Palm Pre 2 webOS smartphone
Palm Pre 2 review: The Palm Pre 2 has outdated hardware compared to its rivals, but webOS' handling of multitasking and notifications is excellent
- Superb multitasking and Web browsing
- Excellent notifications and elegant UI
- Full QWERTY keyboard
- Below average build quality
- Small display
- Sluggish performance
The Palm Pre 2 webOS phone handles multitasking and notifications with ease and has an elegant and intuitive interface. However its below average build quality, small display and sluggish performance make it difficult to recommend over iPhone and Android alternatives.
Best Deals (Selling at 1 store)
The Palm Pre 2 smartphone isn't distributed in Australia, but its webOS operating system will soon make its way into the HP Pre 3 and HP Veer smartphones thanks to HP's acquisition of Palm last year. The Palm Pre 2 has dated hardware compared to its rivals, but webOS' handling of multitasking and notifications as well as its elegant interface are very appealing.
The Palm Pre 2 is best described as a slight enhancement of the Palm Pre Plus. It features the same body that looks like a large pebble and slides up to reveal a full QWERTY keyboard. However, the glossy black plastic of the Pre Plus has been dumped for a better feeling rubber-style finish, while the Pre 2 display is flatter, providing a more ergonomic feel. Also gone is the cheap feeling micro-USB port cover. Build quality is improved when compared to its predecessor, but the Palm Pre 2's hardware remains inferior to the likes of the iPhone 4 and the HTC Desire.
The Palm Pre 2 uses 'Gorilla Glass' which Palm claims make it less prone to scratches and marks. The 3.1in display is clear and vibrant, but lags well behind the competition and can't produce the same crisp text or vivid colour. The smaller display also dampens the mobile Web experience, even if webOS generally handles most other tasks well.
The Palm Pre 2 Pre is relatively easy to type on once your fingers get used to the keyboard layout — those with larger fingers will find it a bit cramped, and the raised edges surrounding the keyboard can dig into your fingers while typing. The Palm Pre 2 also gets an upgraded 5-megapixel camera compared to its predecessor's 3Mp snapper, and a 1GHz processor compared to the Pre Plus' 500MHz CPU.
In addition to slightly upgraded hardware, the Palm Pre 2 also has the latest version of webOS. It adds to the already superb multitasking and notifications system by introducing 'stacks', enhancing the card system by allowing multiple cards per application. The latest version of webOS also uses a comprehensive universal search tool called 'just type', a new launcher, enhanced text editing and spelling correction, support for Flash Web browsing and is claimed to offer a faster start-up time.
The Palm Pre 2 retains the Pre Plus' excellent "gesture area" which is much more effective than tapping back on the top left corner of the screen or pressing the home button, as you would on an iPhone. It also handles notifications with ease, and its Web browser is excellent at handling tabs; these are launched as separate cards and can be closed and switched just as you would any application.
The Palm Pre 2 and webOS are not perfect; you can't customise notification tones, text correction remains inferior to competitors, the e-mail app offers limited functionality and general performance (particularly opening applications) is sluggish. Despite these issues, the Palm Pre 2's handling of multitasking and notifications, as well as its elegant interface, are very appealing features.
The Palm Pre 2 is not officially sold in Australia, but a model that will work on Telstra's Next G network can be purchased through online retailer MobiCity.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Review: TCL C1 series 4K TV
- 2 Sony 75-inch UHD TV (X9400C) review: Sony and Android are a winning duo
- 3 LG 55EG960T OLED UHD TV
- 4 Panasonic Viera UHD TV review: good hardware, fragmented software
- 5 Microsoft Lumia 640 review: Honouring Nokia's legacy
Best Deals on Good Gear Guide
Latest News Articles
- This sticker can wirelessly charge your smartphone or tablet
- Google's modular smartphone project sacrificed its original vision to move forward
- Android device updates: HTC 10 is getting stability fixes and preview 3 is headed to Android N
- Google I/O 2016: Every Android app – really – is coming to Chrome
- Zip! Pow! Google debuts Android Instant Apps that load without installation
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- CCProgram Business AnalystVIC
- CCBusiness AnalystNSW
- FTSenior Network Engineer - Technical LeadACT
- CCTIBCO Integration ConsultantVIC
- CCSenior Process AnalystVIC
- FTSenior Business Analysts - Payments or Disaster RecoveryVIC
- CCDeemed Order Business SpecialistVIC
- FTBusiness AnalystVIC
- CCechnical Specialist ApplicationsACT
- CCNetwork Consultant - Bandwidth Assessment | 3 month contract into Defence | NV1+ACT
- CCRelease Manager, InfrastructureNSW
- CCContract Analyst Programmer (JAVA/SQL/Web) 160519/AP/453Asia
- CCSenior iOS DeveloperNSW
- CCSenior Automation & Performance EngineerVIC
- CCDomain Specialist | Multiple RolesVIC
- CCSkilled Sitecore / .NET DeveloperNSW
- CCSecurity Clearances Vetting Services OfficerACT
- CCSenior Network Engineer - NV1ACT
- CCSenior DevOps EngineerACT
- CCOpen Source Specialist / Senior ConsultantQLD
- CCSystem AdmimistratorQLD
- CCSenior Business AnalystVIC
- CCOracle Fusion SOA/BPEL DeveloperVIC
- CCSecurity Consultant - Telecommunications and NetworksSA
- FTProduct Owner - MarketingNSW