Test Shows Tungsten T & C Outperform iPaq

Palm recently commission and independent testing lab to compare the Palm Tungsten T and C against, the HP iPAQ h1910 and h5450. The test compared battery life, wireless speed, storage efficiency and document handling. The results showed Palm Tungsten handhelds equaled or outperformed HP Pocket PC devices in all tests.

Palm commissioned VeriTest, formerly known as ZD Labs and eTesting Labs, the testing division of Lionbridge Technologies, Inc., to compare battery life, time to data loss after handheld power failure, wireless download speed, storage efficiency, and document handling for the Palm Tungsten T handheld, the Palm Tungsten C handheld, the HP iPAQ h1910 and the HP iPAQ h5450.

The results of the test are as follows:

  • Battery Life
    The Palm handhelds equaled or outperformed the HP iPAQ devices in all battery-life tests. The Tungsten C handheld posted the highest battery-life scores, including slightly more than eight hours of run-time at full screen brightness. The Tungsten C handheld lasted one hour and 35 minutes longer than the HP iPAQ h5450 in 802.11b wireless battery-life tests.

  • Time to Data Loss After Handheld Power Failure
    The Palm handhelds maintained user data for significantly longer than the iPAQ devices after a power failure in stand-by mode, which causes the units to shut themselves off and remain in their powered-off states. The Tungsten T handheld lasted for 21 days, five times longer than the HP iPAQ h5450, which lasted only four days, in a time to data loss test.

  • Wireless Download Speed
    The Tungsten C handheld was more than twice as fast as the HP iPAQ h5450 in a web page download test, loading the test page in 11.69 seconds as compared to 28.02 seconds for the iPAQ.

  • Storage Efficiency
    Storing a set of contacts, appointments and documents revealed little difference in overall storage efficiency of the handhelds. However, the document sizes on the Palm handhelds were significantly smaller than the equivalent documents on the HP iPAQ devices, with no difference in document formatting or content loss.

  • Document Handling
    In previous document-handling tests, Palm handhelds with DataViz Documents To Go performed far better than the built-in software in Pocket PC devices for handling Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint documents. For example, Documents To Go, which is included with the Palm Tungsten handhelds, allows Palm handheld users to synchronize and edit Word, Excel and PowerPoint files with confidence, knowing that synchronization back to the desktop will retain the integrity of the original document. Fonts and formats generally are preserved. (Use of Microsoft's PocketWord and PocketExcel for the Pocket PC platform can result in lost fonts, degradation of image resolution and lost headers, tables, and charts.)

The full 10 page report can be found here in pdf format.

Source: Palm Inc Press release

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Sholey @ 5/20/2003 10:49:58 AM #
I wonder if other handheld sites will run this story! They always seem to tout the PPC as better performance
RE: Media
djh @ 5/20/2003 10:33:36 PM #
This is all very interesting but nothing tht would make me have the slightest interest in buying another Palm.

The only Palm OS device that I like is the Sony NX. Be interesting to see the new model when it arrives.

The Palm form factors (apart from the TT which seems to be on the way out) are basic horrible.

I really wish we could get a clamshell PPC sort of like an NX60, PPC2003, CF slot, SDIO slot, embedded BT and 802.11b and 128MB RAM.

Now that would be great!!!!


RE: Media
asiayeah @ 5/21/2003 4:18:54 AM #
I've bet you won't get a PPC like the Sony NX form factors. All PPC just look and feel the same.


With great power comes great responsiblity.

RE: Media
RAMdŽd @ 5/21/2003 2:20:15 PM #
This is all very interesting but nothing tht would make me have the slightest interest in buying another Palm.

That's exactly the way I feel. About PPCs. After owning both a Palm and an iPAQ, I fail to see what all the fuss is about.

Even with the faster processors, docs to go opens faster than Pocket Word and Excel. Not to mention the loss of formatting.

I was impressed by the larger color screens, but that's not nearly enough to make me ever get another one for real, day to day work.

Larger and heavier, the general bulk of PPCs will keep me in the Palm camp for some time.

An armed society is a polite society.

RE: Media
Khris @ 5/22/2003 2:28:29 PM #
I've owned an iPaq as well as a number of different Palm devices. I currently have a TT and have no doubt that it out performs any PPC device out there.

