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View Full Version : Palm's Creativity vs. Windows' Compatibility


Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 01:00 PM
<a href="http://www.businessweek.com/print/magazine/content/03_49/b3861037.htm?mz">http://www.businessweek.com/print/magazine/content/03_49/b3861037.htm?mz</a><br /><br />"While Palms are evolving into new and intriguing shapes, handhelds using rival Microsoft's Pocket PC software seem stuck in a rut. There are dozens of strikingly similar Pocket PCs that basically come in two flavors: those that double as phones and those that don't. The result is that consumers looking for the most innovative products are going to find a lot more to choose from in the world of Palms. For example, the first Pocket PCs with built-in keyboards are just starting to appear -- two years later than in Palm-based products...There's a downside to all this creativity in Palmland. A game created for the zodiac won't run on any other product, in part because Tapwave uses a unique, PC-like video adapter to get maximum performance in action games. Garmin modified the operating system itself, a step Microsoft would never allow, to get better GPS performance. "It's slightly chaotic in the short run," says PalmSource CEO David Nagel. But, he adds, everyone benefits when individual licensees' improvements are rolled into the next version of the PalmSource software."<br /><br />No one questions that some PalmOS devices are really cool in their designs, but ask the average person to pick out a PalmOS device with features X, Y and Z and they will be stumped, standing at the CompUSA PDA counter like a kid in front of a candy stand trying to pick just one candy bar. Take WiFi for example. With the exception of the iPAQ 1910 and maybe a low end Toshiba or two, there aren't many Pocket PCs that aren't WiFi capable. More and more have it integrated, but those that don't can slap in any number of compact flash or SDIO WiFi cards and be up and running within a few minutes of installing drivers. Palm OS devices? Yeah, most have SDIO or other IO capable slots, yet the diversity of devices is making writing drivers difficult. San Disk has given up on WiFi for the <i>millions</i> of Palm OS 4 devices like the M500 series. They are trying to get the SDIO WiFi card working on Palm OS 5 devices but have delayed 4 times. <a href="http://www.palminfocenter.com/view_story.asp?ID=6264">Now it will be Q1 2004.</a> San Disk has removed all evidence from <a href="http://www.sandisk.com/consumer/sdwifi.asp">their web site</a> that they are even working on a Palm OS version of the product, presumably so they can quit postponing it and just release it whenever, if ever, it is done.<br /><br />Meanwhile, you've been able to get the card since it became in available in August for Pocket PCs, along with drivers for 2002 and 2003 devices that support SDIO. That is but one example. Want multimedia? You get Windows Media Player on approximately 100% of Pocket PCs. On Palm devices, you might get a multimedia player, it might be in RAM or ROM and it might be one of any number of third party products on the CD that comes with the device. Versatile, or just confusing?<br /><br />How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding. :wink: What do you think? I know you want some more innovation in hardware. We all do. Would you give up some of the simplicity and comfort we currently have being able to switch from device to device at will and know that a base set of features, a <i><b>rich</b></i> base set of features, will be on any device carrying the Windows Mobile logo? Can you imagine the level of frustration a user might experience if their favorite software program didn't run on their new Pocket PC because the OEM modified the OS as Garmin did to PalmOS? I know as an <a href="http://mvp.support.microsoft.com">MVP</a> I'm glad that the only thing I have to keep up with as far as hardware goes is what extras the OEMs pack in. I don't have to worry about which spreadsheet product comes with each device or which ones support voice recording and what apps are used to do the recording.<br /><br />I think the iPAQ 4300 series with the integrated keyboard is among the first in a series of hardware releases that begins to break the mold that Pocket PCs have been cast in. This is what OEM's design departments are screaming to do. Let Microsoft keep control of the OS. It makes it easier all around. I'll venture to say we'll have some pretty impressive and innovative hardware long before Palm gets the universality back in their platform that they haven't seen since Palm OS 3.5.

shawnc
12-03-2003, 01:53 PM
I hate to be a wet blanket, especially since I agree with most of what Ed say's, but my issue with PPC is not one of functionality. It's a question of reliability. I get tired of wondering whether my alarm will go off. It's a pain in the a&% to be scrambling to get the bus in the morning, only to have active-sync fail, etc.

More compelling hardware would be nice, but I'd be happy if the PPC simply handled the basics with a much higher degree of reliability. Once that happens, I could give a darn about hardware design.

arnage2
12-03-2003, 01:58 PM
Well thats all true. I sold my 3955 last nov. for a tungsten t, the newest most advanced pda available. It had crappy software at first, poor compatability, poor audio, but a very small size. I sold it that may for a ppc. I waited, and waited, and got a 2215 from calif 5 days before release. I sold my ipaq 2215 in oct for a tungsten t3 and hated it. The button arangement was near unusable in games and the multimedia sucked. So then i got a clie nx73v. It was far too difficult to convert media and to transfer it on to the unit. After the clie i said forget palm os AGAIN. I now have a 4155 and love it. I still miss some of palm os' software so im getting a zodiac. (as a 2nd pda) But ppc is by far better for me.

KAMware
12-03-2003, 02:17 PM
I agree with Ed, that from a developers's perspective, I would rather have a stable platform to develop for. But I also luv new hardware. I have one of the new Toshiba E800s with the 480 x 640 screen and it is an example of what we will experience in the future with new hardware expanding from the current standards for the PPC.

When you first get the E800 there is only one application on it that Toshiba allows you to use in the hi-res mode. When you go to hi-res mode they disable the OS menu system so you cannot try to use the other programs.

Naturally someone created a hack to get around that little restriction! :D
Now we can run all those programs and guess what. A lot of them will not work! Since they are not designed to use that size screen. And some them work great on that screen. Ironically most all of the Microsoft programs work great on the hi-res screen.

So if MS does, as it is rumored, change the requirements for PPC hardware to allow higher res screens there are going to be a bunch of people out there jumpin mad because their favoriate application(s) do not work on the latest PPCs!

There is something to be said about standards. They serve a purpose. But they also can be restrictive enough to stifle inovation. It is a difficult fence to walk for MS.

dh
12-03-2003, 02:21 PM
I happen to agree with many of the comments regarding the PPC hardware. The design has been in a rut for some time and I'm happy to see that there are signs that things are changing.

The two models that currently have built in keyboards are certainly not examples of creative design (Sony as well as Sharp do this ten times better) but it's a start.

I personally would not go back to POS even though I like the hardware. My PPC with it's two expansion slots and fantastic applications isn't something I'm going to give up on.

Hopefully next year is going to bring us new models that will seriously compete in the design arena.

golfingtigger
12-03-2003, 03:04 PM
As an iPaq user and a Treo 600 user I have to say that I am really torn on this one. I started with the Nino (color) and then went to the Palm Vx and subsequent Handspring Prism. Every time I have gone back to Palm, the biggest reason was for the compatibility of all the software. Windows CE had too many different processors and variations to use all applications reliably. My how times change...

Now the table is turned. I have this wonderful Treo but I do encounter problems trying to get all software to work on it (of course, I have to have patience, it is new). But there is no need for all devices to do all things that may not be important to all people.

Voice recording on a Pocket PC is something that I have never used.

Office compatibility has always been hampered by Microsoft's own implementation which strips your documents to shreds, making way for a Palm product to dominate in this area.

Full screen handwriting recognition is available to Palms, although, in most instances it's a letter at a time. (Never did like that on my iPaq because if I wrote a screen of stuff, some of it would be so screwed up that I felt I wasted too much time correcting it).

Multitasking is something that is limited on the Palm, but Microsoft's implementation of "smart application closure" leaves much to be desired.

Innovation is great, but to really sell, give the masses what they truly need so that these things become more mainstream and hopefully save the industry as a whole. An example is the Sidekick, which is light years behind both Palm and Pocket PC in functionality, but people are buying it because it delivers what the masses really need (phone, calendar, contacts, messenger, e-mail, and web). It also brings just enough innovation to get the geeks to take notice! The first camp to get that formula right in the future might be the head-turner!

Jimmy Dodd
12-03-2003, 03:04 PM
MS seems to take a lot of flak for limiting the design of PPCs in the name of stability, but most of the design stagnation is in other areas. Until this year we didn't have PPCs with: built-in keyboards or built-in cameras. And, as far as I know, we still don't have PPCs with built-in covers (a la the now defunct HP 548). Except for the new pair of Toshibas all PPCs are silver and/or grey. They all come with basically the same software (each has a smattering of proprietary stuff, but nothing to make it stand out of the crowd while perusing them at BestBuy or CompUSA).

PPCs compete only on price, size, expansion, and built-in WiFi or Bluetooth (the latter of which is hardly a significant selling point to 99.9% of non-techie consumers), and brand recognition.

None of these items is mandated by MS. I think its time that the OEMs quit playing it safe with merely trying to come up with smaller/faster devices and try to take the lead like Sony did with the design of POS machines. Perhaps this is what Toshiba is doing with their new line of devices. Too bad they irked so many customers with their WM2003 upgrade policy.

12-03-2003, 03:42 PM
How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding.

