Palm Pre: our impressions

One of the terminals that has most impressed us in the MWC, although it has not been presented there properly, it has been the Palm Pre, the trick that Palm has made, launching with a totally new platform and discarding everything they had until now to completely renew itself.

If they do not succeed with something like this, it will be difficult for others to do it. And it is that the Palm Pre and its WebOS operating system, based on Linux, show that every detail has been taken care of on this platform, implementing a series of functionalities and a completely new way of working, without "getting inspiration" from other operating systems or phones, while maintaining usability and an intuitive interface.

Technically we can emphasize little more about the Palm Pre that we have not already said, in addition to not being in this aspect where it stands out. Yes it does in design, very attractive to simple, and incorporating a keyboard inherited from previous models of this same manufacturer, which has a lot of experience in making them comfortable to use.

But if you look at the software the thing changes radically. Concepts like Cards, Synergy, direct searches, notifications, calendars, ... make the phone stand out from the competition, offering attractive features. In addition, it does so with a very fluid and smooth interface, without slowdowns in normal use, although at the moment we are not yet facing the definitive version of the software.

One of the curious innovations that allow new ways of managing the phone is that the part under the screen is also touch, so that we can make gestures on it to do certain functions. For example, the main screen is almost empty, except for a few shortcuts, but clicking on that bottom bar and dragging your finger upwards will open the applications menu.

Likewise, this bar allows you to see these shortcuts from anywhere, by pressing on it and lightly sliding your finger towards the screen. Thus, we do not need to be on the home screen to access them. Another example is being able to go back in applications (such as going to a previous page in the browser) by sliding your finger to the left on this bar.

In the middle of the bar we have the only button that the Palm Pre offers on its front. This activates the Cards mode, which, to get an idea, would be similar to a taskbar through which we can move and in which the windows that are open at all times are shown.

We move between them by moving them with our fingers to the left and right and, if we want to close an application we just have to drag it up. The content and what we are doing are automatically saved. By the way, these Cards are liveThat is, while we move through them they continue to run and we can see the different changes.

Contact management is also very intuitive and in fact we hardly need to manage them. And it is that the Palm Pre can import them from various services, such as Gmail or Facebook. Obviously, this would cause us to have many repeated contacts, but the terminal is responsible for grouping them conveniently and obtaining all the data for each of the contacts.

In the event that the contact updates their data, for example, changes their mobile number on Facebook, this change can be automatically reflected in our terminal.

We do not forget the notifications, which appear at the bottom of the screen but allow us to continue working, since they are not placed in the foreground. When we want we can attend to them or minimize them, something indicated by small icons at the bottom. One of the examples we saw was that of a scheduled meeting for which we did not arrive on time, with a simple push of a button the email client opens with the addresses of all attendees and a message indicating that we will be late. We just have to send it and we have it ready.

We finish commenting on direct searches, with which we only have to start typing from the main screen to access a search engine / application launcher, something similar to Spotlight in Mac OS X, with which we have access to contacts, files or searches in Internet, which we can do with Google or on Wikipedia or other sites. The downside of this is that, in principle, there are no plans for sites to search to be user configurable.

The Palm Pre will have an application store, which is developed through Mojo, its SDK, which is based on HTML, CSS and Javascript. For more complex applications, such as games, Flash will probably be available in the terminal in the near future, which will open up more options.

Regarding the departure dates, at the moment only those of the United States are known, where it will appear in June. For Europe we will probably have to wait a little longer, although the version UMTS It is already developed and, in fact, is the one with which we were shown.

We leave you, to finish, with a video of the demonstration that we saw recorded by our colleagues at Noticiasdot

In Xataka | Palm Pre.

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