Centro Rated as Most Appealing Mobile Handset Design

Palm CentroJust a two short months after the official unveiling of Palmís latest smartphone, the Garnet-powered Palm Centro on the Sprint CDMA network, the diminutive device has received its first official accolade. The Strategy Analysis Wireless Device Lab has bestowed the title of "Most Appealing Innovative Design" to the Centro.

No further word from the Lab on why the Centro specifically bests its larger-but-similar Treo brethren in usability and design, as it still lacks some commonplace features found on nearly all other mobile handsets such as native voice dialing. Perhaps the sparkly ruby red color scheme really does make a world of difference?

The statement from Paul Brown, Senior User Experience Analyst at Strategy Analytics, reads: "The Samsung i760 and Palm Centro top the purchase likelihood table for those seeking a multifunction, fully integrated device." and goes to state that the Centro is an attention-getting handset design, besting even the Samsung i760 for initial consumer appeal. The full text of the original report is available here. Since the test subjects for the study were only given a small selection of new release phones, the results are somewhat misleading and should not be taken to read that the Centro's designs bests the entire mobile device industry.

Nevertheless, this award offers a brief glimmer of positive news for Palm in light of their recently-announced warning of losses in Q2 FY2008 (full earning results to be revealed December 18th) , the continued lack of certification of the Verizon version of the Treo 755p, and the lengthy saga of the Treo 750's much-delayed WM6 OS update.

The Palm Centro first became available on October 14th for Sprintís CDMA network with a price of $99.99 with 2-year contract. The Centro's full retail price is $399.99 with both ruby red and onyx black colors now available. A version for GSM expected at some point in Q1 2008.

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Centro also on Time's top 10 list.

bcombee @ 12/10/2007 1:40:20 PM # Q
Another bit of good news -- Centro is #4 on Time Magazine's top gadgets for 2008. (Yes, the iPhone is #1.) See their notes at http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/top10/article/0,30583,1686204_1686305_1690773,00.html

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Nuff said

SeldomVisitor @ 12/10/2007 2:03:01 PM # Q
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Centro - my take

VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 5:30:01 PM # Q
I thought people were complaining the keyb is too small?
Also, there aren't any unlocked Centros; so thumbs down from me.

Today I bought my first ever OLED device.
Lyra RCA MC4002A (http://tinyurl.com/2kosbo)
No turning back for me. All future purchases have to be oled.

OLED is revolutionary. The video quality is spectacular, the viewing angles 100%, rich colors, true blacks; breathtaking. Totally changes the way you perceive and use mobile video and mobile anything else.

I have been screaming forever for Palm to trump the competition by adopting OLED. The secrets to success are right in front of their face and they are yet totally blind.

Shame. Real real sad.

RE: Centro - my take
PacManFoo @ 12/10/2007 5:57:45 PM # Q
I finally saw one of these the other day. Talk about a postage stamp size screen. Guess I'm missing something here as to why these sell.

PDA's Past and Present:
Palm TX (Number 2)
Palm - IIIxe, Vx, M500, M505, Tungsten T, TX
Handspring - Edge, Platinum, Deluxe
Sony - SJ22
Apple - MP110, MP2000, MP2100
RE: Centro - my take
VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 6:15:38 PM # Q
Because even at 1", it is more fun to watch movies on it than on a Palm device. That's how important a natural visual experience is for mobile computing.

Just a matter of time before Jobs goes that way. Then of course, everyone else will follow. Palm's problem is they are followers, not leaders.

RE: Centro - my take
VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 6:23:48 PM # Q
Actually mine 1.5".

The only thing holding me to Palm now is Palm OS. My Treo 680 allows me to enter PIM entries e.g., notes, events, alarms, very naturally and quickly all day long. And I use the phone more and more.

Short of OLED and a new exciting Palm OS over Linux, I am slowly preparing a transition away from Palm products. Of course, any future Palm device has to be unlocked.

btw, having 2 tiny devices in 2 different pockets really is not an issue. My new multimedia player slips in my front shirt pocket and my Treo 680 is in my pant pocket.
Of course it would be great to have all built into a Palm but lets be realistic... Palm is not smart enough to pull it all together.

Or are they... TX, Centro, 680, LD. You can see they have the know how, they just need to pull all their great innovations together and add OLED!

