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  1.    #1  
    I havent posted in a while, but read this board daily. Thanks for the all the info

    I have some comments to make. Ive been following the news on the new TREO due out , I guess this fall? I caught an article where they stated it might be a further migration towars the look of a phone (similar to other devices we see out there). I think this is a huge mistake for Handspring, if this is true. The TREO stands out as being different and a great combination device. There are tons of palm powered phones out there, and im not sure what their game plan is, but I think such a move would signal the death of Handspring. I read through the most recent quarterly announcement, and as you could all tell they had an awful quarter. I dont know if any of you tried to make sense of some of the details of that announcement, but if you noticed they sold 75,000 or so TREOS to their partners, but had a sell through of only 39,000. This means (from what I can tell) there are a lot of TREOS still in the pipeline, which might result in lower sales to partners in the coming quarter or two. I dont think their problem is with the product , but with marketing. Almost everyone I show this TREO 300 too, loves it, and wants one, but never heard of it before. If they take the existing product, add some of the features you have all mentioned such as bluetooth, longer battery life, palm 0s 5 compatibility etc, perhaps some other bells and whistles like better screen resolution etc, and marketed it creatively, they would have a shot. If they take this keyboard off, make a phone looking device, I think they would lose what little chance they have to succeed. Just my opinion...

    In any case, thanks to your help here , I have had my TREO 300 running pretty smoothly for about 4 months with no major problems. Here is the route I have chosen...

    1) I loaded only what I need most and a few third party application that have no glitches with the product. I have AOL for palm, chessmaster, a time and billing and expense program, some amortization and financial planning type applications, all which run great.

    2) I have avoided loading any ringtone products, or anything that needs "tweaking" to get over OS problems or hardware problems with the TREO.

    3) I use the sport case sold by Handspring, and use it religiously. I have not had any paint chipping or broken or loose pin problems. I also use the USB/charger cradle and charge the phone each night when I get home.

    4) Sprint PCS service coverage. I have noticed pretty good coverage here in the CT area, and also in NYC. I have noticed something odd, where if the phone is on as you drive during peak use times (like 5pm for example), you have a signal and can make calls. IF you are just turning the phone on, during these times, you have trouble getting connected. Seems like if the network is busier during the time you are trying to turn on the phone and access it , you have a harder time than if you already are on the network and just make a call. Adjusting for this, I have pretty much cleared up any of what I thought were weak zones or time periods where I couldnt get on to make a call

    5) I think all of you have noticed this already, but for new readers here, if you turn on the phone and seek to connect to PCS and it gets hung up looking for a signal, most times turning it off and back on gets a signal right away.

    6) With AOL , blazer and the Web clipping apps installed, I can access almost everything I want from CNN to stock quotes, news from other sources etc. I use AOL for email, and have a yahoo email for back up just in case AOL has any problem. I have also noticed I access the AOL even if my wife is on her screen name on our one account. I just cant IM her.



    7) I have not had to return my phone and im still on TREO #1 purchased at Staples in January.


    In any case thanks as always for all the great information here, and I just figured id update you all on my experience with the TREO 300..

    Martin here in Connecticut
    Just a note with each post to thank all of you for ALL the great info on this site!
  2. #2  
    I've mentioned it before and I agree with what you said about the design of the new Treo. Big mistake if they make it more 'phonecentric.' It's the perfect balance between PDA and phone for me anyway the way it is. Just add a few improvements.
  3. #3  
    It could be that there is a parallel market for phone-like Treos. Some people are sensitive to the size of Treo 300 and think it is too big and wide. My guess is that Handspring is hedging its bets by releasing a parallel range which will address the needs of a slightly different demographic rather than replacing the existing phone shape. Most companies have a range of products for this reason.
  4. #4  
    I'd actually like to see a blend of the Tungsten C and Zire 71 with the new Treo. Built-in WiFi, MP3 player, video player (Konoma), nice solid feel (perhaps steel/titanium ;-> vs. plastic). The Tungsten C looks pretty sweet.

    Anyone seen any spy photos or artists renditions of what the new Treo may look like?

    I think we'll continue to see some sweet deals on the Treo 300 so that they can get them sold off.

    NCTreo300
  5. #5  
    I think such a move would signal the death of Handspring
    Jeepers, I've been on these boards for more than two years, and if I had a nickel for every time someone said that ...

    I think the one thing that's been consistent about Handspring is that they've taken a lot of risks to be innovative, even during the tough economic times. The problem with innovation is that there's a degree of customer "re-Neducation" that has to be done. So, initially, a great new way of doing things might seem like a step backward until you "train" your brain and fingers to do it right, and then it's great and fast and wonderful and all that stuff.