Ed, your criticisms the Palm OS are a bit out of date. Quite a few offer voice recording, Office compatibility on par with the Pocket PC, and full-screen text input. What you said was true... until about a year ago when the Palm OS made the jump to ARM-based processors.

You saying these things now about the Palm OS is the same as if someone wrote today that all Pocket PCs are too big and crash too often. While these complaints may once have been true, they definitely aren't any more.

We do agree in one area, the very limited multitasking offered by OS 5 is hobbling the platform. The fact that you have to wait while your email is delivered is irritating. We'll have to wait and see if PalmSource can add multitasking to OS 6 without making it a crash magnet.

As I understand it, the delays in the release of the Palm OS version of the SD Wi-Fi card have to do with companies arguing over licensing, not any technical problems. But you are correct, until this card comes out, there are far more Pocket PC options for Wi-Fi than Palm OS ones.

ScottG
12-03-2003, 03:46 PM
The article sounds pretty accurate.

I've been using Pocket PCs since 1998 or 1999. My Jornada 568 is now dying. I'd like to replace it with a combination phone/PDA that is more PDA than phone. Much as I'd like to get a Pocket PC-compatible device, after reading specs on what's out there, it sounds as if the Treo 600 might be the best solution. The Pocket PC solutions seem to be yesterday's technology. The XDA II sounds fantastic, but I'm unwilling to mortgage my kids for the purchase price, to import it from a country that I can't even locate on a world globe, and mess around with SIMs, unlocking, and a host of other phone terms that I don't even understand.

If anyone can suggest a good choice for the Pocket PC, I'd love to hear it.

ddwire
12-03-2003, 04:23 PM
Every body will always have a favorite.. I choose Pocket PC not for Microsoft but because it works best for me. I currently use the Hitachi G1000 with an excelent builtin keyboard and phone. One thing I would like to see is the opporating system become generic like windows for a desk top. That way when a new version comes out every one is eligable for an upgrade, the hardware mfg can then offer a service pack for a specific device to add customization if desired.
Dan :D

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 04:27 PM
How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding.

Ed, your criticisms the Palm OS are a bit out of date. Quite a few offer voice recording, Office compatibility on par with the Pocket PC, and full-screen text input. What you said was true... until about a year ago when the Palm OS made the jump to ARM-based processors.
Ed, I didn't say these things weren't available, but that they weren't universally available, which leads to confusion.

• Your own words - "quite a few offer voice recording." It isn't universal and those buying devices on ebay are not nearly as likely to get voice recording.
• Office compatibility - yes, with the possible exception of the base Zire, 100% of Palm devices now have Office apps bundled. They are not the same across OEMs and most still require desktop converters (so email attachments are useless), and just having them on the CD doesn't mean they are installed, so beaming a Word document to a co-worker doesn't mean they can open it.
• Full screen HWR is now possible with ARM chips, but frankly that is like saying Voice Commands are now available on Pocket PCs. Yeah, the software works, but few come with it. It is almost always a 3rd party addin.

My point was not what is PalmOS capable of. It is what is the platform does out of the box if you randomly pick up a unit at CompUSA. With PalmOS, it is a crap shoot as to what that device will support. That was my point, the point of the BW article and David Nagel's point in his "It's slightly chaotic in the short run" comment. The trade off is PalmOS devices have some killer hardware at the temporary expense of compatibility and universality. Pocket PCs on the other hand have a very rich feature set across the board with the only real common options being Bluetooth, WiFi and in a few cases, GPS.

Jonathan1
12-03-2003, 04:36 PM
This is why I still have a window sticker in my car that says Friends don't let friend use Palm. For as far as Palm has come in the last 3 years they still are lagging behind the Pocket PC in several key areas.
Not so much in MS Office compatibility since just about ever Palm comes with software to view and edit Word/Excel files or in voice notes since the latest Tungston T series all have voice memo capabilities.

But with multitasking, file system, and an overhauled GUI. I really hate Palm's GUI. I never could get use to it.

The claim was that Palm OS 6 was going to be a massive overhaul. OS 5 was a transition OS but OS 6 was to be the real deal and that that OS would make its way into the hands of OEM's by 4th quarter of this year. Last I checked 4th quarter is drawing to a close and there is little news of OS 6 other then its now sometime in 1st quarter when it will be released. :? This is not good at least for Palm. I've seen this same behavior before.....in Netscape. They too were scrambling to keep up with Microsoft and ended up making some massive blunders along the way. I fear that Palm, in the end, will end up being another dead corpse on the pile of Microsoft competitors.
I want to keep the faith that Palm will still be around in five years but at this rate they will be lucky to be around in two if they don't get their act together.

The reason I even give a crap about Palm is that even with competition Microsoft has only inched along in their progress and updates to the Pocket PC. :worried: It scares me to think what would happen if Microsoft had no completion at all. Also there is the fact that Microsoft's interest in the Pocket PC may be waning. They are starting to appear more interested in smartphones then PDA’s. The last thing we need is Palm getting killed off, Microsoft losing interest, and that leaves us with????

PlayAgain?
12-03-2003, 04:37 PM
Duck! Someone said something nice about a Palm and Ed's got his Big Gun out again!



:snipersmile:

mbranscum
12-03-2003, 04:54 PM
I am a longtime PPC user and currently use a 2215 for business software. I am also a TREO 600 user. I must admit, I really prefer the Palm OS and probably would have already switch BACK to Palm completely if my business software was available for the OS. The TREO 600 is a killer phone. Why couldn't someone in the PPC field develop something comparable??? I'm not walking about a Smartphone that you have to use T9 on, or a PPC phone that look rediculous when you're talking on it.

teq
12-03-2003, 05:14 PM
(...)
But with multitasking, file system, and an overhauled GUI. I really hate Palm's GUI. I never could get use to it.

(...)
Couldn't agree less! I've switched from a Tungsten T to a IPAQ 2215 3 months ago and I love it - but the Palm's GUI seems superior to me. My favorite example: dialogue boxes with only "yes" and "no" buttons - argh! (e.g. "Open this occurence? (Tap No to open the entire series.) Tap 'X' to cancel.") Unbelievable!

IMHO, Palm's GUI may not look as sexy as PPC's, but it's far more practical to use.

What really brought me over to PPC was:
- the 2215 sleek HW design (small and powerful - and I love the integrated CF-slot)
- clear type (yes, really, I think it's cool, compared to Palm's 320x320 resolution which wasn't practical at all, offering no scalable fonts)
- digitizer issues on my Tungsten (it needed recalibration all the time)

Cheers,
teq

12-03-2003, 05:35 PM
My point was not what is PalmOS capable of. It is what is the platform does out of the box if you randomly pick up a unit at CompUSA. With PalmOS, it is a crap shoot as to what that device will support. That was my point, the point of the BW article and David Nagel's point in his "It's slightly chaotic in the short run" comment. The trade off is PalmOS devices have some killer hardware at the temporary expense of compatibility and universality. Pocket PCs on the other hand have a very rich feature set across the board with the only real common options being Bluetooth, WiFi and in a few cases, GPS.
Good point.

I think the challege for the Pocket PC licensees at this point is to add in some creativity while still providing that same rich feature set. With devices like the iPAQ h4355 and the Toshiba e805, we're seeing the beginnings of that creativity. I'd like to see a clamshell Pocket PC with a good-sized keyboard and maybe even one specifically targeted at games. There's no doubt there a far more high-end games for the Pocket PC than there are for Palm OS.

jmarkevich
12-03-2003, 06:02 PM
I hate multitasking on a PDA.

OK, in a very few cases it makes sense - a MP3 player, or as someone mentioned, downloading mail. But otherwise it makes about as much sense as my PS2 multitasking. I only have one screen, I only have one task, and I want 100% performance out of the poor burdened hardware.

I used to be a POWER Palm user - I edited C in pedit, flicked over to OnBoard C to compile, then test the app, all from keyboard commands (thanks to LapTopHack). It was relatively speedy and responsive. Now with x times the processing power and n times the memory, I still have to tell people to wait when I have to give them a phone number. Searching for a phrase in my collection of notes while talking with someone is an exercise in futility.

I switched because the CPU was too slow, the screen was too chunky, and black and white was getting tired. Oh yeah, I got it given to me through work. :)

Palm's hacks were a revolutionary... hack... thanks to the fact that PalmOS was NOT multitasking. It was developed 'way back when they were still PalmPilots and remained valid and incredibly powerful until OS5 came out. Now thanks to multitasking -- we have to lose a lot of functionality.

I've lost appointments because of ActiveSync, reminders are useless for me (they never work), text editing is slow and cumbersome (I really miss pedit's Title Case command, and AMAZING search capabilities, amongst a dozen other things). I'll chalk most of this up to weak apps on the PPC side, but forcing everything to be multitasking-aware does contribute (think of the complexity and overhead in locking appointment records for modification while syncing). You can never get as fast and responsive as Palm has been for YEARS with y number of programs running in the background.

