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  1.    #21  
    Originally posted by dhodory:
    ...all other things being equal, a Palm O/S machine will run faster than a M/S Pocket PC machine. .
    Sorry, but this is no longer true. In fact, you have it backwards. The Compaq iPaq is far faster than any Palm. It shoots through menus, and opens applications like a screaming bullet!

    The Palm OS actually paints screens, and renders text a little slowly when held against the iPaq.
  2. #22  

    That's what you said about the Jornada until the critics' reviews came out, claiming the contrary.

    I've been trying to get an iPaq for two months now with no luck. It's a longshot, but does anyone know a place to get one of these at retail?
  3.    #23  
    Originally posted by Gameboy70:

    That's what you said about the Jornada until the critics' reviews came out, claiming the contrary.
    Well, I have an excuse for that blunder. Originally, a friend of mine, who worked for Agilent, showed me a pre-production Jornada. That unit performed as fast as the iPaq I now own. But what I didn't know at the time, is that this was a "modified" unit. I don't know what modifications were made to this device, but all I can say is it was damn fast! After buying the Jornada in April, I was very disappointed with its rather sluggish performance.

    This time I'm right. The iPaq is indeed noticeably faster than Palm based devices. Especially those running OS 3.5.


    "No matter where you go...there you are!"
  4.    #24  
    By the way, CNET is running an interview with technology columnist David Coursey, who seems to like the Pocket PC (especially the iPaq) a great deal.

    Click here for the video:

    [This message has been edited by foo fighter (edited 08-12-2000).]
  5. #25  

    I finally found an iPaq at Staples. I'll have to pick it up next week when I go through all the red tape in Purchasing. But I will say this much: the iPaq is clearly the fastest Pocket PC to date. I was genuinely impressed by its speed. Was it faster the Palm OS? No way -- except maybe 3.5. But the speed difference is negligible. It's certainly fast enough for speed to no longer be an issue with the PPC. And the iPaq is the only PPC I've ever thought had a decent form factor. It's even light! And unlike Palm units, the alarm is loud enough to be usable. I can't wait to try the voice recording.

    I'll have to play with the handwriting recognition some more, but my initial impression (based on only a few minutes) is that it sucks. But that's my only gripe. It's a nice unit, and it might even save the PPC from oblivion. For anyone in the market for a color PDA, this is the one to get.

    [This message has been edited by Gameboy70 (edited 08-13-2000).]
  6.    #26  
    Originally posted by Gameboy70:

    I'll have to play with the handwriting recognition some more, but my initial impression (based on only a few minutes) is that it sucks.

    Gameboy, I'll repeat myself for the 18th million time: If you don't like the HR, then use Graffiti!!! Pocket PCs will understand Graffiti once you enable "Uppercase mode". To activate this feature just go to the INPUT icon in the settings screen, and select "Character Recognizer" from the drop-down menu.

    As for speed, iPaq is definitely faster than OS 3.5, which is noticeably slower than the Visor's OS 3.1H.

    BTW, thanks for the reply to my Mac vs. PC question. I've mainly been interested in the Mac for the impending release of OS X.
  7.    #27  
    Also, I'll be posting an article on my site that will detail the process of converting MP3 files into the more efficient WMA (Windows Media format) audio.

    If your interested in converting Palm ebooks (doc files) into Microsoft Reader format ebooks, check out my article:


    "No matter where you go...there you are!"
  8. #28  
    Gameboy, I'll repeat myself for the 18th million time: If you don't like the HR, then use Graffiti!!!
    To your subtle use of the repetition, bolding and multiple exclamation marks, I'll repeat myself for the first time. I said (1) I played with the unit for only a few minutes (not a thorough evaluation), (2) I planned to play with it more when I can actually buy it, and (3) the handwriting recognition sucks, not Graffiti. Whether or not I "like" HR is irrelevant; it either does the job or it doesn't. Besides, I didn't have time to try the Graffiti option.

    But you're probably right about the iPaq being faster than Palm OS 3.5. I can only go my memory, since it's been a couple of months since I've had my hands on a Palm IIIc. I do remember it being slow, and wouldn't at all be surprise if it was slower than the iPaq. But the iPaq certainly isn't faster than the Visor, whatever its other strengths, unless you make allowances for the amount of rendering the iPaq has to do.
  9.    #29  
    Sorry Gameboy, I really wasn't spouting off at you in particular. I'm just sick of having to re-explain this point to everyone who keeps pounding on the Handwriting issue. If you like Graffiti, then just use that, I do. Personally, I agree. Since I've used Palm devices for 2 years, I found Pocket PCs HR rather bewildering. I immediately switched to Graffiti, and I have been happy ever since.

    I've been counseling Dan Gillmor from Mercury News on this issue. He was in the midst of giving the Jornada (and Pocket PCs in general) a rather frowning review. But after giving him some tips on Handwriting, syncing, and of course Media Player, it completely changed his perception of these devices. But the real shocker is, even John C. Dvorak now likes these devices too, and he is the biggest Palm zealot of all time!

    Again, sorry for coming off steamy. No offence intended, I assure you.


    "No matter where you go...there you are!"

    [This message has been edited by foo fighter (edited 08-13-2000).]
  10.    #30  
    By the way, I can't help but ask this intrusive question: What on earth happened to lure you to the dark side (iPaq)?

    One minute your practically stomping on these devices, now your buying one!

    Sorry, I don't mean to pry. But it's like watching an atheist join a church.