RE: Centro - my take
nitf @ 12/10/2007 6:28:12 PM # Q
Not sure what country you are in but the standard US Postal stamps are 1"x7/8" which is quite a bit smaller than the 2.2" screen on the Centro, but I guess you were being facetious...lol

I know there was a lot of complaining about the Centro's size prior to anyone actually seeing it but once people got their hands on it the size complaints diminished rapidly. There will always be people who want a Treo sized device and that is fine but for a lot of folks the smaller phone is a great change, just think about all the complaints you have heard about the Treo being brick-like.

I have had my 700p for 2 years and was going to get a 755p bu my friend got a red Centro and I spent a week with it setting everything up for her and I am seriously thinking about getting a Centro now. The keyboard is smaller but with the gummy rubber keys it is easier for me to type on because I use my thumbnail and there is no slipping on the Centro. The screen is smaller but that just means I hold it a few inches closer to my face when reading something small, no big deal to me.

In order to have a smaller device things have to shrink and there isn't much we can do about the screen unless we can master beaming it into our eyes directly, now using the predictive type keyboard ala Pearl might be a better solution for the keyboard though.

RE: Centro - my take
VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 6:43:35 PM # Q
There is something you can do, use an OLED screen on all Centros. It makes viewing many times better and more natural.

RE: Centro - my take
atrizzah @ 12/10/2007 7:24:06 PM # Q
Dude, chill out. Sure a higher quality screen would be nice, but that's FAR from being the only thing thing separating Palm from market leadership

Peace Out
RE: Centro - my take
VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 7:29:33 PM # Q
Wanna bet?

Palm has the Palm OS simplicity, decent hardware, a good phone, tons of software. They simply need a new sales trigger.
OLED is the single most dramatic move they could make.

Do NOT underestimate the importance of visual clarity and a natural experience on a small mobile device screen.

Mark my words, time will prove me right yet again.

Thank you in advance.

RE: Centro - my take
PacManFoo @ 12/10/2007 8:22:53 PM # Q
---VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 6:15:38 PM #
Because even at 1", it is more fun to watch movies on it than on a Palm device.---

You are joking right? I think I'll stick with the TX for videos, thanks.

I do think this would make a great phone for a 13 year old though.

PDA's Past and Present:
Palm TX (Number 2)
Palm - IIIxe, Vx, M500, M505, Tungsten T, TX
Handspring - Edge, Platinum, Deluxe
Sony - SJ22
Apple - MP110, MP2000, MP2100

RE: Centro - my take
hkklife @ 12/10/2007 8:32:02 PM # Q

A GSM Centro is coming soon, supposedly in January-ish. It'll be the first GSM Garnet treo with a 1.3megapixel camera and it will also supposedly have native voice dialing. It will only be EDGE, of course, but if you can live with that it might end up being a better overall unit than the CDMA version (unlocked, voice dialing, probably slightly better battery life)

Pilot 1000-->Pilot 5000-->PalmPilot Pro-->IIIe-->Vx-->m505-->T|T-->T|T2-->T|C-->T|T3-->T|T5-->TX-->Treo 700P

RE: Centro - my take
VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 9:36:26 PM # Q
hmm and what would be my incentive to move from my 680 reliable workhorse to a new Centro?

See.. I gotta have something, like
a) OLED (equals 100% guaranteed purchase no matter what)
b) wifi would be fun
c) unlocked gsm (a must)
d) for the love of God... 3.5mm! and put the 2.5 mm ALSO for all them dumb headsets. Put both.
e) a bit thinner
f) Palm OS over linux with multitasking
g) 1.3 mp or 2mp would be nice
h) new mp3 video player that can be used by a baby with full finger taps
i) I find it real annoying that I have to tap twice to get NumLock. I want single tap.

RE: Centro - my take
VampireLestat @ 12/10/2007 9:38:25 PM # Q
and find a way to stop the super magnet from killing all my credit cards, debit cards and bus pass.

RE: Centro - my take
JPT|X @ 12/11/2007 9:49:14 AM # Q
I had the centro in my hand- A little bigger would be better, but it is big enough to function. If they release one with wifi- I'm buying.

RE: Centro - my take
SeldomVisitor @ 12/11/2007 9:56:44 AM # Q
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