The main reason for buying the TT over the other Tungsten devices is the form factor. I personally am not a fan of the thumb keyboards, and by not having my Grafitti/Jot area it just doesn't feel like a real Palm.

RE: Media
TTrules @ 5/23/2003 6:15:53 PM #
I agree, I love the formfactor on my TT

Tungsten T with Tungsten C Hardware = Great!

T.W.G @ 5/20/2003 10:52:21 AM #

I can't imagine, I'm the 1st here :-)

Ok, after reviewing the "C" here in Germany I can say that I would love an Tungsten T style device without(!) Keyboard but WITH BLuetooth instead or together with Wi-Fi plus this ultracool Batterylife!

Greetings from Germany


RE: Tungsten T with Tungsten C Hardware = Great!
Beavis @ 5/20/2003 3:21:59 PM #
..."I can't imagine, I'm the 1st here :-)"

You're not. Check again.

RE: Tungsten T with Tungsten C Hardware = Great!
rened @ 5/20/2003 3:57:09 PM #
Can't wait to read your review!
RE: Tungsten T with Tungsten C Hardware = Great!
Mr T @ 5/20/2003 5:09:24 PM #
Speaking of the review, when is PIC going to post their review? It's been over a month since the Tungsten C came out.......

RE: Tungsten T with Tungsten C Hardware = Great!
T.W.G @ 5/21/2003 12:23:00 PM #
Hey Guys,

the german review is online at

@beavis: Ok, I saw it after posting. So be cool :)


Well, aint that somethin'....

xtremist5150 @ 5/20/2003 10:53:38 AM #
Shows how far Palm devices have come. Can you imagine running this test a year ago with an m505 instead? (shudder)

"All I wanna do is a zoom zoom zoom and a boom boom." --Wrecks 'N Effects
RE: Well, aint that somethin'....
hkklife @ 5/20/2003 11:59:01 AM #
Well, year ago it'd actually have been an m515 but *shudder* nonetheless! ;-)

Remember back in the good old days when we considered the Palm V to Vx a quantum leap? 4 extra mhz of CPU speed, 8mb ram, and OS 3.5--those were the days!

RE: Well, aint that somethin'....
i @ 5/20/2003 1:23:28 PM #
Forget that, remember StreakHack? The amazing performance that gave all Palm III and V owners?
RE: Well, aint that somethin'....
MSTCrowT @ 5/21/2003 2:18:02 PM #
I still use a Palm Vx on a daily basis. While 8MB of storage isn't great, using QuickBits speeds it up some, and Afterburner oc's the CPU to 28MHz along with some other enhancements.

Again I'm not surprised...

i2oadi2unnei2 @ 5/20/2003 11:08:25 AM #
Whenever I hear/see an OS running under "WINDOWSxx", they hog too many resources i.e. memory, rah rah rah, etc. that's one factor why I stayed away from those ipaqs... *GRIN*

...|3eep |3eep!!...

Same here.
RAMdŽd @ 5/21/2003 2:14:19 PM #
that's one factor why I stayed away from those ipaqs...

I received an iPAQ as a gift, and it seemed a huge leap from a Palm V.

But one thing I noticed- just like real Windows, it always has app resources running after you close the window.

I turn the iPAQ on a couple of days of "rest" only to find a low battery warning and several apps running in the background.

The big screen is nice, but I really do prefer the Palm hardware and OS.

An armed society is a polite society.


a3 @ 5/20/2003 12:26:15 PM #
I'm forwarding this article to all of my PPC owner friends...

Nothing: the worst you can do.

Already a Tapwave's Helix fan...

On the other hand...

bookrats @ 5/20/2003 12:30:10 PM #
...I wonder in what areas the PPC did better than the Tungsten?

I'm assuming that Palm would probably not publicize sections of the report that should areas where the PPC performed better than the Palm.

That's perfectly OK -- they paid for the report, they should be able to decide what results get published (as long as they don't alter the data or obscure the results). Or they may have gone into it knowing what areas they were superior in, and concentrating on just the subjects that Palm was superior for tests.

Certainly interesting results. I'm on my 3rd Palm OS PDA, and have no plans to switch; but I'm always curious to see how things stack up between the two.


"I'm warning you ... if you kill me, they'll just send 008!"

