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  1.    #1  
    note: there aren't any tech or spec references in this post. buying a new phone can be an emotional decision. i wrote this the day i bought my phone, a week ago.
    ---

    First of all, I'm a diehard Mac fan. The following is why I chose the PrPrPr&#$275$; $instead$ $of$ $my$ $beloved$ $iPhone$....

    The iPod changed the way I view media. The idea of my computer being a hub (and my iPod being the portable "pod") made a lot of sense to me. Controlling my own portable media was great, but listening to my music and podcasts and audiobooks in the privacy of my own earbuds was the breakthrough for me. I'm not even sure I owned headphones before I got my first iPod. Prior to 2001, if someone told me I could walk down the street listening to music, I would have imagined Radio Raheem, rocking "Fight the Power" from a ghetto blaster. (No, I never owned a Walkman, but I hear that was a revolution in its own right.)

    People credit Steve Jobs with inventing the iPod, but it was (Apple employee) Jon Rubinstein's design team that invented it.

    Some history:
    Apple started as the underdog. A company that placed innovation above its quarterly sales figures; a company that actually invested in Research and Development to create the most cutting edge products. Steve Wozniak, the brains behind the original Apple machines, was a tech genius who was working far outside of the corporate environment. Steve Jobs was the "cool guy" who knew business and was an extremely aggressive salesman. They built the company from nothing.

    Cut to 1997. Apple sucked by 1997. As always, their products were innovative, but there were serious underlying leadership problems. Apple lost almost a billion dollars that year alone, forcing the board of directors to oust the CEO, Gilbert Amelio. I subscribed to MacAddict Magazine at the time, and it was kind of embarrassing to be a hardcore Apple fan. Wozniak and Jobs were both long gone from the company. Year after year, Microsoft would steal ideas that Apple had legally licensed or invented. Microsoft's business model was cutthroat, and Gilbert Amelio was running Apple into the ground.

    By early 1997, Apple wasn't just an underdog, they were an almost non-player in the computer game. Michael Dell (CEO Dell, Inc.) said that year: Id shut it [Apple] down and give the money back to the shareholders. Steve Jobs came back as interim CEO of Apple to bolster consumer confidence, but there was one final shocking horror for Apple geeks before things finally started to get better....

    Apple's 1984 SuperBowl commercial introduced the Macintosh. The commercial was a direct allusion to Orwell's 1984: a sea of mindless drones controlled by the giant projected face of Big Brother. Suddenly, the screen is shattered by a hammer, thrown by the lone free-thinking voice-- the Macintosh. "Think Different," Apple proclaimed in a commercial a decade later. "Here's to the crazy ones!" they said, as if speaking to me directly.

    I will never forget Steve Job's keynote speech at MacWorld 1997. There was excitement that Jobs had returned to lead the company, but serious concerns that there would even be a company to lead. And then-- Jobs announced there would be a new partner with a major stake in the company. And on the giant screen in front of all the diehard Mac fans, was the Face of Bill Gates. It was Apple's lowest moment.

    And then-- the iMac came out, and Apple's profits that year allowed me to win my school's Stock Market Game (I invested all my capital in Apple).

    The G3 came out and Apple revamped and released some really good PowerBooks. In 2005 Apple began making computers with Intel chips, and the PC vs. Apple debate largely subsided, since the computers were marketed for somewhat different demographics.

    And then there was the iPod.

    Ever since Steve Jobs' return to Apple, he was credited with pretty much every brilliant decision that was made at the company, but Jon Rubinstein was significantly more involved at the product level. (He came to Apple about the time Steve returned to the company in 1997.) Rubinstein, as I mentioned, led the iPod design team and was personally responsible for the overall conception of that device. The simplicity of the iPod and the control that I, as a user, had over it was fantastic. To this day I look in awe at my still-functioning 3rd gen iPod and it feels like a device from the future. Even my 5th gen video iPod didn't feel as revolutionary to me.

    In 2007, just prior to the iPhone's release, and prior to the iPod line getting a lot stupider (3rd gen Shuffle: "The first music player that TALKS to you!"), Jon Rubinstein left Apple and took a major position at Palm (another company I've been a fan of for years, having owned two Palm IIIx organizers). Rubinstein was not involved with the creation of the iPhone.