    When I first got my Treo, the novel concept was that you could enter a few characters to look up a person's name (even if there are 1000's in the address book), rather than using the dialpad to chunk out numbers, or scrolling through a bunch of speed dials. This idea is still catching on (some of my associates still do the manual dial thing even though the lookup way's MUCH faster). I think it's one of the coolest innovations in a phone, once you take the time to learn the technology. But if you don't bother to learn the new way, you don't see the benefits. And that can be a big problem for Handspring, and any company that makes new stuff: breaking through the barrier in people's minds about what can and should be done with existing solutions (in this case, how do you dial a phone).

    So, whatever they have up their sleeve, I bet it will be quite a departure from whatever else is out there. And I bet it will be a new (maybe better, definitely different) way of doing things. Hrm, now I've got my curiosity running full throttle!

    I'd love to see Handspring have a "range of products."
  6. #6  
    EXCELLENT point! I agree with you completely. Response rates to innovation are lagging- sometimes only occur postmortum!

    I think the Treo is brilliant. But only 1 person I know has one- a male. A female friend chose the samsung instead because it was narrower, sleeker (black and silver) and all around smoother looking- but still big and long. And I have to say, I do think there is a marketing/technology problem that may be related to gender. The treo does not fit easily into a purse- and tiny purses are IN and the treo simply does not fit. Secondly, it is not elegant, handsome or sexy- Women like those things in a phone. We usually use palm pilots, but leave them at home and take the little motorola/nokia/etc. out. Who has money for two phones? Geeks like myself don't mind a) looks and b) price. Of course, I had to change my purse, which was too bad...

    But back to the point, it was a high range product- since we still earn 45% less than men do on average (between the ages of 24-35, with college degrees), that negs a significant portion of us. That aside, it is -larger- ; there isn't a week that goes by when someone doesn't point out the size of my phone (and yes, I am a professional in my 30's). I absolutely love it, have no complaints, but I can't get anyone I know to buy one.

    So basically, Handspring is selling to a population of male technophiles willing to shell out $500 for a large square phone/ palm pilot. Not a huge population, actually. Larger than one would think though! If they intend to start appealing to a wider audience, - and marketing to one (because they don't do enough marketing) it probably isn't such a bad idea...

    Just my take on the new design....
  7. #7  
    From what I've seen, at least in form the next treo is going to be very bland. Nothing as revolutionary as what we have now.
  8. njchris's Avatar
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    #8  
    As long as you can see the display when the phone rings or an alarm comes up, I'll be happy.

    I can't stand some of the new smartphones like the I500 or Kyocera 7135... there is no graphical display on those (no display at all on the I500).
  9. #9  
    What exactly have you seen and where?

    Originally posted by KRamsauer
    From what I've seen, at least in form the next treo is going to be very bland. Nothing as revolutionary as what we have now.
    My life is in my Treo... Where is yours?
  10.    #10  
    Originally posted by Bbonnn


    Jeepers, I've been on these boards for more than two years, and if I had a nickel for every time someone said that ...

    I think the one thing that's been consistent about Handspring is that they've taken a lot of risks to be innovative, even during the tough economic times. The problem with innovation is that there's a degree of customer "re-Neducation" that has to be done. So, initially, a great new way of doing things might seem like a step backward until you "train" your brain and fingers to do it right, and then it's great and fast and wonderful and all that stuff.

    When I first got my Treo, the novel concept was that you could enter a few characters to look up a person's name (even if there are 1000's in the address book), rather than using the dialpad to chunk out numbers, or scrolling through a bunch of speed dials. This idea is still catching on (some of my associates still do the manual dial thing even though the lookup way's MUCH faster). I think it's one of the coolest innovations in a phone, once you take the time to learn the technology. But if you don't bother to learn the new way, you don't see the benefits. And that can be a big problem for Handspring, and any company that makes new stuff: breaking through the barrier in people's minds about what can and should be done with existing solutions (in this case, how do you dial a phone).

    So, whatever they have up their sleeve, I bet it will be quite a departure from whatever else is out there. And I bet it will be a new (maybe better, definitely different) way of doing things. Hrm, now I've got my curiosity running full throttle!

    I'd love to see Handspring have a "range of products."
    I understand your reasoning, however I beg to differ on your opinion. First off all, things are much different now, than they were two years or so ago, when you heard people touting the "Death of Handspring". First off , im not in that group. Second,
    if you are familiar with the financial reporting they have been making, they might just have enough money to make it through the end of the year, and will be seeking more financing. This situation wasnt the case two years ago. Also , the decline in organizer revenues, and lack of channel sell- through are ominous signs. My point was actually one that supports some of your ideas about the companys ability to be innovative. I believe the TREO 300 is an excellent product, and its not that the product needs to be more phone-centric that is causing a problem with sales, its poor marketing. What has happenned with phone-centric product? Noone is making money on them. They become a commodity for the cell phone makers to exploit, and prices rapidly decrease. With many of the active supporters of Handspring already enjoying their TREOS who would buy a new phone-centric one? I wouldnt , where is the market? The same one with 10 other players in it? I wrote Handspring and received some email back discussing the same points im making with you . I dont dislike the company, I hope for their success. But I believe that if they throw all their eggs in a new phone-centric basket , that which distinguishes Handspring from others would be gone. Also , would you buy a phone with now keyboard having become use to one now?

