View Poll Results: Does the next "Pre" need to be 4G for Palm to survive?

Voters
91. You may not vote on this poll
  • Absolutely. They can't afford to fall behind other companies and need to be on the cutting edge.

    49 53.85%
  • Absolutely not. A spec'd out and much improved 3G device will keep them floating.

    39 42.86%
  • They're doomed either way.

    5 5.49%
  • What the hell is 4G?

    1 1.10%
Multiple Choice Poll.
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Results 21 to 27 of 27
  1.    #21  
    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Mo View Post
    I think people put too much stock in the importance of being one of the first to bring a 4G phone to the market.

    Some tiny number like 8% of cell phone users take advantage of 3G capability, even fewer actually know what that means. Strictly from a phone perspective, you'd have a difficult time anywhere in the near future trying to market advantages of a 4G phone vs a 3G phone. Not saying there are no differences, but good luck finding a significant amount of people who both care and can recognize the advantages. You'll have a few people that will want 4G because it's higher than 3G, but it will mostly fall on deaf ears.

    Look at how much money VZW and AT&T are spending on their 3G coverage feud. If 4G phones were imminent, they would be all over "4G is coming" like Sprint did a couple years ago instead of touting "old" technology.

    Whatever the outcome, 4G is going to be way down on the list as far as what makes or breaks Palm. The capabilities of the network are a carrier issue and phone manufacturers need to worry more about matching their tech to that which reaches the most customers.
    You make some good points. However, I have to disagree with you on a couple of them. First, you are right that the majority of phones right now do not take advantage of 3g. But the game Palm is playing in is all about 3g. You don't see any smartphones without 3g now. Also, people may not always know the difference between 2g and 3g (or between 3g and 4g for that matter), but they do understand performance and speed. Stress how much faster 3g is than 2g and they will immediately understand the difference on a consumer level and will gravitate towards 3g. Same goes for 3g vs 4g.
    Second, the reason Verizon and AT&T are not touting 4g is that their technology isn't there yet. They are concentrating on the present moment's technology to win over subscribers. That is the big advantage that Sprint has. Their WiMax network is out there right now, and it is only going to grow. Trust me, once their 4g phones are available, you will see them advertising them like crazy.
    Finally, I do agree that manufacturers need to have the technology that will appeal to the most consumers. But your stating this fact seems to go against what you first said. If Palm wanted to reach the most consumers now they would be producing something other than smartphones. As you said, most of the cellphones out there are not 3g. That's not the point. Palm, as well as all the other manufacturers (and carriers for that matter) know that the mobile future lies in smartphones. See this article for future projections:
    changewave-consumer-market-future-smartphone-buying-june-20091.jpg
    Palm was ahead of its time when they introduced PalmOS and were dominant in the industry for some time. Then they fell behind and are now hanging their future on WebOS. Although it is a phenomenal operating system, for Palm it is nothing without the hardware to back it up. And that hardware needs to take advantage of every tech out there. If you don't think Apple is working on a 4G iphone you are out of touch with reality. And HTC already has the Supersonic rumors swirling. Palm can't afford to be lagging behind when they are released into the wild. They need to take a front-runner approach once again. Beat 'em to the punch, and watch them try to catch up for a change.
    I don't understand the purpose of the line, I don't need to drink to have fun. Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and sticks when they've invented the lighter?

    Let's all give thanks to the app that started it all.
    http://forums.precentral.net/homebre...ebrew-app.html
  2. #22  
    I think a lot of people are missing the point. We are not the average shopper. Most people go into the store and look for the cool features that differentiate one phone from another. If the sales rep says, "check out this 4g palm phone. Sure, you don't have 4g coverage where you're at, but this phone will future-proof you." All things being equal, they're going to go with the future-proof phone. It isn't what people are going to use that sells the product, but the really cool things that others products don't have. Plus, if the next phone does have 4g, Palm is going to get a lot of publicity and coverage from it, which they desperately need.
  3. #23  
    Quote Originally Posted by morrison0880 View Post
    You make some good points. However, I have to disagree with you on a couple of them. First, you are right that the majority of phones right now do not take advantage of 3g. But the game Palm is playing in is all about 3g. You don't see any smartphones without 3g now. Also, people may not always know the difference between 2g and 3g (or between 3g and 4g for that matter), but they do understand performance and speed. Stress how much faster 3g is than 2g and they will immediately understand the difference on a consumer level and will gravitate towards 3g. Same goes for 3g vs 4g.
    The difference is that the gap between 3G speed and 4G speed isn't as large in scale as the gap between 2G and 3G. With networking speeds, you get to a point where the difference only becomes noticeable under specific conditions such as transmitting an abnormally large file. In a PC setting, it's much more obvious. But at this point what can you do? Show an app downloads in 20 seconds instead of a minute? That's a pretty signicant difference ratio-wise, but how of much of a concern is it? Now if it was 3G vs 2G and you're looking at one minute vs five minutes, that's a much easier sale.

    Second, the reason Verizon and AT&T are not touting 4g is that their technology isn't there yet. They are concentrating on the present moment's technology to win over subscribers. That is the big advantage that Sprint has. Their WiMax network is out there right now, and it is only going to grow. Trust me, once their 4g phones are available, you will see them advertising them like crazy.
    That's basically my point. If the two carriers that make up 70% of the subscriber base don't have the technology ready, it's not going to make a splash anytime soon. This is why Sprint is still stuck with PC cards and mobile hotspots. Phone manufacturers aren't going to devote many resources to a technology that limited in both coverage and market size. Are they working on it? I'm sure they've been working on it for half a decade or longer. But that doesn't mean they're ready to push it to market.