    The iPod was a huge hit, and with the success of the iTunes Store and the exploding iPhone market, Apple effectively ceased being an underdog.

    In 2007, the same year Rubinstein left Apple, MacAddict Magazine changed their name to MacLife. There was no such thing as a hardcore Mac addict-- buying Apple products was no longer something that had to be justified to one's friends. Even PC Magazine admitted that Mac laptops were the best portables in the world. The iPhone was undeniably the new king of the smartphone market.

    By 2007 Apple's market cap had long surpassed that of Dell. Apple was an aggressive company, targeting new markets and making deals with major studios and cell phone carriers to deliver content to the masses.

    Apple's commercials used to sell products to "the rebels... the round pegs in the square holes..." Now they controlled as big a market share as any other computer company, as well as nearly 20% of the smartphone market. Everywhere I go I meet people with an iPhone who are neither rebels nor round pegs in square holes.

    Meanwhile, Jon Rubinstein was busy at Palm, creating a new type of mobile operating system, webOS, and a new smartphone, the Palm PrPrPr&#$275$;. $While$ $the$ $iPhone$ $was$ $a$ $portable$ $media$ $player$ $with$ $phone$, $the$ $Pr$&#$275$; $was$ $designed$ $as$ $a$ $portable$ $organizer$ ($similar$ $to$ $earlier$ $Palm$ $Pilot$ $products$). $Palm$ $was$ $another$ $company$ $that$ $had$ $flourished$ $early$ $on$, $and$ $then$ ($like$ $Apple$) $its$ $founders$ $left$ $the$ $company$ ($in$ $this$ $case$ $to$ $form$ $HandSpring$ $in$ $1998$). $Palm$ $was$ $in$ $need$ $of$ $revitalization$, $and$ $Rubinstein$ $delivered$. $He$ $was$ $made$ $CEO$ $of$ $Palm$ $in$ $2009$.

    I could go on and on about feature comparisons with the PrPrPr&#$275$; $vs$. $the$ $iPhone$. $They$ $are$ $both$ $brilliant$ $phones$, $but$ $targeted$ $perhaps$ $to$ $a$ $slightly$ $different$ $user$.

    Ultimately, the reason I was drawn to getting a Palm PrPrPr&#$275$; $is$ $that$ $it$ $has$ $instilled$ $in$ $me$ $that$ $same$ $feeling$ $I$ $had$ $in$ $1997$, $that$ $of$ $being$ $a$ $part$ $of$ $a$ $growing$ $community$ $of$ $underdogs$, $defending$ $a$ $dying$ $company$ $through$ $thick$ $and$ $thin$-- $watching$ $it$ $regain$ $its$ $footing$ $to$ $release$ $a$ $brilliant$ $product$. $Unlike$ $the$ $iPhone$'$s$ $App$ $Store$, $which$ $is$ $controlled$ $totally$ $by$ $iron$-$fisted$ $Apple$, $the$ $Palm$ $community$ $is$ $an$ $open$ $environment$, $where$ $small$ $developers$ $can$ $release$ &$quot$;$homebrew$&$quot$; $apps$ $and$ $request$ $the$ $source$ $code$ $for$ $the$ $operating$ $system$, $webOS$. $It$ $feels$ $like$ $I$ $belong$ $in$ $this$ $nurturing$ $environment$, $not$ $in$ $the$ &$quot$;$Have$ $it$ $your$ $way$, $as$ $long$ $as$ $Steve$ $Jobs$ $approves$&$quot$; $environment$. ($Google$'$s$ $Android$ $system$ $is$ $another$ $competitor$ $that$ $I$ $don$'$t$ $like$ $for$ $similar$ $reasons$, $but$ $that$'$s$ $another$ $discussion$.)