Jeff Meyer

RE: On the other hand...
dhibbitts @ 5/20/2003 1:36:28 PM #
The iPAQ 54xx does cost $150.00USD more ($649.00 on HP's website vs. $499 on Palm's website) than the Tungsten/C, so I guess PPC wins there if more is better.

Daniel Hibbitts
Ann Arbor Palm OS Developers Group
Ann Arbor Palm OS Users Group

RE: On the other hand...
Islander @ 5/20/2003 4:24:08 PM #
Jeff I doubt they are not publishing everything. Its far more likely that they requested testing only in areas they knew they would win. I have no doubt the very same tests were ALREADY run by Palm in developing the TungC and a large goal was to be better in these specific ways. Thus they knew it was suprerior in these areas before these tests or they would have never commissioned it. These test were designed to have an indepentant lab tell the world what Palm already knew.

If there are areas in which the Ipaq is better (seems a pretty broad range of testing though) Palm knows it and will not ASK an independant entity to compare the two in such an area.

RE: On the other hand...
Mike Scott @ 5/20/2003 5:37:39 PM #
It would have been interesting to see them run some CPU intensive test, like total time to run the same large complex spreadsheet (or something).

RE: On the other hand...
blueBlade @ 5/20/2003 10:20:16 PM #
It would be even more interesting to do continuous video stream using WiFi.

RE: On the other hand...
jtopf @ 5/21/2003 9:21:24 AM #
I disagree with the premise that since they paid for the results they get censor any information that does not agree with the marketing aim of the company. The whole idea and credibility behind independent tests is based on the fact that after commissioning the study the sponsor has no influence on the final report.

I agree that Palm probably had an excellent idea of how the results would turn out and that is why they designed the study in the manner that they did.

The medical literature is filled with company sponsored trials and it is often easy to spot how the company set up the study to benefit their product.

Joel Topf, MD

RE: On the other hand...
RAMdŽd @ 5/21/2003 2:27:56 PM #
That's perfectly OK -- they paid for the report, they should be able to decide what results get published (as long as they don't alter the data or obscure the results).

I agree. It's not what I want, but very few companies have done and will do otherwise. This is nothing new. This is basically advertising. There is no Surgeon General's warning required, so I expect none.

It takes independant testing for independant reasons to get more objectivity.

I have no plans of ever getting another PPC device until they improve their form factor, but I always like knowing what the pros and cons of any format/platform are.

We all have preferences and that's not a problem, as long as we know the difference between those and facts.

It helps reduce the juvenile "My PDA can beat up your PDA!" squabbles.

An armed society is a polite society.

We're getting close. . .

sub_tex @ 5/20/2003 1:21:15 PM #
I've messed with the T|C and it's incredibly fast. You don't realize how fast it is until you jump back to practically any other PDA out there.

Granted, I was running the default palm apps which are tiny as hell and ran fast on 16Mhz, but still. The web speeds were nice as well.

But until we get some native file handling IN THE DEVICE as well as on the memory cards, the PPCs will still hold that over Palm devices' heads.

Give me no conversion for file types AND that speed and I'll wet myself.

RE: We're getting close. . .
sandbuck @ 5/20/2003 2:06:02 PM #
Both Documets to Go and Quickoffice now handle native Office filetypes.

RE: We're getting close. . .
IanJD @ 5/20/2003 2:17:08 PM #
>Both Documets to Go and Quickoffice now handle native Office filetypes.

DtG doesn't, yet.

RE: We're getting close. . .
Cutting Crew 2 @ 5/21/2003 2:01:15 PM #
Since March, Quickoffice Premier v7.0 has enabled Palm OS devices from OS3.5 forward to be able to access native Microsoft Word and Excel files from expansion storage cards, to receive these files via beaming or bluetooth transfer from laptops or PPCs, and to utilize forward-designed e-mail clients like SnapperMail for opening Native file e-mail attachments.

It is true that no similar solution exists on the market today for Palm OS handhelds.

Mike Compeau

RE: We're getting close. . .
mikecane @ 5/21/2003 3:53:40 PM #
Could someone beam over a Pocket Word or Pocket Excel file from a PPC to a PalmOS (5+) device and have your software deal with it just fine?

RE: We're getting close. . .
roseBlade @ 5/21/2003 5:33:34 PM #
the pocket word/excel has to be saved as "word" file in the save as button inside the ppc tho. Otherwise yes, they should work. I have no problem transfering pword/excell directly to friends laptop.