    "No matter where you go...there you are!"
  11. #31  
    A number of reasons. First, I'm not paying for it. Second, I only need one PDA, so if I had to choose a single one to buy on my own budget, I'd still get the Visor. Third, I presume that people interested in the iPaq are already WinCE/PPC afficianados, so when writing a review for them, I need to keep that in mind. Fourth, Compaq did a much better job with the PPC that I thought would be possible. As I said above, the iPaq is the first PPC I've come across with a decent form factor. The HP and Casio units were just as bad as I expected. Compaq's wasn't.

    My compliments are aimed more at Compaq than MS. I still think the heirarchical menu and file navigation in the OS is lame. The memory management model still sucks. I haven't had a chance to test the battery life yet, but if I have to charge it every night, that's not so great. But overall, I think there's more right with the iPaq than there is wrong -- a first for any CE device.

    I'll probably still use the Visor as my main device though. I use the Stowaway all the time, and when the Minstrel S wireless module comes out, I'll be able to research, write and publish from anywhere without need a phone line or a power socket. That's more important to me than color, MP3, etc. The two main features PPCs have that I like are voice recording and Pocket Word. Compaq has raised the bar for PPCs by putting these features in some great hardware.
  12. #32  
    Better late than never . . . seriously, though FF, re-read my statement. "All other things being equal, I Palm O/S device will be faster than a PPC" (or something to that effect). How much ROM/RAM does a PPC have. Well specifically, for a iPAQ it's 16 MB of ROM and 32 MB of RAM. How fast of a processor does the iPAQ run? 200-something MHZ. My point is, even if (in the current state) a PPC is faster (and there seems to be some debate about that -- as Handspring devices have a streamlined version of the Palm O/S, not v3.5), how fast do you think a Palm O/S would run with 16 MB of ROM, 32 MB of RAM, and a 200 MHZ processor? Just SLIGHTLY faster than it does currently with 2 MB of ROM, 8 MB of RAM, and a 20(16?) MHZ processor? I think so. What about you. The whole point of this discussion STARTED as who had culpability/responsibility for PPC not being successful. In the end, based on the fact that M/S writes really bloated (and crash-prone, but that's another arguement entirely) code, they ARE responsible. M/S's bloated O/S has made lots of ROM, RAM and MHZ neccessary for a PPC to run equally as fast (or faster if you're talking about Palm v3.5) as a Palm O/S device. Plain and simple, M/S's bloated O/S is a competitive DISADVANTAGE. Ask yourself this, what do you think the margin is on a product like a Palm O/S based device with a 20(16?) MHZ processor, 2 MB of ROM, and 8 MB of RAM selling at $249. What do you think the margin is for a PPC O/S device with 16 MB of ROM, 32 MB of RAM, and a 200 MHZ processor selling at $499?

    I will grant, however, that there is a speed/usefulness limit on PDAs. That is, since most people are not typically running databases or other processor/RAM/ROM intensive applications on the PDA, there is a limit to how far Palm COULD push the speed disparity. Eventually, much as is the case with desktops today -- the difference between the functionality of a 600 MHZ Pentium desktop machine and a 900 MHZ Pentium desktop machine is unimportant for 75% of the user community -- Palm would run out of room. The real questions here are: where is that limit? What does the economic/business model look like at the respective price points. If hardware prices fall past a certain point, the competitive disadvantage M/S has saddled the PPC makers with won't matter. I'm sure someone out there has done this type of analysis, but it's beyond my arena of information.
  13. #33  
    For the record:

    1999 cost for " . . . the DragonBall EZ has a suggested resale price of $8.95 per piece in quantities of 10,000 . . ." [ ] - - This is the basis for my suggesting that this chip can not go that much lower. Why? Unless demand mushrooms (as exponential), Motorola can't make enough off these processors to justify production at a cost too far below $5 per chip (I don't remember ever seeing a CPU going for much less than $5 per chip, but I normally don't pay much attention to this end of the market - if someone has better info please share!). It is worth pointing out that the MC68328 (the predecessor to the MC68EZ328) is already in the process of going out of production. OTOH, there is a successor to the MC68EZ328, the MC68VZ328, which ups the CPU to 33MHz. [,00.html ] Cost? Price is $11 per chip in lots of 10,000 [ ].

    Meanwhile, the best info that I can find is per chip pricing for the FADES1100DF (that is the 160MHZ 2.0V StrongARM) - $53.18 [source: ] For comparison (at least as best as I have time for), the price for the MC68EZ328PU16V (used in the Visor I think) is $13.75 per chip (min. order of 90). [same source as SA-1100]. This is why I suggested that the cost of the PPCs can drop alot further than can the current generation of Palms.

    I'll leave an examination of LCD and memory costs to someone else. As someone else pointed out, for those components that the Palm and PPC families share in common, there is no price advantage - other than PPCs needing to use alot more memory and somewhat(?) more expensive LCDs; and Moore's law applies to both sides equally.

    My point is that, where there are hardware differences, the current Palm family of products' key components are on the tail end of the cost curve, where cost falls little with time. Meanwhile, these same components in the PPC are still near the middle of the curve, where costs still fall significantly with time.

    However, I must concede that the PPC's CPU is less expensive than I imagined; and it may not be able to close the gap to the sub-$300 price range until LCD and memory prices begin to fall significantly.

    [This message has been edited by yucca (edited 08-18-2000).]
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