There's one good rant for y'all :D

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 06:26 PM
My favorite example: dialogue boxes with only "yes" and "no" buttons - argh! (e.g. "Open this occurence? (Tap No to open the entire series.) Tap 'X' to cancel.") Unbelievable!
So, when opening a recurring appointment, how does the Palm GUI handle asking you if you want to open:
• The recurring appointment and modify everything
• This instance and modify it to create a one time exception to the recurrence
• Never mind. I didn't mean to tap it.

adamz
12-03-2003, 06:31 PM
I've been using Pocket PCs since 1998 or 1999. My Jornada 568 is now dying. I'd like to replace it with a combination phone/PDA that is more PDA than phone. Much as I'd like to get a Pocket PC-compatible device, after reading specs on what's out there, it sounds as if the Treo 600 might be the best solution. The Pocket PC solutions seem to be yesterday's technology. The XDA II sounds fantastic, but I'm unwilling to mortgage my kids for the purchase price, to import it from a country that I can't even locate on a world globe, and mess around with SIMs, unlocking, and a host of other phone terms that I don't even understand.

If anyone can suggest a good choice for the Pocket PC, I'd love to hear it.

The Treo 600 doesn't come close to the XDA II. For me, if it doesn't have a built-in phone and Bluetooth headset support, forget it! I could care less about a keyboard, they just waste space that could be used for screen realestate the majority of the time. It would be nice if the XDA 2 had customizable buttons in more ergonomic locations such that one-handed usage would be easier. You know... instead of the practically useless Send/End call buttons surrounding the directional button, something like a Start Menu and Context Sensitive Menu button would be much more useful for navigating functions one-handedly.
But for typing stuff, no one's going to use the Treo 600 keyboard one handed. In this case, two-handed Calligrapher is fine.
I can't imagine wanting to hold any type of phone up to my head ever again. When a phone call comes in, I just stick the Bluespoon headset in my ear and press the answer button on the side. No fumbling with wired headsets, no BIG PDA Phones held against my head... it's beautiful! And I can still use the PDA with one or both hands to add conference call attendees, take notes, etc.

This is how it should be.

klinux
12-03-2003, 06:38 PM
Hotsync works better than ActiveSync and works on PCs and Macs.

--------------
Current PDAs - Tungsten T, Dell X5, Casio E-125, and Handspring Visor

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 06:56 PM
I hate multitasking on a PDA.

OK, in a very few cases it makes sense - a MP3 player, or as someone mentioned, downloading mail. But otherwise it makes about as much sense as my PS2 multitasking. I only have one screen, I only have one task, and I want 100% performance out of the poor burdened hardware.
Or when I open an email to send someone some info, switch to CALC to quickly make a calculation for the email, switch to Pocket Informant to check my schedule on meeting this person about the issue, switch back to inbox, with the email still open an intact, and press send.

Or dozens and dozens of other scenarios. Try copying contact info from a PalmOS email to the address book then try doing it from the Pocket PC. The PPC will let you toggle back and forth between the message and contact form. PalmOS will close the Contact form each time you "switch" back. How productive is that?

Deslock
12-03-2003, 07:12 PM
How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding.
Ed, your criticisms the Palm OS are a bit out of date. Quite a few offer voice recording, Office compatibility on par with the Pocket PC, and full-screen text input. What you said was true... until about a year ago when the Palm OS made the jump to ARM-based processors.
Ed, I didn't say these things weren't available, but that they weren't universally available, which leads to confusion.

Holy crap, you even quoted yourself showing that's not what you wrote. Here, maybe the emphasis will help:

How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding.
What leads to confusion is website editors writing things that aren't true. If you want to point out that not all Palms offer those features, then write "not all Palms offer those features" instead of "You don't get that on any Palm device".

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 07:17 PM
Holy crap, you even quoted yourself showing that's not what you wrote. Here, maybe the emphasis will help:

How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding.
What leads to confusion is website editors writing things that aren't true.
Name one PalmOS device that offers true across the board multitasking, not the one off media player stuff on some devices or hacked up simulated multitasking with some of the forms.

Notice my quote said "you don't get that" not "you don't get those" and the placement of the commas and period makes "that" refer to multitasking, not the other stuff.

Deslock, it is clear [email protected] understood what I meant as did everyone else as you are the only one to confuse the issue. Sorry I wasn't even more clear in my statement.

SandersP
12-03-2003, 07:26 PM
Hotsync works better than ActiveSync and works on PCs and Macs.

I agree about lack of good mac support, but who cares aside of 3% of desktop user.

but hotsync works better than AS because it doesn't do jack, It's a very basi conduit, sooner or later it will have to adapt to new handheld need and guess what? more or less same feature than AS is trying to provide.

This doesn't mean AS doesn't need some work, but coparing to hotsync is rediculous.

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 07:46 PM
Hotsync works better than ActiveSync and works on PCs and Macs.
Unless you have a Sony, and then it doesn't work on Macs. At least Pocket PCs consistantly don't work on Macs. ;) I know there are two Mac sync apps for Pocket PCs that are third party. I'm sure someone has a Sony PalmOS sync tool for Macs as well, but none of those are out of the box.

TawnerX
12-03-2003, 07:52 PM
How about voice recording? How about Office compatibility? How about full screen handwriting recognition? How about multitasking? Oh, never mind. You don't get that on any Palm device, simulated multitasking notwithstanding.

Ed, your criticisms the Palm OS are a bit out of date. Quite a few offer voice recording, Office compatibility on par with the Pocket PC, and full-screen text input. What you said was true... until about a year ago when the Palm OS made the jump to ARM-based processors.

-if not all model has voice recording, than it will break compatibility for apps that requires 'mic'. eg. voice command, some games, sound tuner etc.

-I am sorry to inform you but POS office cpability is nowhere NEAR what PPC has to offer. (yes you can keep that Textmaker port pipe dream as a proof that POS has same office capability than PPC. And Amusingly Brighthand hasn't done the 'round tripping test between PPC and POS since textmaker comes out. I wonder why. Better hurry up doing it before steve is having another epiphany about PPC. Can't bash PPC then)

-full screen text input? How about full screen HWR instead of gesture typing for this so called 'text input'?


You saying these things now about the Palm OS is the same as if someone wrote today that all Pocket PCs are too big and crash too often. While these complaints may once have been true, they definitely aren't any more.

I don't see you protesting the Business week point about Garming, when you know mio 168 has been out, or that h2210 can take CF GPS that results in similar form factor as garmin, better GPS performance even. (so mch for "definitely aren't anymore" gambit)


We do agree in one area, the very limited multitasking offered by OS 5 is hobbling the platform. The fact that you have to wait while your email is delivered is irritating. We'll have to wait and see if PalmSource can add multitasking to OS 6 without making it a crash magnet.
right lets hold the praise how OS 6.0 will be the POS savior. Some dubious PIC editor said the same thing a year ago about OS 5.0 is going to be the 'innevitable winner'. Here we are still trying to spin why POS still can't have some features that PPC users considere basic, not to mention nose diving marketshare. wew... innevitable winner indeed.


As I understand it, the delays in the release of the Palm OS version of the SD Wi-Fi card have to do with companies arguing over licensing, not any technical problems. But you are correct, until this card comes out, there are far more Pocket PC options for Wi-Fi than Palm OS ones.

Yeah I am sure Hagiwara has same licensing problem too. lol
nice try, but how about 'reading' stuff you yourself write.

http://www.brighthand.com/article/Wi-Fi_Memory_Stick_Pushed_Back_to_March

Sandisk has licensing problem with Palm, but they don't with PPC. Nevermind that the SDcard hardware is completely the same and sychip doesn't give a damned who sandisk is selling their finished product to. It couldn't be possibly be driver problem.

Hagiware WiFi is ONLY for Sony model, nobody else can use it, and yet they also has licensing problem.

can you say : 'spin'?

-I've heard the same thing about replaceable battery is an ugly feature in PDA, and non replacable is all PDA users need.

-How about PPC SDIO brewing crisis. omigod. SDIO won't run on ANY PPC. It's doom. (yeah okay. the sandisk WiFi doesn't run on any PPC model apparently, but it run perfectly o all POS model. once the licensing issue is sorted out I am sure.)
http://www.brighthand.com/articles/print.php?urlName=PocketPCs_SDIO_Crisis

PS. try not to be so obvious when spinning thing. It doesn't pass the giggle test.

huangzhinong
12-03-2003, 07:52 PM
I hate multitasking on a PDA.


Never mind. PalmSource does know most palm users need multitasking. They also promised for a long time they will implement(sort of) in Palm OS6. Like it or not, it's truth.

DA in OS5 is so welcomed by Palm users, which is enough to say Old single task Palm OS comes to end.

ScottG
12-03-2003, 08:36 PM
The Treo 600 doesn't come close to the XDA II.

The XDA II does sound good, but there are a number of aspects about it that worry me. Can you tell me how much you paid for the XDA II, where you had to import it from, and how difficult it was to get it working with a US carrier? I've heard people talk about SIMs and unlocking the phone, but I have no idea where one gets a SIM and what it means to unlock the phone. It sounds like a hassle when compared to just buying a Treo that's sold in this country and works with Sprint, my cellphone carrier). Also, if you bought the XDA overseas, do you have any concern about getting service for it if that becomes necessary?

Thanks!

svenllr
12-03-2003, 08:57 PM
I think golfingtigger hit it on the nose. I was an avid PPC user for almost four years before I gave up and went back to Palm for the Tungsten T3.

