Newsweek on Palm's New Reach
Ever since Palm's historical announcement in Las Vegas last week, the web has been abuzz with a flurry of Palm-related news articles, commentaries, and predictions. While PIC will be taking a closer look later in the week at some of the most prescient articles making the rounds online, a piece by Newsweek entitled "Palm's New Reach" deserves to be singled out for discussion.
Written by Dan Lyons, most notable for his former alias as "Fake Steve Jobs", the Newsweek piece is surprisingly thoughtful and contains a good bit of additional background information not seen in any of the articles posted on other sites since Palm's Pre and WebOS announcement last Thursday.
Lyons' piece contains a number of tantalizing items that are certain to make for interesting reading for Palm Pre fans and skeptics alike. Also, Lyons makes no bones about having been afforded ample time to contemplate the Pre's odds of success in the marketplace, as the piece specifically references receiving a sneak peak at the Pre at Palm's Sunnyvale HQ in December.
Some of the small but news-worthy items about the new Pre in the article include:
- It states the Pre's camera is "better" than the iPhone's, though no sample images are provided and it's unsure if the article is basing these claims merely on pixel count or on an analysis of actual subjective image quality.
- Web browsing is stated as "faster" though again this could be attributable to the capabilities of Sprint's EVDO Rev. A network, its higher-clocked TI CPU, or to the Pre's Webkit-based browser (which shares its fundamental rendering architecture with the iPhone's Safari browser).
- The Nova codename, as first reported by PalmInfocenter, for the webOS is apparently confirmed.
- The second page of the piece mentions "…a strong of as yet unannounced mobile devices". This frustratingly vague line could refer to complimentary handsets such as the WebOS-powered Centro 2 we received a tip about last week, or, less likely, it could be a drastically different beast, such as a more capable successor to the Foleo subnotebook announced and subsequently euthanized in mid-2007 by Palm.
- A "thin leather carrying case" is referenced on page 2, though it is unclear if this is a bundled accessory or part of the handful of Pre accessories announced by Palm alongside the Touchstone cradle. Based on our observations from last week of the Pre's preliminary packaging, a carrying case does not appear to be part of the standard accessory bundle.
Time and time again throughout the article, sly jabs are taken at Apple while John Rubinstein's engineering savvy and visionary status is reiterated. Lyons offers the statement from Rubinstein that the downsized Mac OS X code found within the iPhone is too bloated for efficient operation given that hardware's lesser hardware capabilities compared to the Pre's cutting-edge TI chipset (covered here and here).
Lyons describes the Pre's hardware design as "wonderful…smooth and sleek, with rounded edges and a 3.1-inch (diagonal) multi-touch screen that lets you pinch and slide objects the way you do on an iPhone." Unfortunately, no additional information is given on how Palm has been able to avoid any litigation or IP violations with Apple in regards to the Multitouch gestures shared between both platforms.
And, of course, no proper Palm editorial discussing Rubinstein's influence would be complete without the standard topic of whether or not the Pre is an iPhone killer (Elevation Partners' Roger McNamee states it is not) as well as the inevitable comparisons to the early days of the fledgling Mac platform as it pioneered a revolutionary new GUI for desktop PCs but was swiftly eclipsed by the lower-cost, mass-market Wintel platform.
Only time will tell if Palm's Pre can withstand the tremendous developer and public mindshare strength enjoyed by Apple, but given the strong initial buzz and several accolades awarded to Palm in less than one week since the Pre's unveiling, the Palm faithful now have a reason to remain optimistic that the company's first breakthrough product in arguably a decade has finally arrived.
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- I got one -Tuckermaclain
- I got one -Tuckermaclain
- RE: Don't we have this already? -Tuckermaclain
- RE: Palm brand will return in 2018, with devices built by TCL -richf
- RE: Palm brand will return in 2018, with devices built by TCL -dmitrygr
- Palm phone on HDblog -palmato
- Palm PVG100 -hgoldner
- RE: Like Deja Vu -PacManFoo