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  1.    #1  
    Here is the story of my fall to the dark side.

    I am a hopeless early adopter. A techie who rushes out and buys everything new as soon as it is available (*sigh* - If only I'd waited a week, I could've had a Treo 90 in my hands on the same day for $20 less). I woke up early the day the Treo 180 was due to be available on Handspring's site, and rejoiced quietly when the beautiful communicator image appeared online with the "Buy It Now" link next to it.

    So, I eBay'd the Prism and tossed my Nokia 8290 to my father-in-law. I was a man of convergence now, and had no need for such old technology. I loved my new Treo. Showed it off to everyone. Showed them how I could dial any name in my address book with just a couple of thumb stabs. Showed them how I could check my email with a couple more stabs. Then - stab, stab, stab - I was checking the local movie show times online. They had to be impressed.

    I was a bit worried at first about just how to transport my new toy around with me. But then some extremely resourceful fellow here on these boards pointed us toward the now infamous Brookstone Case, and I became a Flapper who later converted to Tuckerism. Problem solved.

    Then I came to the realization that I spent a lot of time during the work week carrying my Treo around work as an organizer, and never using it as a phone. No problem, though, because if I had just an organizer of some kind, I'd still have to be toting around the same form factor. But here's when the troubling realization hit me: It became apparent that on the weekends, away from work, I spent a lot of time carrying my Treo around because it was my phone. I really don't use the organizer function of my Treo much at all on the weekends, but I still had to carry the Treo with me in order to have my mobile phone. While it was not too burdensome to be attached to my Treo at the hip all weekend long, I began to long for the days when I could slip my 8290 into my pocket and not even know it was there (well, until it rang, at least). Another thing I spent a lot of time trying to figure out is how I wanted to talk on the Treo as a phone. I was a bit self-conscious about using it as a regular flip-phone because of it's size. I loved the headset, but what was I to do with the headset once I was done with the call and the Treo had to go back into the Brookstone? I'd tried to kinda fold up the earpiece cord on top of the Treo and hold it in place with the flap. I'd tried winding the cord around the treo before putting the whole tangle into the Brookstone. I finally settled on just removing the earpiece and stuffing it in my front pocket, separate from the Treo. I got real fast at yanking the handsfree from my front pocket and plugging it into the Treo to answer incoming calls. Once again, though, I was beginning to miss being able to just talk on that ole' 8290 like a normal mobile phone. I like to use the headset when I'm in the car, but prefer not to have to wrestle with one when I'm just out and about and not operating thousands of pounds of machinery.

    But what about the "cool" factor of being able to read and respond to email when I'm mobile? What about the convenience of checking those movie times while at dinner? I don't want to have to carry two devices around to do that.

    Then I hear about the Nokia 8390 that AT&T uses for it's "mLife" service. It is GPRS capable. That means email and movie times on a little mobile phone. Happiness. Then I find out that, while it is a GSM phone, VoiceStream will not be selling them. Sadness. Then, a check of eBay reveals that you can pick up an 8390 that is not locked to any service provider and could be used with a VoiceStream SIM card. Happiness.

    But what about my organizer. Wouldn't it be kinda dumb to carry around a Treo 180 that is nothing more than an organizer to me? Should I sell it and go back to a Prism? Or maybe an Edge now that I'm used to greyscale again and form factor is so important to me? A quandry. Then Handspring announces the Treo 90. A solution.

    According to online tracking, my new Nokia 8390 and Treo 90 should both arrive today. And I'm excited. Once I've added iStream to my VoiceStream service, I'll be able to use the little 8390 to do all the "online" stuff that I originally bought the Treo 180 for. I'll carry the 90 with me around work all week to do my organizer stuff. And for those rare occasions when I'm sitting in an airport and want to make changes to my fantasy football team or check the status of my connecting flight on the Internet in color, I can still use the Treo and Blazer by connecting to iStream via the 8390 and IrDA. Plus, I now have the added bonus of being able to use the 8390 as a wireless modem for my laptop, since my laptop has an IrDA port. All of this, and I no longer have to wrestle with a slightly too-large mobile phone on the weekends. And, to boot, I now have a color organizer that is very light and has a keyboard.