Nearly all the things I could do on my iPAQ 5455 running PPC2003 I can do on my T3. Sure, Wi-Fi isn't an option right now, but I rarely used it. The added price of Hotspots makes it a disappointing technology for handhelds and when I'm at home to use it for free, well, why limit my screen space and not just use my HUGE monitor? Seems silly not to.

Yes, the MP3 playing is much better on the iPAQ, but I have heard some other PPC units that equal my T3 in quality. So, that's not an issue for me, as much.

What was an issue was reliability. Like all Microsoft products, reliable and Microsoft are never used in the positive in the same sentence. Man, the Bluetooth integration SUCKS! I would get dropped connections constantly with T-Mobile. Five minute solid connection was my all time longest connection. That's a joke! As a test, I tried my cousins Tungsten T on the Bluetooth and with its easy configuration and 20 minute solid connection, I bought a T3 the next day!

Microsoft is into fluff, not meat. Instead of making a better OS, they made a flashier bells and whistle one. Yes, I do like the UI much better on PPC then Palm, but with Palm's application open speed (hey, where did that colored clock dial go?! :) ) and it's solid reliability, I don't care about the lacking UI and the lesser Wi-Fi problem. I'm sure Palm OS 6 will fix the limits and it'll be better then PPC2003.

And about the voice recorder. Man, I gave up on that feature on my iPAQ way back in the 3600 days. Dude, if I press a button and start talking, I expect it to start recording when the button is pressed, not five seconds later. This feature was and is still useless. I tried it on my 5455 and it still lagged. I used the button for the MP3 player instead. Better results. So, let's not compare the voice recorder thing when once again, MS is too busy with the color clock wheel then really getting the application working. And yes, it works like a charm on my T3.

Yes, I am thankful to the PocketPC for leading the way in the last four years and that's what makes competition so great. It woke up Palm. Now Palm is making better stuff and Microsoft will continue their quest for making unreliable fluff -- er -- innovate as Steve says. ;)

jmarkevich
12-03-2003, 09:10 PM
I hate multitasking on a PDA.


Never mind. PalmSource does know most palm users need multitasking. They also promised for a long time they will implement(sort of) in Palm OS6. Like it or not, it's truth.

DA in OS5 is so welcomed by Palm users, which is enough to say Old single task Palm OS comes to end.

What part of hate was I unclear about? I have an iPaq. It multitasks. I hate it. I certainly don't need it, and if you scroll back, you'll see I used to be a power user, before the iPaq broke me of using my PDA for everything.

jmarkevich
12-03-2003, 09:15 PM
I hate multitasking on a PDA.

OK, in a very few cases it makes sense - a MP3 player, or as someone mentioned, downloading mail. But otherwise it makes about as much sense as my PS2 multitasking. I only have one screen, I only have one task, and I want 100% performance out of the poor burdened hardware.
Or when I open an email to send someone some info, switch to CALC to quickly make a calculation for the email, switch to Pocket Informant to check my schedule on meeting this person about the issue, switch back to inbox, with the email still open an intact, and press send.

Or dozens and dozens of other scenarios. Try copying contact info from a PalmOS email to the address book then try doing it from the Pocket PC. The PPC will let you toggle back and forth between the message and contact form. PalmOS will close the Contact form each time you "switch" back. How productive is that?

Now, tell my why that requires MULTITASKING. As soon as you say "switch to" you mean to say "suspend". Sure, they could be a little more advanced about storing form persistence, but keeping everything running at the same time is a sloppy and stupid way to do it. It works on a desktop, not on that overburdened PDA.

:soapbox: :treadmill:

I guess I'll just fume until the next time someone posts a "Palm is only 160x160 black and white 2MB RAM!" post.

yslee
12-03-2003, 09:27 PM
It has to be Ed doing the Palm bashing. And Ed vs Ed, what a match!

Despite a lot of comments and defenses from both sides, to me both platforms are simply not perfect. For instance, PPC has built in support for Office out of the box, but it's not that great (Word needs a lot of improvement especially), that you might as well get a 3rd party app, which, in that case, you aren't that different from Palm. And Palm offerings for Office compatible suites have a higher profile (to me anyway).

Palm might have some really exciting hardware, like having screen resolutions that exceed the PPCs, but in other areas, like networking, I feel the PPC is far better. Networking with a Palm feels like mucking around with a hack of sorts.

As for AS and Hotsync, I've had problems with both of them before, so they're even to me.

While I do agree with the article that there is some kind of design rut in the PPC camp, I think MS has a good deal of responsibility as well; they just don't seem very interested in making improvements. Nothing much has really changed ever since the 36xx series from Compaq, and look at how much the Palm machines have advanced since then.

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 09:38 PM
What was an issue was reliability. Like all Microsoft products, reliable and Microsoft are never used in the positive in the same sentence. Man, the Bluetooth integration SUCKS! I would get dropped connections constantly with T-Mobile. Five minute solid connection was my all time longest connection.
Everyone here knows I am no fan of bluetooth. That said, I have it and use it. My 3970 and 2215 both have it and it is connected to my Nokia 3650 and my t68 before that. I would go to Starbucks to work (one without WiFi) and slap my iPAQ in the Stowaway keyboard and get to work. I'd connect to T-Mob. via bluetooth to have IM up and running. It would easily go over an hour with no dropped connections.

Your complaint is valid to be sure, but misdirected. You should look at the phone or coverage in your area. Being bluetooth, it could also be the combo of your particular phone and particular Pocket PC. It is entirely possible your Palm unit will work better with it. Man I hate bluetooth.

Ed Hansberry
12-03-2003, 09:43 PM
While I do agree with the article that there is some kind of design rut in the PPC camp, I think MS has a good deal of responsibility as well; they just don't seem very interested in making improvements. Nothing much has really changed ever since the 36xx series from Compaq, and look at how much the Palm machines have advanced since then.
Yeah, but come one. In 2000, the most advanced PalmOS units had 8MB of RAM, few storage cards, zippy 25MHz processors, mostly greyscale screens, etc. It would be like me pointing to a wooden go-kart in 2000 and a new car today and saying "Wow - look how far the Hansberry car company has gone in just 3 years." You have to take into account the 3 year old unit was from the stone ages.

adamz
12-03-2003, 09:47 PM
The Treo 600 doesn't come close to the XDA II.

The XDA II does sound good, but there are a number of aspects about it that worry me. Can you tell me how much you paid for the XDA II, where you had to import it from, and how difficult it was to get it working with a US carrier? I've heard people talk about SIMs and unlocking the phone, but I have no idea where one gets a SIM and what it means to unlock the phone. It sounds like a hassle when compared to just buying a Treo that's sold in this country and works with Sprint, my cellphone carrier). Also, if you bought the XDA overseas, do you have any concern about getting service for it if that becomes necessary?

Thanks!

I had it imported from the UAE. It was not difficult at all to get working on T-Mobile USA. Just insert the SIM card and it works. You get a SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) card from any GSM provider. The one I bought was not hardware locked to specific GSM provider SIM cards and therefore will work with any SIM card. There's no need to go to a store and have them activate it if you already have a GSM account and SIM card. If you're on a non-GSM mobile phone network then you're stuck with using whichever phones that they choose to provide. Yeah, there's less hassle, but also very few choices.

I believe the XDA II does have an international warranty honored by HTC, but I havn't looked much into it since I'm just enjoying the PDA phone so much.

It costs about $850 without a bluetooth headset, but it's absolutely worth it.

jnunn
12-03-2003, 09:51 PM
Now, tell my why that requires MULTITASKING. As soon as you say "switch to" you mean to say "suspend". Sure, they could be a little more advanced about storing form persistence, but keeping everything running at the same time is a sloppy and stupid way to do it. It works on a desktop, not on that overburdened PDA.

My old iPAQ3600 on PPC2000 with a meager 32MB of RAM handles multitasking of TextMaker, Lextionary, Reader, PI, and often a calculator or Excel without ever a problem. I need multitasking because I do not want to lose my place and waste time in saving (or 'suspending') when I switch back and forth between these applications. I use GigaBar to mulitask via a single touch of an icon which makes multitasking a non-issue, I never even think about it.

adamz
12-03-2003, 10:12 PM
Now, tell my why that requires MULTITASKING. As soon as you say "switch to" you mean to say "suspend". Sure, they could be a little more advanced about storing form persistence, but keeping everything running at the same time is a sloppy and stupid way to do it. It works on a desktop, not on that overburdened PDA.


When I switch to a different program, the previous program is still doing what it was doing and that's how it should be... be it playing music through Windows Media Player, recording audio, downloading a web page, talking on the phone, or sending a series of email messages. I can listen to music while playing Pocket NESter nintendo games, surfing the web, or reading a book. I don't want my phone call to end when I switch to Pocket Streets to look up a location. Also, I want to still be able to use other functions of the device while syncronizing via Bluetooth. Those are things that require multitasking.

jmarkevich
12-03-2003, 11:07 PM
When I switch to a different program, the previous program is still doing what it was doing and that's how it should be... be it playing music through Windows Media Player, recording audio, downloading a web page, talking on the phone, or sending a series of email messages. I can listen to music while playing Pocket NESter nintendo games, surfing the web, or reading a book. I don't want my phone call to end when I switch to Pocket Streets to look up a location. Also, I want to still be able to use other functions of the device while syncronizing via Bluetooth. Those are things that require multitasking.