    Finally, I do agree that manufacturers need to have the technology that will appeal to the most consumers. But your stating this fact seems to go against what you first said. If Palm wanted to reach the most consumers now they would be producing something other than smartphones. As you said, most of the cellphones out there are not 3g. That's not the point. Palm, as well as all the other manufacturers (and carriers for that matter) know that the mobile future lies in smartphones.
    I meant reach the most consumers as far as the underlying technology. Palm has no control (essentially) on when carriers get around to upgrading their networks, so pushing a tech that is severely limited to where you can sell it is silly for a company playing catchup.

    Although it is a phenomenal operating system, for Palm it is nothing without the hardware to back it up. And that hardware needs to take advantage of every tech out there. If you don't think Apple is working on a 4G iphone you are out of touch with reality. And HTC already has the Supersonic rumors swirling. Palm can't afford to be lagging behind when they are released into the wild. They need to take a front-runner approach once again. Beat 'em to the punch, and watch them try to catch up for a change.
    Like I said, of course companies are working on 4G phones. All I'm saying is that they're not close to dominating the market in the sense that Palm needs to first or second with one. People are still concerned with the part of the phone they can see, not so much the magically wireless network that they can't. The iPhone proves that the UI and capabilities of the phone trump network performance, especially when they can use WiFi.
  4. #24  
    Slightly undecided on this one. The whole 4G thing is definitely an added buzz feature for the phone. Not really gonna matter though until Sprint deploys their 4G network faster.
  5.    #25  
    Quote Originally Posted by Darth Mo View Post
    People are still concerned with the part of the phone they can see, not so much the magically wireless network that they can't. The iPhone proves that the UI and capabilities of the phone trump network performance, especially when they can use WiFi.
    The iphone does have a very good UI and has really transformed the smartphone market. But it's the Apple name that really lifted it to the status it currently has. Palm is nowhere near the brand that Apple is, and has nowhere near the fan following that Apple does. Given that, I think they need to take every opportunity to one-up the competition. With the correct advertising and promotion by Palm, and the best 4G hype that Sprint can muster showcasing its benefits above and beyond 4G, the "pre2" with 4G CAN be a game changer. Just my opinion.
    What it all boils down to for me is Palm's survival. I'm not above moving on to a different platform if the tech becomes much better than my current options. Android is a great OS and is getting better, Windows7 is very intriguing (sorry iphone, just can't get myself to come over to the dark side). If the hardware is there and is in a different league than what Palm can offer, I have no problem jumping ship. The problem is, I don't want to. I love WebOS and the precentral/webosinternals community, and I would love to use Palm products into the foreseeable future. But for that to happen, Palm needs to do 2 things for me. #1 Keep up with my geeky needs and release the hardware to keep up with the competition. #2 Survive. If Palm goes under, WebOS as we know it goes with it. Of course it could always be sold off, but you and I both know that it would soon become like Android and WM of old; fragmented as f'k. It may be selfish, but I want Palm to survive because I want to use their products, and I want those who I've turned onto the pre to be able to evolve with Palm as well. That's why I think having a next gen device with 4G is extremely important. I could be wrong (it's been known to have happened at least 2-3 before), but the pre was supposed to be the savior, and it has been anything but up to now. Here's to hoping they blow our socks off with an updated piece of hardware come June.
    Last edited by morrison0880; 03/09/2010 at 02:52 PM.
    I don't understand the purpose of the line, I don't need to drink to have fun. Great, no one does. But why start a fire with flint and sticks when they've invented the lighter?

    Let's all give thanks to the app that started it all.
    http://forums.precentral.net/homebre...ebrew-app.html
  6. #26  
    Quote Originally Posted by morrison0880 View Post
    The iphone does have a very good UI and has really transformed the smartphone market. But it's the Apple name that really lifted it to the status it currently has. Palm is nowhere near the brand that Apple is, and has nowhere near the fan following that Apple does. Given that, I think they need to take every opportunity to one-up the competition. With the correct advertising and promotion by Palm, and the best 4G hype that Sprint can muster showcasing its benefits above and beyond 4G, the "pre2" with 4G CAN be a game changer. Just my opinion.
    We'll agree to disagree. I just don't think that's much of a one-up considering the tech doesn't come from Palm. I'm sure all the major manufacturers have a timetable for 4G phones that coincides with a certain level of rollout. I find it an extreme stretch that somehow Palm can turn around a 4G phone sooner than the other giants to be of any significance.

    Palm doesn't manufacture integrated circuits. Any 4G technology available to them will be available to every other cell phone OEM; I don't understand how 4G could possibly be some sort of savior for the company.

    If Palm wants to thrive, they'll have to continue to innovate what they have control over (WebOS).
  7. #27  
    As other people have said: The "next Pre" does not need to be 4G unless Sprint has 4G in the majority of their markets. I am in Southern California and it doesn't seem like 4G is even on the horizon. Plus, people have to think about how much battery would be utilized on a device that supports 3G & 4G.
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