3 Months Later: The Palm Pre Experience Keeps Getting Better and Better


Michael J. Fox should be my friendIt's been more than 3 months since I first got my hands on the Palm Pre. Yes, I'm technically a blogger, and yes, I received this awesome phone from Palm so stop worrying FTC. As one of 10 winners of the "Real Reviewers Program," Palm provided me with a Pre (along with an unlimited plan) for 6 months! Palm did not tell me to blog about it, but I can't help myself. The truth is that I was a believer since the day it was announced and I am totally a fan. Popular Mechanics ranked the Pre as one one of the 10 most brilliant products of 2009 so I don't think I need to tell you that this phone is amazing.


socialnerdia_palmpixi Palm has made some really interesting announcements recently, including the Palm Pixi, the second WebOS device on the roster. The Pixi is a more affordable, more artistic version of the Pre that should be released soon. Palm is also releasing the Palm Pre in various countries and networks, including a GSM version in Spain on October 14th.

In addition, paid apps are now available and Palm is going to allow open and closed source version of Pre apps to be distributed (which is drastically different better from Apple's app approval process). With over 120 apps and soon to grow exponentially, Palm is finally able to say that it has a good quantity of apps on its catalog. And the quality of the apps is great so far (see below for examples).

socialnerdia_palmpre_flashAlso exciting is the fact that Adobe Flash might be coming to the Pre much sooner than I expected. Yes, you heard that right. Flash Player 10.1 tailored for the Palm Pre. That means Hulu, YouTube, BlogTalkRadio, etc. Sweet. Double Sweet.

But, what's it like having a WebOS phone? Good question...

Here's a summarized example of how I use the Palm Pre on a regular basis:

7:00am- Wake up. I'm not very good at waking up so I have 5 alarms that go off every 5 minutes with different songs.
7:25am - Check my Gmail account, which is beautifully integrated with the device.
7:28am - Check my Hotmail account, which is integrated almost as nicely, but with 5 times the spam.
7:30am - Check my Calendar (which includes my Google Calendar appointments) to make sure I know what I have going on that day.
7:35am - Listen to Pandora while getting ready for work.
7:50am - Open up Tweed, Spaz and Twitter.com to check my @replies and DMs.
socialnerdia_stitcher_screen_sm8:00am - Drive to work streaming  a podcast on Stitcher Podcast Radio (which already has TSNS!)
9:30am - After a meeting with a client, take a photo of the whiteboard. I also write a few notes. Evidence is always good.
9:45am - Can't mentally multiply 482 x 330 quickly enough to impress anyone so I use the Pre's Calculator (which looks freakishly real).
11:00am - Get an email on my Gmail account with a spreadsheet. Download the .xls file, read it, do a few edits, and reply with the updated version attached.
11:50am - Get on Tweed to talk to some friends and random people on Twitter.
12:00pm - Open up the browser to read some favorite web sites in their full splendor (including AdAge, TechCrunch and
12:05pm - Head out for lunch with a friend. Check out restaurant reviews using the GoodFood and Yelp apps.
12:10pm - Use the Sprint Navigation (GPS) app to get to the restaurant.
12:45pm - Show off my Palm Pre by opening up the Sprint TV app. People get more excited about videos than WebOS. Little do they know.
2:0opm - Charge my Pre. Pandora will be heavily used for the next 3 hours because I have some Excel crunching to do.
2:25pm - Check out my photos of the whiteboard from the meeting that morning. Update my notes with further thoughts.
3:25pm - Get a call from my friend Alex. He tells me about his Palm Pre. Hang up. The Pre immediately goes back to Pandora. I LOVE Pandora.
4:00pm - A friend who likes Nascar walks around. I show him the Nascar app just to show off. I don't like Nascar. And I can't seem to be able to delete the app so I might as well use it for something.
5:05pm - Head to the printer to get some reports and accidentally drop the Pre. No worries, it didn't shatter like an iPhone.
6:25pm - At another meeting. Take more photos of the white board and email them to everyone in the meeting.
6:50pm - Check out the mobile version of Facebook to leave messages for a few friends.
7:05pm - Check out the weather on the AccuWeather app. I don't check the weather much, but it's raining tonight so might as well.
7:25pm - Call my wife, who is already at the gym waiting for me.
7:45pm - Work out while listening to Pandora. It seems like Pandora knows me.
7:48pm - I realize that I won't be home to watch a TV show I like. So I schedule a recording using DIRECTV's DVR Scheduler online.
9:30pm - Drive home. Stream the "The BeanCast" podcast directly from their site.
9:45pm - Hang out with Michael J. Fox. Ok, not really. But if I did and Palm had something to do with it, I would disclose it to the FTC.
10:00pm - Make plans to watch a movie on Friday. Check out the Rotten Tomatoes reviews using Flixster.
11:00pm - Open up the browser to head to IM+ for Skype, a web app where I can talk to anyone using Skype all over the world.
11:30pm - Open up the browser to sign in to my blogtalkradio account and schedule a new show.
11:35pm - Make sure my alarms are all on. I need to wake up early the next day.
This is just an example. There are many other apps I use regularly (including FlightView, AP Mobile, Mileage Monitor, etc.). More great free and paid apps ARE coming to the Pre so skeptics beware. So far, the only app that I think is really disappointing is Concerts because it NEVER displays shows in my area (it thinks I'm in Sunnyvale, CA, which is not helpful at all).

The Pre might not be perfect (believe me, I've tested hundreds of mobile phones and none of them are), but I wouldn't change it for any other option in the market today. With increased competition, enhanced user experiences, and continuous innovation, it will be exciting to see where smartphones go from here.

Copyright © Esteban Contreras. All rights reserved.