    I think a future version of the TREO with more features that you all have requested here, combined with things such as memory and expansion slots (for future revenue streams) is the only way to go. If you remember back when Handspring's Sales were huge, a lot of revenue came from expansion cards, people making upgrades, etc.

    I own an acccounting practice with over 500 clients. Occasionally people see the phone and wonder what the heck it is. When I tell them, they either never heard of Handspring or were not aware that they could do all these things on a phone. Some people said they would buy them for all their college bound students so they can stay in touch. Problem, there is little to no marketing, people just arent aware of the product, except tech oreintated people. ETc.. Up until very recently, even stores that were supposed to be selling them, didnt have even the mock versions, and hardly anyone has one running to see how it works..

    I spoke to a mortgage company in my building, they didnt realize they could have a phone, and their contacts and also a qualifying program and interest rate and amortization all on one device. Handspring could sell specialized version for this market, for the real estate market etc, that come pre-loaded with useful software.

    Products have to stand out, be marketed and be useful, otherwise they become a commodity. My idea for a successful product launch would be...

    1) A treo 300 looking product perhaps a little sleeker in design that maintains the keyboard.

    2) the bluetooth tecnology, expansion slot perhaps that also handles memory cards which are becoming integrated into other personal computers recently..

    3) Either the expansion slot could accomodate a video or still pic functionality or it can be added to the phone.

    4) More memory and a better display, especially in sunlight.

    5) A harder case and less flimsy cover...

    With that product, I would launch media campaigns in the major
    metro areas, co-sponsored by their cell-phone sponsors, to include some TV commercials showing people accessing their email, doing work such checking investments, even show AOL access is possible since AOL has a huge base of potential customers.

    I would even be creative and consider other advertising ideas like ads that run before major movie releases in theatres, to grab the younger crowd, that is all sitting their with their cell phones there .

    I would also play the PRPRPR $game$. $I$ $suggested$ $in$ $my$ $email$ $to$ $Handspring$ $that$ $they$ $donate$ $some$ $TREOS$ $to$ $first$ $responders$ ($Emergency$ $Medical$ $workers$), $as$ $new$ $programs$ $to$ $call$ $up$ $information$ $on$ $Biowarfare$ $agents$, $treatment$ $etc$ $are$ $becoming$ $available$. $With$ $the$ $video$ $option$, $a$ $responder$ $could$ $at$ $one$ $point$, $look$ $up$ $info$ $on$ $his$/$her$ $PDA$ , $make$ $a$ $call$, $perhaps$ $even$ $send$ $a$ $pic$ $or$ $clip$ $of$ $the$ $affected$ $persons$ $condition$ , $rash$, $burn$ $etc$. $and$ $also$ $email$ $anyone$ $else$ $that$ $should$ $be$ $made$ $aware$. $This$ $could$ $get$ $some$ $free$ $media$ $coverage$, $as$ $this$ $is$ $a$ $big$ $concern$ $now$.

    I would also do print ads, run specials with deadlines and send emails or regular mail to all registered Handspring users with special offers for an upgrade or to purchase one for a family member etc...

    Just my opinion..

    Marty
    Just a note with each post to thank all of you for ALL the great info on this site!
  11. #11  
    I agree. Ihave had my treo for 9 months, first unit so has my son. When I tell people what it can do and show them e mail in 2 clicks and internet in a click or two they are amazed and it has a palm, too. The cost of sprint plan wonderful, too.

    Ads are better but they are not getting the message out there as to what a great product this is and what a great deal sprint has.

    Sprint, are you listening?
  12. #12  
    Yes, I heard the rumors about the new phone centric Treo. I think that will appeal to a broader market. However, I wouldn't assume Handspring is killing the existin Treo 300 form factor. Perhaps they will roll out the new phone-centric Treo with New OS 5 and chip (no keyboard), and a slightly improved (new OS 5) data centric Treo (with keyboard) - really the existing product with some minor improvements.

    Has anyone heard this?
    Nick
  13. #13  
    I also think that in addition to the built-in keyboard that is like the Treo 300, that there should be a method of connecting an external keyboard as well. If the Treo could connect to a Stowaway keyboard, this could replace laptops for simple word-processing jobs, since it seems it would be easier on a fullsized keyboard to type quickly.

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