    Convergence is a great thing. Handspring did the right thing in pursueing it. The Treo is an amazing product, especially for someone who uses their electronic organizer 24/7. But that's not me. For me, a highly "connected" phone (voice/data/GPRS capability) in a very small form factor, like the 8390, is more important than a smallish organizer that also has communication capability. Or is it a largish phone that has a very capable organizer built in? Anywhoo, as you can see, I have come to a very expensive conclusion: For me, two is better than one. I have a small organizer to use at work, and a small phone/email device/micro-internet browser to communicate with everywhere else. And I have the capability to "converge" the two through the use of that amazing creation of God's called light, when I am so inclined.

    I'm not trying to rain on anyone's parade here, just sharing with everyone my new perspective. Feel free to question me, make comments, or even take pot-shots at me. I'm interested in everyone else's perspective on this.



    "For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them." Matthew 18-20 (NIV)
  2. #2  
    Very interesting, I think everyones needs and interests are different. My needs are quite different. I need to carry a phone at all times for emergency purposes and I also would never be without my data, schedules, contacts, specs etc. So for the the integration is a must. I don't care about mp3's and all of that. I have learned in personal information management that you keep your life schedule in one place. The ability for me to dial directly from your address book is great and to manage only one database. I also use SMS a lot for personal communications, I would not like doing that thru a small phone or to hastle with an irDa connection to do that. The treo is very pocketable and is the perfect produt for me.
  3.    #3  
    I also use SMS a lot for personal communications, I would not like doing that thru a small phone or to hastle with an irDa connection to do that.
    I've gotten more into SMS recently, too. I don't think I'll ever go through the hassle of making an IR connection to do SMS. Way to inconvenient. However, when I had the old Nokia 8290, I had gotten really good at tapping out quick messages to people on the phone key pad. That T9 predictive text input is an amazing piece of software. But, I can also understand why written (typed?) communication or web-browsing on such a small platform as a phone would not appeal to many. I'm probably one of the few to whom the smaller form factor of the phone is more important than the larger screen and keypad of the Treo. Having to view text and WAP pages on a small screen was a tradeoff I was willing to make for the form factor of the phone.

  4. #4  
    The Treo 90 is an excellent device. If I wasn't spoilt by the convergence that the Treo Communicator models offer, I would ahve definitelety gotten one. It is thin, sleek and very easy to use. The keyboard on it has a nice feel and it is very light and compact (unlike my trusty old Visor Prism). It would/will be a lot more useful if/when Handspring releases a SDIO upgerade for it. That way you can connect it to a Bluetooth enabled phone with ease and can do some of the telephony stuff that we are familiar with on the communicator models.
  5. #5  
    I can relate to your story. I had the same dilemma.. and decided to go for the Clie NR70V and maybe get a bluetooth phone later on...

    I really don't use a cellphone that much, however I do like to listen to music in the bus home...
    So for me it was a functionality choice... a real hard one because the Treo's are very sweet.. if only I had the $$ to buy both...

    But for a lot of people the combination of a phone and PDA is the they have been waiting for... the Treo's are great machines, but it is up to everybody themselves to decide if they need that functionality..

    Also the fact you can browse wireless anywhere where there is a GSM network sounded real good to me, untill I started realizing how slow it would be and how much it would cost me...
    If only there was some good remote computer admin software available for the treo 270 (like a palm version of PCDUO or terminal server) that way I could justify it to my boss: look with this tool I can fix the servers anyplace anytime....
    <IMG WIDTH="200" HEIGHT="50" SRC=> (ex)VisorCentral Discussion Moderator
    Do files get embarrassed when they get unzipped?
  6. #6  
    ToolKit, check out PalmVNC:

    You can run VNC server on your PC and then connect wireless via Palm.

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