Palm announces webOS and Pre phone

Palm is hoping to get back on track with its new Pre touch phone, which comes equipped with equally new operating system webOS, both announced on Thursday.

Palm is hoping to get back on track with its new Pre touch phone, which comes equipped with the equally new operating system webOS, both announced on Thursday at the Consumer Electronics Show.

The Pre and the operating system use a couple of key concepts to make the phone easy to use, and to tightly integrate it with Internet services for e-mail, instant messaging and search, as well as with Facebook.

For example, the phone organizes multiple active applications using "activity cards," large icons that line up on the display. Using the touch interface, users can flip through them, move them around, or throw them off screen by dragging a finger from the bottom to the top of the screen.

Bringing together multiple data sources into one view is also an important part of the Pre and webOS user experience. Users can, for example, group together Outlook, Google and Facebook calendars or collect e-mail from multiple accounts in one inbox. All conversations with the same person over instant messaging or text messaging are grouped together in one chat-style view.

Things like new text messages and calendar appointments appear as pop-up notifications at the bottom of the screen.

The phone doesn't just use touch; it also comes with a QWERTY keyboard that slides out from the bottom of the phone. When the keyboard slides out, the phone becomes slightly curved. Just using a "cheesy virtual keyboard" doesn't cut it, said Jon Rubinstein, executive chairman at Palm, in a direct dig at his former employer Apple, with its famed iPhone onscreen keyboard.

Like most other companies that announce smartphones these days, Palm couldn't resist taking a couple jabs at market leader Apple. The executives also highlighted the fact that the Pre battery can be removed, unlike the iPhone battery.

Users can start typing on the keyboard to begin searching for contacts or applications -- a feature Palm calls Universal Search. If it doesn't find anything on the phone it gives the user the option of choosing from a list of sites to search, including Google and Wikipedia.

The phone will start shipping during the first half of 2009, Palm CEO Ed Colligan said.

Sprint will get exclusive access to the phone in the U.S., and its CEO, Dan Hesse, was on stage during the announcement hyping its capabilities. Hesse likes the fact that he can speak on the phone and at the same time check the calendar and send an e-mail.

Pricing for the Pre hasn't been announced.

On the hardware side, the phone has support for EV-DO Rev A, 802.11 b and g, GPS (Global Positioning System), Bluetooth with stereo support, a 3-megapixel camera with LED flash and 8GB of built-in storage, but no memory card slot

The phone has a 3.1-inch screen with a 320x480 resolution.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags CESPalm Pre

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Bitdefender 2019

Taking cybersecurity to the highest level and order now for a special discount on the world’s most awarded and trusted cybersecurity. Be aware without a care!

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Luke Hill

MSI GT75 TITAN

I need power and lots of it. As a Front End Web developer anything less just won’t cut it which is why the MSI GT75 is an outstanding laptop for me. It’s a sleek and futuristic looking, high quality, beast that has a touch of sci-fi flare about it.

Emily Tyson

MSI GE63 Raider

If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.

Laura Johnston

MSI GS65 Stealth Thin

If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.

Andrew Teoh

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?