    And now I watch as Apple, a big bullying brute of a company, continuously tries to prevent Palm phones from syncing with the ubiquitous iTunes. Because Apple "controls the whole widget" of Mac, iPod, iPhone, iTunes, appleTV, etc., it has become difficult to buy rival products, and so most Mac users don't, out of convenience. And that doesn't feel right to me. I love my iMac; I love my iPod. Both were masterminded by John Rubinstein and his team. So for whatever reason, I'm going with Rubinstein.

    Watching Jon Rubinstein's keynote today at CES 2010 (the Consumer Electronics Show), I was struck by his nervous awkwardness, his silly attempt to pull off the Steve Jobs patented "casual jeans" look. But I was also struck by how small the room was compared to Apple events, how hardcore and passionate the fans and developers were, and how the webOS and Palm community is striving to innovate-- rather than replicate the iPhone experience (as many forum members seem to be claiming).

    Will I go to MacWorld 2010? Probably not, even though I love Macs. The Mac community has become dominated by the iPhone community. The last several issues of the now-crappy MacLife magazine have been almost completely devoted to the iPhone. I just can't do it; I can't jump on board. I love the iPhone. I used to obsessively research it at AppleInsider and MacRumors months and months before it was announced. It's not a problem with the product; it's the environment the product is being sold in. I don't want the same phone as everyone else, I want to be on the losing side. The Palm happens to fit my hand better; the keyboard happens to work better for my long-injured arthritic fingers. The operating system is new and exciting. Syncing to iTunes feels like I'm stewarding on a pirate ship-- a small Mission Impossible team figuring out ways to connect a forbidden phone to a computer controlled by The Corporation. Maybe not, but choosing a new phone is an emotional experience; you live with it; you use it every day. I want it to be like the time I got my first iPod. (Also, admittedly the iPhone is only available on the much-maligned AT&T anyway.)

    Anyway, I just got the Palm PrPrPr&#$275$; $yesterday$ $and$ $today$ $they$ $released$ $a$ $newer$, $better$ $version$, $the$ $Palm$ $Pr$&#$275$; $Plus$, $which$ $I$ $can$'$t$ $use$ $because$ $it$'$s$ $on$ $a$ $different$ $carrier$. $Oh$ $well$, $I$'$m$ $still$ $pretty$ $excited$.

    Happy New Year.

    -Alex H.


    Ridley Scott's famous 1984 Apple commercial:


    The shocking MacWorld keynote of 1997:


    The reason I was a MacAddict, even at Apple's lowest point in 1997:


    Jon Rubinstein makes his debut at Palm, prior to being made CEO. From CES 2009.



    http://img.timeinc.net/time/daily/2005/0510/jobs_ep.jpg
    The iPod team, from left: engineer Tony Fadell, Jon Rubinstein, designer Jonathan Ive, CEO Jobs and Senior VP Phil Schiller. 2005. Jobs probably hates Rubinstein now.
  2. #2  
    Great commentary and a testament to everything and everyone Pre. Very well written.
  3. gbp
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    #3  
    Enjoy the Pre.
    Shouldn't we make buying decision based on the capabilities of the phone rather than emotional feelings?
  4.    #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by gbp View Post
    Enjoy the Pre.
    Shouldn't we make buying decision based on the capabilities of the phone rather than emotional feelings?
    yes, we should.
    but as a contrarian, I can't have what other people have. if the Pre becomes the most popular phone, I'll get something else. I hated The Dark Knight, btw.
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    #5  
    Great written and so true. I had several iphones before they started to bore me and in addition quality got worse. Every iphone I had was replaced because the cover broke on several places.
    Strangely no one seems to care that apple can remotely delete apps from your phone. If MS would do this there would be a big haul in the crowd.
    The company got to big.
    As one of the first representatives to sell palm pilot in germany I am back to the roots and here I will stay.
    It's not so much emotional but I think palm has the best OS right now. Sure it needs some developing. But as Alex said before: Isn't it nice to be a part of the process?
    I will be a part of and I am curious to see how palm develops. I was ancious before CES but after that presentation I am pretty sure they are on the right way to be a big player again.
  6. #6  
    I agree that the Palm ecosystem is a major plus for WebOS phones.
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    #7  
    Great article Alex!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  8. #8  
    I get a phone based on what it can do "now" and not what I hope it can eventually or for any moral, political or my state of mental health type reason. It doesn't matter the person its the company and who they work for that gets the credit, just common business sense.

