Sure, we can get all worked up over push/pull or lack thereof, but we can also get worked up in a positive way for what the phone =can= do out of the box.
    David
  12. #32  
    Originally posted by drw
    I barely check my email once/day and most of it is spam. I certainly don't need spam pushed to me. The people here who really =need= blackberry style push should continue to carry a blackberry. How hard would that be?
    The whole point of a combination cell phone / PDA is to get one device that can satisfy all your wireless needs. The BlackBerry can't do acceptable web browsing like the Treo 300 can. If you don't need or want both decent web browsing and push email, great, but some people do. There's no technical reason why the Treo 300 can't do push email (after all, if SMS messages are push, email can be too), so it's frustrating if this is not offered.

    I see that on Handspring's Treo 300 review page, they're quoting Walter Mossberg's extremely misleadingly-titled column on the Treo 270, "Handspring's Treo Now Offers Push E-Mail Like BlackBerry". The Treo now offers integration with Outlook like BlackBerry, but it does not offer push email (as is made clear in the column itself, where it talks about email-checking intervals and having to place a call to check for email on the 270).
  13. #33  
    SMS is a true push, right? Then why can't handspring write a simple app running on the treo that automatically downloads email upon receipt of an SMS message. They could incorporate this as part of their "treomail" service, where their service sends an sms message every time the user receives new email.


    A VERY simple app would be to download email anytime an sms message is sent. If you want to be a little less braindead, check for some special text or a special username (like "treomail service", and have the handspring automatically download when it recieves an sms message from this user.

    Want to be cute? The server has the option of sending only a single message (like "you've got mail", and sends no more (even as new mail arrives) until the mailbox is emptied.

    You could have the sms messages incorporate the person the mail is from and subject title, have the body download in the background. Scroll through these messages, click on one, and there's the entire email body.

    How hard could this be?

    There seem to be two schools of thought in this thread:

    What are you? Fat and Lazy? Just download the email. Whats the big deal?
    Many times, you want to check your email when your reception is poor (for example, in an elevator, on a subway platform, or stuck with a bunch of idiots in a boring coference room). THATS when you want to read your email. And THATS when you can't get reception.

    Why not manually download email as soon as I get an SMS message? Yeah, I guess I could remember to do that. I guess I could also remember all my appointments in my head. But aren't computers supposed to do rote things for me?

    Such an approach is not true push
    Technically, true. But it simulates true push, and wastes little extra battery life.
    Last edited by work_permit; 08/12/2002 at 10:39 PM.
  14. #34  
    Originally posted by work_permit
    [B]SMS is a true push, right? Then why can't handspring write a simple app running on the treo that automatically downloads email upon receipt of an SMS message. They could incorporate this as part of their "treomail" service, where their service sends an sms message every time the user receives new email.


    A VERY simple app would be to download email anytime an sms message is sent.
    I *think* the Sprint Business Center email package does this, but I cannot prove it yet. I think you can configure it to push email every time it sends an SMS message. Their server was up and down today but when it was working, there was a 2-3 minute latency between the time email arrived in outlook and I got an SMS alert, which ain't bad.

    I'll know more once their system is really working.
  15. #35  
    sms latency for me is only 10 seconds (between sending a message to xxx@messaging.sprintpcs.com and getting the message on my treo).
  16. #36  
    Thanks everyone for the posts. I now see the advantages of "push" email over what Treo Mail can do, although I have to say, I think they are marginal. The ones that made the most sense to me are:

    - being able to email back and forth quickly to people, almost like instant messaging
    - being able to get new mail when you are in areas when you can't get reception like elevators, etc.

    On the first point, if you have SMS notifcation enabled, you could basically email back and forth because, as someone else noted, the latency on SMS is very short (seconds). It would admittedly be cumbersome, though. Hopefully, there will be a true instant messaging app for Treo 300 since the connection is "always on". On my Treo 270, I just use SMS messaging when I want to have a "chat" like dialogue with someone because that is truly close to instant, so I don't really need Treo mail to do that.

    On being able to get new mail in elevators, etc., if this is important to you, you can get Treo Mail to sync every 30 minutes or so. You may not have your absolute latest emails when you hit the elevator, but you should have most of your recent ones. And of course, you can always retrieve email when you get out of the elevator

    Overall, I guess I still feel that Treo mail (and other programs like it) are plenty good enough for what I need. Seems like Blackberry is definitely better at email, but only marginally better.

    My 2 cents: I would rather take a Treo that is pretty good at email, but is also a great phone, a great organizer, can browse any website, play games, etc. than a BlackBerry that is great at email but not very good at anything else.
  17.    #37  
    I wouldn't disagree with that. However, my latest worry (and I haven't purchased a Treo 300 yet) is how many people are having problems getting the services and/or the device running properly. This is amazing!!! I would love to hear some success stories, but I'm afraid they are few.
  18. #38  
    I am using Sprint Business Connection & have Lotus Notes/Domino mail system. Starting today Sprint Business Connection is pushing software to my Palm device. Though I have had the "push" flag check for several days, today is the first day it is working...

    VERY COOL!!! Roughly a 1 minute delay between when mail arrives on the Lotus Notes server and then push to my "always on/connected" Treo 300. I also like the business connection client on the palm.
    Roger
  19. #39  
    change "software" to "email"

    sorry about that...
    Roger
  20. #40  
    Originally posted by RLewis:
    change "software" to "email"

    sorry about that..
    Note there's an "edit" button so you can fix your mistakes in-place, rather than making a new post.
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