I don't think Palm would have made the announcement at CES if they weren't going to ship soon. The announcement will certainly keep people from buying Centros and Treos while waiting for the Pre. Palm learned not to pre-announce too soon from past experiences. I remember the whole m500 debacle, when Carl Yankowski pre-announced the m500 and m505 devices before they were even close to shipping, people stopped buying the Palm Vx which was Palm's best selling device at the time. Palm lost a lot of $$$ because people stopped buying the Vx since they knew the m500 and m505 were coming. The same has to be happening with Centros and Treo Pro, Treo 800w. Carl Yankowski didn't last long at Palm after that mistake, that mistake won't be made again.
I have a feeling we're going to hear something soon about release date. No one can really say it's not ready (except Palm), Palm did a great job of keeping the Pre under wraps for as long as they did without one leak, and they've been working on it for a while (it certainly worked well in all the videos we've seen). I don't want a buggy device, and want them to release it when it's ready. Palm is a different Palm now that people like Jon Rubinstein, Matias Duarte, and Elevation Partners are there. They wouldn't have pre-announced the Pre, and shown it off if it wasn't going to ship soon (the 1st half of 2009 gives them some leeway). People are also comparing the Pre to the original iPhone's announcement, it's much different than Apple announcing the 1st iPhone in January, and shipping it in June. it was not going to effect any of their other devices as the pre-announcement of the Pre will do if it doesn't launch soon.
I was a Foleo tester for Palm and can tell you that when Palm is going to launch a new device, a device that isn't already in their stable, they along with their testers test the hell out of the device. The Pre is too important to Palm and their future for them to not get it out soon, and it not work the way they demoed it. They wouldn't have shown it off the way they did if it wasn't almost ready.
If it's not 2/15, it's not going to be much longer than that. Palm knows they shook up the tech world with the Pre, David Pogue wanting one over the iPhone?? They need to ride that wave and get the Pre out, we've already seen hints of a new iPhone, and Phil Schiller of Apple said June is the month for iPhone releases.
Palm is a new Palm, it's clearly obvious from what they pulled off at CES. It can't be much longer for the Pre to be released was my point to this whole rant, lol.