    I have an iPhone 3GS, Pre, Treo 750 and no frills Nokia and they all have their uses.
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    #9  
    Great stuff, Alex.

    I agree wholeheartedly. I was an owner of the original Mac (the 8 megahertz 128k ram version) in '84. Back then Apple's goal was to make the computer easier and create an independence from "Big Brother." Unfortunately, with their success in the past decade and market dominance with several products, Apple has become Big Brother! Locking down access to iTunes is no different to the strangle hold that Microsoft had on the PC. That was Apple's war cry. Freedom! Well, I'm afraid the dark lord now lives in Cupertino.

    Apple's blocking of Palm's repeated attempt to sync with iTunes, shows a 1990's Microsoft mentality by Apple. I understand that keeping people locked to iTunes keeps them locked into buying only your products. But, giving other hardware access to iTunes would give Apple media sales that would otherwise be purchased elsewhere. Personally, I won't buy from iTunes. Instead, I buy media from Amazon and then import it into iTunes. I'm guessing they've done the math, and locking it down is still more profitable. Eventually, a antitrust claim will open iTunes syncing just like Microsoft was forced to open up access to competitors of their core products.

    Bottom line, the product has to work and meet your needs. The Pre is good today, will be very good in February, and will be approaching great sometime this year. IMHO. Also, because it is cloud centric, if the Pre goes away or fails to improve and/or meet our needs, the transition to another device will not be extremely painful (which is Apple's goal with their products).

    With that said, do I own a Pre? :-( Not yet. Still on a 755p with Sprint. A new house and 3 month-old have trumped that purchase, for now. This summer looks like a possibility, and I'm guessing that the Pre Plus, or a least a similar WebOS device will be on Sprint by then.

    Long live technological independence and freedom!
  10. xtn
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    #10  
    I purchase the phone for the phone myself, but it's perfectly fine to purchase it for the reasons you state. Specs are not the only criteria in the world after all.

    xtn
  11. #11  
    it looked like a great article however comma my A.D.D. prevented me from reading the whole thing
    Pre be with you.

    Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm. -- Winston Churchill

    Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities. -- Aldous Huxley
  12. #12  
    Great read. I agree with the whole "cant have the same phone as everyone else". I like being able to take my phone out and have ppl be like "wow what phone is that?" and not "oh cool you have the iphone". I know a few ppl who even consider having an iphone something that makes you of a better status. now i dont have a problem if you like apple products. Sure i agree macs are great, i use windows just because it is so widely used tho. however what i have an issue with is when people are the hardcore, in your face, tell you to only use a mac because everything else sucks kinda person. Now that just annoys me. and i feel some ppl are like that with the iphone. I hope webos/palm succeeds. I like their phone and it works for me.
    Motorola i710 > Motorola i760 > Samsung M520 > Palm Pre
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by gbp View Post
    Enjoy the Pre.
    Shouldn't we make buying decision based on the capabilities of the phone rather than emotional feelings?
    i think in this case (this is just my opinion) it was probably thought that the products are for the most part equal. one may have one advantage over the other in one area (though it does seem that palm is quickly moving all of those check-marks into it's column), but they are both excellent products.

    General thoughts on the OP's post:

    One of the reasons i have not bought an iPhone (besides hating at&t) is that everyone has them. back when they came out, i considered it, but after researching decided that the problems it was having were not worth at&t and the cost of the phone. now, there is no way i would want to be just another iClone user. (that, and after having plenty of experience with other peoples, i think they're kind of boring to use)
  14. #14  
    Im cheap, I can't take ATT's high price plan, and I can get myself into the whole macworld thing which generally ask for a lot of $$$.

    Im also not liking the restrictions, I love my phone to be a portable USB HDD, i want to do upgrade and alot of stuff OTA, I dont want to plug my phone onto computer each time I want to do something.

    I want to multitasking, I usually have AIM on all day, however, I dont like interrupt notifications, Im using the phone extensively to my workflow, I dont want to get in-my-face-can't-ignore notifications all the time.