All I really need to say is... scroll back. :roll:

I gave a few examples of where multitasking is valid, and the music one and the e-mail are some of the few. I also believe a phone belongs in a separate device, so that one is a red herring for me...

I'm glad you can switch to PocketInformant while Pocket NESter is still playing in the background AND also record while playing music, all at the same time? While talking on the phone? And surfing the web? I know, you can use your C64 emulator and Pocket NESter AT THE SAME TIME.

Let me guess, you leave TextMaker running in the back too - and you somehow think that PDAs are *supposed* to run that slowly.

What PPC needs is a terminal server, so multiple people can log in to your PDA and run their own apps. Yeah! Think of how much blind prejucide and frothing bigotry that will generate! Awesome! :|

RobertCF
12-03-2003, 11:22 PM
Is Ed on crack, or what? Since when has any Palm-OS device had a "cool design"? My gosh, beauty IS in the eye of the beholder, and Ed must be myopic. I'll agree that some of the rectangles that have come out of the PocketPC camp have been ho-hum, but in most cases that's part of what started bringing the prices down. Oh, and don't get me started on this retarded trend at putting thumb boards on PDAs. How unbelievably stupid. On one hand people whine about how big (I don't get that, either) PocketPCs are and yet they want a hobbled, ugly excuse for input slapped onto the "monsterous" device? Good grief.

And, as far as I'm concerned, there is such a thing as too small and too thin. Some PDAs are getting so thin that you have to hold onto them like a newborn baby because they're in danger of breaking under the strain of being held! That's immediately what I thought of when I tried out the Dell X3 and the wafer-thin iPaqs coming out. Too, too flimsy. And how about the "smart phones". For pete's sake, how small is everyone going to accept their screens? I was already angry that most PDA manufacturers went with the smaller screens that my old iPaq 3630 had. I've got a Dell X5 now, and though it performs better than my 3630, I find myself wishing for the larger screen constantly. And I've yet to see a Palm-based unit with even near that real estate. A fourth of the frelling screen is taken up with THEIR input method. The only half-way decent Palm-based devices to ever come out were the Handspring devices, and we know what happened with that.

I just don't see what in blazes Ed thinks makes a "cool design" in a PDA. Either it has a functional form to it or it doesn't. There's only just so much realistic and COMFORTABLE leeway you have in something like that. The form pretty much follows the function.

I look at cell phones of late and I have YET to buy one. They've gotten too small to be useful as a handheld phone (I know, I've TRIED to use other people's phones on occasion). Oh, and of course, they NOW want you to be able to play GAMES and do MESSAGING on them? Stupid, stupid, stupid. If they are pushing for small, why don't they just make a Star Trek communicator badge and be done with it?(Now, THAT is a cool design) Then it would serve as ornamentation AND function, and I wouldn't look like a big man in a little coat trying to hold and use what laughably passes for a phone these days.

bucho
12-03-2003, 11:23 PM
That's still no excuse to have the same "dull" design on every PocketPC. 3-4" portrait screen with a pad and 4 buttons on the bottom and extension slots on the top... I guess most of it is driven by the resolution restrictions, but there is still lots of room for improvement for better ergonomic designs that would not impact any of the features on the device... For example:

- full flip device with built-in keybord (like the Sony units)
- maybe a tiny 2" screen, sub-100g device
- a simple flip-covers that Jornada had and many people liked

None of these should restrict any of the features that all the Pocket PCs have...

Janak Parekh
12-03-2003, 11:26 PM
Now, tell my why that requires MULTITASKING. As soon as you say "switch to" you mean to say "suspend". Sure, they could be a little more advanced about storing form persistence, but keeping everything running at the same time is a sloppy and stupid way to do it. It works on a desktop, not on that overburdened PDA.
I take it you're speaking from a OS perspective. Are you suggesting that the OS support the equivalent of application swapping, a la Windows 1.x? That might work, but given a sufficiently good preemptive multitasking kernel, the performance hit is not significant. My question to you is, why not? If you're running only one task on the preemptive kernel, it's going to allocate darn near every CPU cycle to the running application. Preemption can also be lightweight. There's a good reason PalmOS6 is going to support it... ;) You might think there's only a few applications, but some of them are fundamental, and will get more common with connected devices, where you inherently multitask -- especially as we become more "persistently connected".

As to why Windows CE/Pocket PC is unresponsive for you -- I don't know. I get within 1-second times for launching apps on a WM2003 device, and while my little puttering 200MHz 2k2 device is a bit slower, it's entirely tolerable for me. PalmOS is faster, no doubt, but it's not strictly because PalmOS isn't multitasking -- in fact, the PalmOS does support threads in a very limited scope. It's more that it's simply a smaller, leaner OS, and that's the basis of Ed's argument to some extent in that there isn't a standard feature set -- there are lots of optional modules, but that leads to a less consistent out-of-box experience. It'll be interesting when PalmOS 6 comes out... if it's faster and better in every regard, that'll be great fodder for competition, but I'll believe it when I see it. 8)

--janak

Deslock
12-04-2003, 12:21 AM
Deslock, it is clear [email protected] understood what I meant as did everyone else as you are the only one to confuse the issue. Sorry I wasn't even more clear in my statement.
Me too. Your post wasn't clear in a lot of ways: You listed a bunch of things that Palm can do along with one thing it doesn't do; you pointed out that not all Palm devices come with media players in ROM, but that was true for PPCs as recent as the 1910; you mentioned Palm doesn't do multitasking while you were making an argument that has little to do with multitasking... it's just as logical (or rather illogical) to say "want reliable alarms? Oh wait, that's not a standard PPC feature."

Anyway, I don't see choosing Palms as being any more confusing than choosing PPCs. Sure, Palm's standard application set is smaller, but while looking for both a Palm and a PPC, you have to do a little research before choosing. You want a PPC with backup software built in? You want bluetooth? You want wifi? You want a keyboard? You want image-viewing software? Well, you have to read the box because some PPCs have those programs and some don't.

Back to the article, I think Microsoft's strategy is better than Palm's in this case. Look at the Zodiac... it's got an extremely impressive feature-set, but it's doomed to fail (IMHO) because not enough will sell to attract gaming developers to produce titles for it.

After PalmOS6 comes out, the Palm vs PPC argument will come down to one question: Is software compatibility more important than reliability? (unless Palm totally screws up and PalmOS is even less reliable than PPC... but I doubt that) Palm had a software advantage for years, but as its platform fragments and PPC gains marketshare, PPC will gain the upper-hand with available software. By going with Win32 API, Microsoft made it easy to develop for PPC... but by using the Win32 API, Microsoft damned PPC as being inherently tempermental.

The argument may shift when PalmOS6 finally makes it into Palm Smartphones... at that point, *if* Palm still has enough marketshare, then Palm has a chance of surviving because of the fragmentation between PPC and MS' smartphones. But Palm doesn't have a sugar daddy while Microsoft can continue pouring money and resources into PPC. I've always argued against those who predicted Palm's demise as coming by 1998 (then it was 1999, then 2000, then 01, then 02, etc). But I think by 2005, Palm will be done for if they can't get their Smartphone program-together. For their sake, the Treo600 better sell well...

Timothy Rapson
12-04-2003, 01:39 AM
Three years ago, there were Handsprings, Palms, and Handeras (formerly TRG) They were as similar as todays PPCs, or moreso. About the time the Palm M125-130 came out each had a standard mono screen, expansion, and four buttons across the front.

On the Windows CE side various manufacturers had tried one style of hardware after another, from the Casio Zoomer to the HP Omni foldover.

About this time Palm made a deliberate decision that all future models would be different from the last. Microsoft decided just the opposite.

Well, there are still the standards--small (Palm V sized) and large (Palm III sized), but on the Palm OS side they told Toshiba to get lost because Toshiba showed them nothing new while Sony showed a ton of innovative prototypes. Microsoft must have seen some wild proposals too. MS told them to stick to the Palm III or V feature/form set, at least until they got a market share hold. It seems MS has that now, but MS has no marketing model that shows them a profit in PDAs. The whole point was to stop Palm. Well, the phone market is finaly killing Palm and may threaten MS. So, now MS is going after the phone market. All MS really cares about is killing or overcoming any product that anyone might use to keep them from being dependent on a Windows desktop.

So, here we are.

Cypher
12-04-2003, 01:48 AM
Multi-tasking: It is generally true that what Pocket PC OS uses multi-tasking for could be accomplished some other way. Multi-tasking is only truly necessary when you want two programs processing data simultaneously. Cutting and pasting between applications could be accomplished by a persistant clipboard, but it would only work around that one thing. Storing the "current state" of a program would work around some other things but not allow my e-book reader to repaginate in background while I'm reading or allow TextMaker to do spell checking in background while I'm typing. Rather than figuring out work-arounds for all the various things we do in Pocket PC OS by virtue of having true multi-tasking, Microsoft just gave us true multi-tasking.