(warning: excrutiatingly slow for big file)


Foo Fighter @ 5/20/2003 1:37:54 PM #
Hmm...a Palm commissioned study shows Palm devices leading Pocket PC? I am STUNNED. What's next? Apple benchmarks showing Macs outperforming PCs? 8^|

Sorry for the sarcasm, but I really wish software/hardware developers would spend more time improving their products rather than talking smack about their competitors. I'm not impressed.

RE: Benchmarketing
dhibbitts @ 5/20/2003 1:45:11 PM #
These stuides are necessary as that is what each side (Palm and Microsoft) are bringing forward as arguments as to why their platform is superior.

Here's the link to the results:


It is a good read.

Daniel Hibbitts
Ann Arbor Palm OS Developers Group
Ann Arbor Palm OS Users Group

RE: Benchmarketing
Foo Fighter @ 5/20/2003 1:58:52 PM #
Interesting read, but some aspects of these tests are misleading. Look at MP3 playback. Audio volume on the Tungten|T is anemic even at max. Yet the tests show it at 50%? Who is going to listen to MP3 music on a T|T at 50%? It's too weak at 100%.

Video? Sorry, but video on a Palm device is still a novelty at this point. I can't stand looking at choppy pixelated movie clips in Kinoma. How does that compare to PPC? Do the tests reflect quality?

These raw numbers don't tell the whole story.

RE: Benchmarketing
drac @ 5/20/2003 2:17:01 PM #
Choppy Kinoma?

Is that on a PalmOS 5 device?

The Kinoma stuff I've seen (which is not much, I'm not really interested in PDA video) has been silky-smooth.

According to the full report,
"Video playback was inconsistent across the devices, with the HP 1910 displaying poor refresh rates resulting in jerky, slide-show-like video instead of the smooth playback seen on the Palm devices and the iPAQ 5450."



d r. a. c h a r l e s

RE: Benchmarketing
kezza @ 5/20/2003 2:17:26 PM #
Foo Fighter @ 5/20/2003 1:37:54 PM:
> Hmm...a Palm commissioned study shows Palm devices
> leading Pocket PC? I am STUNNED. What's next? Apple
> benchmarks showing Macs outperforming PCs? 8^|

actually, apple's been doing that for at least the last 3 years, probably longer. since the introduction of the G3 powerpc chip with RISC processing, apple computers routinely outperform PCs at the same Mhz, and even when the apple Mhz is lower, particularly in the graphics arena. In fact, it was a major selling point on the the apple website for years.
i couldn't find the studies themselves from a few years ago on the apple website, but here's what they're touting now:
"The PowerPC G4 processor has been designed for unparalleled efficiency and performance. It can accomplish more tasks than Pentium processors in the same amount of time because of its short pipeline and the vector processing strengths of the Velocity Engine."
from http://www.apple.com/powermac/architecture.html

"Well, if it isn't the leader of the wiener patrol, boning up on his nerd lessons"

RE: Benchmarketing
drac @ 5/20/2003 2:21:24 PM #
Oh, and although I'll agree that the TT's audio would be improved by more volume, I should note that I listen to it at 50% sometimes. ;)

Chalk it up to preference.

PalmOS may be making inroads into multimedia functionality, but they are still not flawless multimedia machines- which is fine by me.



d r. a. c h a r l e s

RE: Benchmarketing
Foo Fighter @ 5/20/2003 2:22:32 PM #
Yes, that is what I experience on my Zire 71. Every video I've downloaded or converted via Kinoma producer looks pixelated and VERY low quality. Refresh rate is fine, but the overall quality sucks. PPC is still way ahead of PalmOS in video playback. We need a TRUE video player, like RealOne, QuickTime, or Windows Media (yeah...like that's going to happen anytime soon). Kinoma is crude and primitive.

RE: Benchmarketing
iJITSU @ 5/20/2003 2:37:48 PM #
Sony's movie player renders excellent video, MUCH better than Kinoma. Too bad it only works on Sony Clies.

RE: Benchmarketing
Foo Fighter @ 5/20/2003 2:46:10 PM #
> Sony's movie player renders excellent video, MUCH better than Kinoma. Too bad it only works on Sony Clies.

Yes, it is the best PalmOS solution I've seen. Enough to match PPC. Unfortunately, it is proprietary. :-(

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