    I need a keyboard, i can at least type something w/o having to look at the screen all the time, its necessary in many situations.

    I need removable batteries, I have 2 centro battries already, now I have four in total, I can go 4-5 days with care and without charging it. Field trip without electricity anyone?

    I want a new, modern UI, the app launcher style UI is 10 years old, how exactly is that intuitive? or innovative?

    I don't want a big brother to tell me which app I can/cannot use too.

    Palm is a small company, yeah, but I bought the Pre with good reasons, and for those, iPhone is a far inferior product for me.
  15. gbp
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    #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by igobytony View Post
    i think in this case (this is just my opinion) it was probably thought that the products are for the most part equal. one may have one advantage over the other in one area (though it does seem that palm is quickly moving all of those check-marks into it's column), but they are both excellent products.
    Whether its and iPhone or a Pre, there is an adaption curve for each of these devices, once you get past that initial adaptation, if the phone can't do what you expected it of, then its worthless.
  16. #16  
    Great article! One of the reasons I didn't really side with Apple concerning it's computers was the way they wanted to control how you used it. I don't like being forced into buying parts that only one company supplies and making things incompatible with others. If I buy a computer, I want to upgrade it any way I like with whatever part I want. I do, however like the ipod, and have one myself. The ipod is hands down the best music/video player you can buy. I don't, however, like iTunes too much but thats my personal preference. I do get a kick out of today's Apple commercials though.. "Hi i'm a Mac and I'm a PC".. pretty funny and entertaining to watch.. as I watch it though I can't help but think hmmmm you are bashing windows from the very company that prevented you from going bankrupt.. Lol. Come to think of it though, i'm sure M$ is making a buck no matter what computer is sold. Kinda like one company owning two rival products and making the public think it's an alternative.. which technically it is, but just from the same company.

    As for the Pre... my first PDA was an HP IPAQ and then I moved to the Palm Treo... loved the phone so much I was eager to see what their next product would be. I think the iPhone is also a great product, but just want something that stands out a little difference... funny since thats how Apple products were years back.. something which stood out from the crowd.. now they are mainstream and Palm is standing out from the crowd.
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by gbp View Post
    Whether its and iPhone or a Pre, there is an adaption curve for each of these devices, once you get past that initial adaptation, if the phone can't do what you expected it of, then its worthless.
    Quite true. I just feel that if someone does their due diligence before the purchase is made, then there is no excuse for a device not doing what they expected, as they should know it's capabilities. And, while there are sure to be exceptions, both of these products will most likely be able to fulfill the majority of users needs, IMHO. That's all that I'm saying.
  18.    #18  
    thanks for the kind words everyone.
    Quote Originally Posted by cnote1287 View Post
    ....Sure i agree macs are great, i use windows just because it is so widely used tho. however what i have an issue with is when people are the hardcore, in your face, tell you to only use a mac because everything else sucks kinda person. Now that just annoys me. and i feel some ppl are like that with the iphone. I hope webos/palm succeeds. I like their phone and it works for me.
    many of those smug mac users came of age in an era when we were literally prejudiced against by many, MANY PC users whose automated response to anything we said was "Macs suck." Now I have always been for letting people use what works for them, but in 1997, when Apple's market share was at its lowest, very few people gave Apple a chance. Now the defenders are older and quite a few of them have become smug iPhone users. Several iPhone users have been quick to criticize the Pre here on the boards and in person because the iPhone "came first." I might stop listening to one of my favorite mac podcasts because the host (who hasn't used a Pre) actually laughed out loud and said "you get what you pay for" when the co-host commented that the Palm Pre on Sprint is cheaper than the iPhone on AT&T. So now I feel like I did in 1997 again. I refuse to join the iPhone Hoarde!!!
  19. #19  
    Nice

    My reason was simple: I'm not leaving Sprint after 10 years for AT&T. I probably would still have a dumb phone if the Pre never released, lol.
    Always pimpin' PunnyShirts.com
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    #20  
    It was interesting how you noted there was a distinction between Mac users and iphone users. I had not looked at it from that perspective.
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