I'd just as soon keep multi-tasking. I like the freedom of being able to have whichever programs I want all doing their things at the same time.

However, it's also true that, because of Microsoft's other decision not to make a true program close easily accessable, things can get a little slow. Most PPC manufacturers include some sort of task manager that works around this but each one works differently. I keep hoping that Microsoft will realize that we really do want to close our programs some times. It would be quite easy to use tap-and-hold on the (X) to pull up a list of the running programs and let you close one or all of them.

huangzhinong
12-04-2003, 01:50 AM
The argument may shift when PalmOS6 finally makes it into Palm Smartphones... at that point, *if* Palm still has enough marketshare, then Palm has a chance of surviving because of the fragmentation between PPC and MS' smartphones.

I don't agree here.
The main point for PPC 2003 release, which didn't show much improvement at all, is converging PPC and smartphone. MS is trying hard to using as many as possible same codes in PPC and smartphone. Finally(maybe just next release) MS will combine PPC and smartphone together. Developer only need write one application, OS will adjust the resolution and tweat it, just like in desktop system.

I still believe Palm OS has its own market even in the long future. Unless there is a miracle in Palm OS 6.0, Palm OS networking is too weak. PalmOne won't take any smartphone market shares in future, in other words, today's treo 600's market shares will be the highest point for Palm history.

oldan
12-04-2003, 04:15 AM
Oh jeeze...
this is a real interesting article. But I have to admit. I have a Dell Axim X5 and I ain't buying another d*mned handheld until something really really new is available for them.

I've got wireless, I get my e-mail, I can review and begin simple documents and spreadsheets, I can arrange pictures, I can listen to music with headphones and in my car with a cassette adapter.

I can plug in a SD memory card and leave it while plugging in a CF network card.

I just wish P.I.E. worked more like a real web browser.

The next thing I need is built-in 802.11g wireless but I can wait and wait and wait for that.

Why should I buy anything else? I sure don't want to go back to a Palm.

-- Oldan

Janak Parekh
12-04-2003, 05:53 AM
However, it's also true that, because of Microsoft's other decision not to make a true program close easily accessable, things can get a little slow.
Yup, and I think every editor on this site has not only lambasted this limitation, but uses a task manager to supplant this problem.

It would be quite easy to use tap-and-hold on the (X) to pull up a list of the running programs and let you close one or all of them.
Spb's Pocket Plus can do exactly this. :D It also lets you reprogram the X to be a close by default, and the tap-and-hold can be used to minimize instead.

--janak

Ed Hansberry
12-04-2003, 06:14 AM
However, it's also true that, because of Microsoft's other decision not to make a true program close easily accessable, things can get a little slow.
Yup, and I think every editor on this site has not only lambasted this limitation, but uses a task manager to supplant this problem.
Heh heh. That is an understatement. http://www.pocketpcthoughts.com/articles.php?action=expand,13460 :grinning devil:

Fishie
12-04-2003, 07:25 AM
I hate multitasking on a PDA.

OK, in a very few cases it makes sense - a MP3 player, or as someone mentioned, downloading mail. But otherwise it makes about as much sense as my PS2 multitasking. I only have one screen, I only have one task, and I want 100% performance out of the poor burdened hardware.
Or when I open an email to send someone some info, switch to CALC to quickly make a calculation for the email, switch to Pocket Informant to check my schedule on meeting this person about the issue, switch back to inbox, with the email still open an intact, and press send.

Or dozens and dozens of other scenarios. Try copying contact info from a PalmOS email to the address book then try doing it from the Pocket PC. The PPC will let you toggle back and forth between the message and contact form. PalmOS will close the Contact form each time you "switch" back. How productive is that?

Now, tell my why that requires MULTITASKING. As soon as you say "switch to" you mean to say "suspend". Sure, they could be a little more advanced about storing form persistence, but keeping everything running at the same time is a sloppy and stupid way to do it. It works on a desktop, not on that overburdened PDA.

:soapbox: :treadmill:

I guess I'll just fume until the next time someone posts a "Palm is only 160x160 black and white 2MB RAM!" post.

Realworld example.
At a hotspot I check my email and notice I have mail from a very close friend of mine and he needs some urgent info, thing is I dont have that info stored on my PPC.
I open MS messenger and ask someone I know to forward me the info he requested, I also see that he is online as well, tell him to be patient while I await the email, email arrives and I simply cut n paste the info he requested.
Not a single program closed, i could tell him what was going on while the email was being send and i was checking out some miscelanous webstuff.

Fishie
12-04-2003, 07:29 AM
Oops, nevermind my previous post, didnt read the stuff that came after it.

cherring
12-04-2003, 08:11 AM
Recently my boss went to europe and picked up a tungsten t3. He said the pocketpc based devices were more expensive. Personally, I think he just liked the way the control pad slides down to reveal more screen. To tell you the truth, I was also impressed. I looked at my casio E-200 and his t3 and thought, darn it, they're gaining on us.

So came the connecting to the outside world. We tried to connect it to the internet via the cradle, it had that option. We just couldn't. Searching palm(one)'s site revealed we neaded an ethernet cradle. At least that's what I thought it said, there's no real help on their site for anything. So we decided it's got bluetooth, we're going to connect it up to his nokia 6310i. It should be a synch to use GPRS via bluetooth. The bluetooth part worked ok. We got the t3 to dial a number on the phone. Now we needed to dial GPRS, it needed an "extra string" option which the palm did not have. So he bought a palm modem. He connected using a land line. Great, so now he took it with him to vancouver on a trip. When he got there he tried to read his notes E-mail via the web interface. Guess what, it couldn't handle the web pages, so now he's got a t3 with a palm modem, no way to connect to the office, so it may as well be a brick he's carrying with him. I think the next device he buys will be a pocketpc.

yslee
12-04-2003, 09:04 AM
Yeah, but come one. In 2000, the most advanced PalmOS units had 8MB of RAM, few storage cards, zippy 25MHz processors, mostly greyscale screens, etc. It would be like me pointing to a wooden go-kart in 2000 and a new car today and saying "Wow - look how far the Hansberry car company has gone in just 3 years." You have to take into account the 3 year old unit was from the stone ages.

But the present day units are as good or even better than PPC in some areas. It shows that Palm is working hard to stay in the race, but MS.. well.. =S

Considering what could have been easily, given advancements by the competition, you'd think that MS is moving at a real snail's pace. Simple things like upgrading the Pocket apps to increasing memory, resolution specs and so on would have been possible. Especially upgrading the Pocket apps.

Add to the fact that the premise of the PocketPC was a PC in your Pocket, it certainly hasn't gone very near towards achieving that goal for me in the past three years.

bjchantry
12-04-2003, 09:59 AM
So came the connecting to the outside world. We tried to connect it to the internet via the cradle, it had that option. We just couldn't. Searching palm(one)'s site revealed we neaded an ethernet cradle. At least that's what I thought it said, there's no real help on their site for anything. So we decided it's got bluetooth, we're going to connect it up to his nokia 6310i. It should be a synch to use GPRS via bluetooth. The bluetooth part worked ok. We got the t3 to dial a number on the phone. Now we needed to dial GPRS, it needed an "extra string" option which the palm did not have. So he bought a palm modem. He connected using a land line. Great, so now he took it with him to vancouver on a trip. When he got there he tried to read his notes E-mail via the web interface. Guess what, it couldn't handle the web pages, so now he's got a t3 with a palm modem, no way to connect to the office, so it may as well be a brick he's carrying with him. I think the next device he buys will be a pocketpc.

I am confused about your part regarding connecting to the GPRS, who is your service with? I have connected to both Vodacom and MTN through the original Tungsten T no problem. ? What string were you trying to enter? I am just about fed up with my XDA, slow to open the most basic functions. I compared opening WorldMate on my XDA and on my wife's old Palm IIIC, same program in theory, I opened, closed and reopend it on the Palm before it was open on the XDA, and that was right after a soft reset!! Pocket Informant is great, but 5 to 7 seconds to see your calendar from a closed application is terrible. Thinking about the Tungsten T3, interested in you GPRS nightmare.

And as for standard features, Ed forget to mention that on the XDA the voice recorder button is removed so that feature is not guaranteed with the Windows logo. It's there, but takes to long to launch with software taps and since we only have two app assignable buttons to start with, not going to waste it on the Voice recorder.

cherring
12-04-2003, 10:43 AM
Refering to your point about the GPRS, the connection string is the same for both of them, but I think the problem was that the instructions were for a pocketpc. There is a section for "Extra dialling string" where you put the "=contcgd=1,"ip","internet" or something. I don't know where to put that. If you do, let me know.

teq
12-04-2003, 11:26 AM
My favorite example: dialogue boxes with only "yes" and "no" buttons - argh! (e.g. "Open this occurence? (Tap No to open the entire series.) Tap 'X' to cancel.") Unbelievable!
So, when opening a recurring appointment, how does the Palm GUI handle asking you if you want to open:
• The recurring appointment and modify everything
• This instance and modify it to create a one time exception to the recurrence
• Never mind. I didn't mean to tap it.
Ed,

since I can't post screen shots (or can I?) and my Tungsten T is on the bottom of a drawer (as I'm perfectly happy with my 2215), I'll try to describe it how the Palm's GUI handles this situation.

On the palm, the buttons in a dialogue box are not always labeled "yes" or "no" and you're not restricted to two buttons. So in the above situation the dialogue on the Palm looks like this (quoting from memory because, see above): "Do you want to change the series or the instance?" plus three buttons labeled "series", "instance", "cancel".

Now, IMHO, that's how an intuitive GUI should work... :D

Cheers,
teq

bjchantry
12-04-2003, 12:36 PM
cherring, it has been a while since I did it for someone but here is a link that might help.

http://205.141.210.179/SRVS/CGI-BIN/WEBCGI.EXE/,/?St=78,E=0000000000366162998,K=9822,Sxi=0,Case=obj(4479)

Otherwise contact Palm South Africa, I know I shouldn't use the P word here, but helping each other out is what it is all about isn't it?

I must say this part was a piece of cake on my XDA, about three screens of info and bingo it works, every time.

cherring
12-04-2003, 12:45 PM
Otherwise contact Palm South Africa, I know I shouldn't use the P word here, but helping each other out is what it is all about isn't it?

I must say this part was a piece of cake on my XDA, about three screens of info and bingo it works, every time.

Thanks for this. I used my casio to check the connectivity and it worked. I had been using GPRS via IR on mine ever since MTN offered the service as a test. It was really easy to connect the pocket pc, but that's what I'm talking about. Technically the palm has the ability to do all these things, but due to lack of expertise (mine) or support for 3rd party hardware (sdio wifi card), things effectively don't work out the way you expect. I had connected up a palm 505 and nokia 6310i, but for the life of me I couldn't get the t3 to do the same.

SandersP
12-04-2003, 01:15 PM
But the present day units are as good or even better than PPC in some areas. It shows that Palm is working hard to stay in the race, but MS.. well.. =S

Palm is working hard? their basic handheld is now the same as what PPC achieved 2 years ago! nothing more save the HVGA screen from Sony. And shall we even talk about T|E? that thing can do less than a h3600, let alone h1910 or h1945.

They are just barely in the race. And since now Sony has stop using Xscale, they won't have anybody to copy from.


Considering what could have been easily, given advancements by the competition, you'd think that MS is moving at a real snail's pace. Simple things like upgrading the Pocket apps to increasing memory, resolution specs and so on would have been possible. Especially upgrading the Pocket apps.

most of recent PPC new features are internal, new kernel, dual wireless, better wireless handling. And what do we have with Palm? no WiFi option? different browser for each brand and models? The darned thing doesn't even have working all inone media player.
[/quote]
Add to the fact that the premise of the PocketPC was a PC in your Pocket, it certainly hasn't gone very near towards achieving that goal for me in the past three years.[/quote]

and what goal would that be? sliding D-pad with less than 3hrs battery? lol.
the top of the line PPC is e800, h4155, andXDAII. It sure is a heck a lot more computer than T|T3. T\3 can't even open 2MB spreadsheet without croaking.

some PC there.

Ed Hansberry
12-04-2003, 01:28 PM
And as for standard features, Ed forget to mention that on the XDA the voice recorder button is removed so that feature is not guaranteed with the Windows logo.
But the XDA has the feature. The 2215 doesn't have a dedicated recorder button either but the feature is there. :confused totally: The XDA has two buttons and I don't recall what they are, but say they are Calendar and Contacts. Does that mean that because almost all of the other Pocket PCs also have an Email button that the XDA doesn't have email because there is no button for it? :idontthinkso:

Jimmy Dodd
12-04-2003, 02:55 PM
---snip---

On the palm, the buttons in a dialogue box are not always labeled "yes" or "no" and you're not restricted to two buttons. So in the above situation the dialogue on the Palm looks like this (quoting from memory because, see above): "Do you want to change the series or the instance?" plus three buttons labeled "series", "instance", "cancel".


There's nothing in the CE OS restricting what kind of buttons or how many of them that you can put in a dialog box. On the other hand, a message box does have limitations but should only be used when the available options make sense. Unfortunately, in this case (and in others) the application developers (not the OS developers) dropped the ball (or just got lazy) and didn't spend the extra fifteen minutes developing a custom dialog box. You'd think that by now they would have fixed it. :roll:

yslee
12-04-2003, 09:05 PM
Palm is working hard? their basic handheld is now the same as what PPC achieved 2 years ago! nothing more save the HVGA screen from Sony. And shall we even talk about T|E? that thing can do less than a h3600, let alone h1910 or h1945.


You're right on your first point, but I disagree on the second. T|E might be inferior to the iPAQs CPU wise, but it can do quite a few things except for wifi and a few other networking related activities. I certainly can play games, load spreadsheets, type a document, schedule appointments, etc.


most of recent PPC new features are internal, new kernel, dual wireless, better wireless handling. And what do we have with Palm? no WiFi option? different browser for each brand and models? The darned thing doesn't even have working all inone media player.


I didn't find the 3800, 3900, and then the 5400 series to offer any real improvements for me to upgrade, save for the nice transflective screens, and that's not enough for me to upgrade. Granted this is very much my personal opinion, but the enhancements don't add anything to what I feel are the more annoying points of the PPC.


and what goal would that be? sliding D-pad with less than 3hrs battery? lol.
the top of the line PPC is e800, h4155, andXDAII. It sure is a heck a lot more computer than T|T3. T\3 can't even open 2MB spreadsheet without croaking.

some PC there.

I'd appreciate if you don't twist my argument around. I said the premise of the PPC was a PC in your pocket, and that it'd be nice if MS made greater strides towards it (better leaner OS, better software, better screens, etc). It has absolutely nothing to do with making PPCs like Palm.

SandersP
12-05-2003, 02:29 AM
You're right on your first point, but I disagree on the second. T|E might be inferior to the iPAQs CPU wise, but it can do quite a few things except for wifi and a few other networking related activities. I certainly can play games, load spreadsheets, type a document, schedule appointments, etc.
mic, SDIO/peripherals capability, VG, file system, internal memory, etc...


I didn't find the 3800, 3900, and then the 5400 series to offer any real improvements for me to upgrade, save for the nice transflective screens, and that's not enough for me to upgrade. Granted this is very much my personal opinion, but the enhancements don't add anything to what I feel are the more annoying points of the PPC.
but if you look at h1940, h2210 and h4155... they certainly make some progress putting more features into smaller package.

sarvinc
12-05-2003, 10:26 PM
I'm not sure I understand the argument here. The argument that some one can walk in and out of a store with a purchase in minutes is a flawed argument. I would never purchase a car, book, PDA... well, come to think of it any consumer product like this. I'm glad you're happy Microsoft forces makers to adhere to standards, but I don't want or need a voice recorder, camera, CF slot, or hand writing capability. Try doing this; walk into a store and ask to see the Pocket PC with buttons and a joypad set up like a game controller. Pocket PCs are like Honda Accords; very nice, but what happens when you want to buy a truck?

RobertCF
12-06-2003, 02:46 AM
Neither Palms nor PocketPCs were designed nor marketed as gaming devices. It just so happens that they CAN do that function. And, truth be known, the greatest advances in desktop computers came not from CAD, not from office apps, not from anything else as much they came from games. Which is why you have seen the huge explosion of games coming out for the PocketPCs. Just as it took a while for gaming to take over as the driving force for faster, bigger, larger capacity desktops, I'm sure that will eventually be a component of more frequent advances in PocketPCs. But for now, they are fulfilling the function that they were originally designed to do. Personal Digital Assistant. This means they can track appointments, contacts, databases and some office applications. It so happens that PocketPCs happen to be more focused on actually BEING a POCKET PC.

Also, just as you said you have no use for a CF slot, voice recorder, or handwriting capability, those are three items I find most crucial, since I use them all. In contrast, I find the whole thumb board thing the most stupid idea of all time. I can use the transcriber MUCH MUCH faster than any chicklet thumb board. And if I REALLY want to input quickly, I use a foldup REAL keyboard. The voice recording capability, though very useful for quick notes that I can't conveniently write into the device (someone giving me a phone number or address, for instance), will become even more useful when consistent voice recognition gets going---just talk to the PDA and it writes the note for you. But it sounds more to me like you'd be just fine with a sticky note and pencil. And that's perfectly fine, certainly.
But I like the size and form of PDAs as they are. I think the suggestion about 2" screens is ridiculous--you'd need a magnifying glass to use it--and I never ever understood the clamour for a flip cover on a PDA. It just gets in the way and will be yet another piece of flimsy plastic to get caught on something and break. Get a nice, attractive leather case and you'll HAVE your flip cover.

sarvinc
12-06-2003, 09:47 PM
I suppose you're referring to the first generation of Treos made by Handspring, though I don't know why. I didn't mention the Zodiac because I thought you or anyone else on this board may want one. I'm sure you own and love Pocket PCs, and I make no claim that one is better than the other. However, the original argument was that with the PPC Ideology, you could more easily walk into a store and purchase a device based on a set of needs. This argument only takes into account those who walk into a store and make a purchase on the spot. This argument doesn't take into account the user who researches before making a purchase and the user whose needs aren't met by a voice recorder/ CF slot. What if a person wants a gaming device with a built in PIM?

yslee
12-06-2003, 11:09 PM
mic, SDIO/peripherals capability, VG, file system, internal memory, etc...


Well, none of these really stop the device from doing similar things as an iPAQ, yea? Except for the lack of mic, that is. And one's personal preferences. I personally dislike the Palm file system, but that's another rant.

And this is a cheaper device we're talking about, I'd say it does pretty good!


but if you look at h1940, h2210 and h4155... they certainly make some progress putting more features into smaller package.

Beyond wireless and size, the advancements do seem minor. Hence my gripe. I'm sure bigger screens, faster processors, better SOFTWARE etc wouldn't have been THAT hard.

Ed Hansberry
12-06-2003, 11:31 PM
I messed with a Tungsten T3 today. Yeah, the sliding screen is cool, but so little of the built in software takes advantage of it. Instead of showing you more on your Calendar, or more Contact info, you just get the keyboard. Big deal. And the basic apps still don't do any more at 320X320 than they did at 160X160 except look less pixelated.

I guess PalmOne is really letting third parties take advantage of this stuff, because they aren't doing it themselves. I personally prefer the 2215's hardware which includes SDIO and CF slots.

Deslock
12-08-2003, 08:30 PM
I messed with a Tungsten T3 today. Yeah, the sliding screen is cool, but so little of the built in software takes advantage of it. Instead of showing you more on your Calendar, or more Contact info, you just get the keyboard. Big deal.


http://www.palminfocenter.com/images/tt3/ss/t3_1.gif

http://www.palminfocenter.com/images/tt3/ss/t3_2.gif

http://www.palminfocenter.com/images/tt3/ss/t3_3.gif

http://www.palminfocenter.com/images/tt3/ss/t3_4.gif

http://www.palminfocenter.com/images/tt3/ss/t3_9.gif

http://www.palminfocenter.com/images/tt3/ss/t3_20.gif

Ed Hansberry
12-08-2003, 11:25 PM
Thanks for the images Deslock. Neither I nor the PDA guy at Compusa could turn it off. We must not be zen. :wink:

Deslock
12-09-2003, 02:13 AM
Thanks for the images Deslock. Neither I nor the PDA guy at Compusa could turn it off. We must not be zen. :wink:
You can't be serious...

The menu footer is always visible when the T3 is in either the open or closed postion (except when viewing images full-screen and in some games). The above screenshots didn't include it because they only show 448x320 of the screen. Here it is:
http://www.the-gadgeteer.com/images2/t3-23.jpg

The icon on the right toggles the silkscreen (seems pretty obvious to me from the arrow). The icon next to that toggles orientation (again, the icon's image makes it pretty obvious). The next icon (with the squiggles) toggles on-screen input. Then there's (continuing right to left) bluetooth, alerts, time, menu, find, and home.

The T1/T2 slider implementation was pretty crappy because you had no icons in the closed position... but the T3 is very well thought out. You have access to all those commands all the time allowing you to instantly toggle not only input, but orientation and screen size.

ScottG
12-09-2003, 02:19 AM
Not to flog a dead horse, but since I'm trying to decide whether to replace my ailing Jornada 568 with a Treo 600 or some version of PPCPE, let me see if I understand the Palm's (lack of) multitasking:

Before my Jornada went kaput, when I was lifting weights I could run StopTime to time my rest intervals while simultaneously listening to MP3s on Windows Media Player and switching to Excel to record my lifts, and StopTime would keep on chugging. Do I have it right that doing this on a Palm would not work?

Thanks,

ScottG

Deslock
12-09-2003, 04:49 AM
I could run StopTime to time my rest intervals while simultaneously listening to MP3s on Windows Media Player and switching to Excel to record my lifts, and StopTime would keep on chugging. Do I have it right that doing this on a Palm would not work?
Nope. While Palm's multitasking is limited, it can do all that simultaneously.

Ed Hansberry
12-09-2003, 05:13 AM
Thanks for the images Deslock. Neither I nor the PDA guy at Compusa could turn it off. We must not be zen. :wink:
You can't be serious...

The menu footer is always visible when the T3 is in either the open or closed postion (except when viewing images full-screen and in some games). The above screenshots didn't include it because they only show 448x320 of the screen. Here it is:
http://www.the-gadgeteer.com/images2/t3-23.jpg

The icon on the right toggles the silkscreen (seems pretty obvious to me from the arrow). The icon next to that toggles orientation (again, the icon's image makes it pretty obvious).
The one that looks like an inbox? And why again is the keyboard open by default? It doesn't open/close automatically as I enter/leave text areas? You have to manually do that every time?

Zensbikeshop
12-09-2003, 11:36 AM
Thanks for the images Deslock. Neither I nor the PDA guy at Compusa could turn it off. We must not be zen. :wink:
You can't be serious...

The menu footer is always visible when the T3 is in either the open or closed postion (except when viewing images full-screen and in some games). The above screenshots didn't include it because they only show 448x320 of the screen. Here it is:
http://www.the-gadgeteer.com/images2/t3-23.jpg

The icon on the right toggles the silkscreen (seems pretty obvious to me from the arrow). The icon next to that toggles orientation (again, the icon's image makes it pretty obvious).
The one that looks like an inbox? And why again is the keyboard open by default? It doesn't open/close automatically as I enter/leave text areas? You have to manually do that every time?

Isn't perception fascinating? You think it looks like an inbox and I think it looks like the toggle for the virtual graffiti area.

On the subject of which. The VG area does appear when needed in some apps but in most it is controlled by the user. I have to say that I have found this less annoying than I used to on my iPAQs when the text input area always seemed to be opening when I didn't want it!

Ed Hansberry
12-09-2003, 02:00 PM
On the subject of which. The VG area does appear when needed in some apps but in most it is controlled by the user. I have to say that I have found this less annoying than I used to on my iPAQs when the text input area always seemed to be opening when I didn't want it!
With the exception of Pocket Excel, I've sound the SIP in Pocket PC to work very well. In Excel, you are on manual, which drives me nuts. In all other apps though, including third party ones, it pops up when I am in a text field and goes away when I am not. Keeps screen taps and stylus movement down.

tsb_hcy
12-09-2003, 02:54 PM
Ouch, still no wi-fi for most Palm devices. I don't see how anyone can use a PDA without wi-fi in this day and age. As Mr. T would say, pity the fools who bought a Zodiac 1/2.

An interesting note is that a thumboard accessory for the e805 will be released on 12/15 along with the serial connection cable, USB charge 'n sync cable, extended battery, USB host cable, and the presentation pack. If the e805 had a PC card adapter pack it would be the undisputable king of having everything. Nothing comes close to it now.

Palm is going to hit rock bottom if manufacturers don't start including wi-fi in almost every new model. I hope they get back on track, we need all the competition we can get to improve the best platform, PPC. ;)

Long live the new king, the e805.

yslee
12-09-2003, 06:10 PM
Isn't perception fascinating?

You mean bias, hehe.

On that track, why is 802.11b/g absolutely essential? Where I am, you pay through the nose for the few wireless hotspots (and with more than one service provider, you're gonna bleed pretty fast), and not everyone's workplace has 802.11b/g. Just because you need or like it doesn't mean everyone needs it.

Deslock
12-09-2003, 06:58 PM
Ed, so you really couldn't figure out how to drop the silk-screen even though the menu with the menu footer there? Frankly, I'm shocked. Every person (both Palm and PPC users) I've shown the T3 had no problem figuring it out... even computer-illiterates got it with only one simple instruction from me: "Click on the screen with the stylus to do stuff."

Ouch, still no wi-fi for most Palm devices. I don't see how anyone can use a PDA without wi-fi in this day and age.
The primary functions of a PDA to most people are calendar, address book, and todo list. Spreadsheets, word processing, audio playback, audio recording, email, web browsing, databases, games, video, image viewing/editing, and wireless connectivity are all useful for many of us, but they are seconday for the majority of PDA users. Hell, I have 802.11b both at home and at work and I'm in no hurry to have it on my handheld computer. When I want view webpages, my laptop provides a much better experience than my T3 (or my old HP2210). I could see using IM on my handheld, but between my cellphone and laptop, I'm connected to the outside world enough as it is.

Ed Hansberry
12-09-2003, 07:18 PM
Ed, so you really couldn't figure out how to drop the silk-screen even though the menu with the menu footer there? Frankly, I'm shocked. Every person (both Palm and PPC users) I've shown the T3 had no problem figuring it out... even computer-illiterates got it with only one simple instruction from me: "Click on the screen with the stylus to do stuff."
I've received your message loud and clear the last 10 posts of yours Deslock. I am a moron. Move along. :roll:

conflagrare
12-19-2003, 01:12 AM
In contrast, I find the whole thumb board thing the most stupid idea of all time. I can use the transcriber MUCH MUCH faster than any chicklet thumb board.

I hereby challenge you, or anyone, to walk down a parking lot with a heavy suitcase in one hand while writing a reminder for yourself on the handheld with the other.

This is only possible with a thumbboard.

How fast can you transcribe? how many wpm? Can you break 84wpm?

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