Verizon Palm Pre | All about the Palm Pre and Palm Pixi on Verizon



Round Table: Six months with the Palm Pre and webOS

Checkout Pre Central round table about the Palm Pre and the webOS; here is a highlight:
What was the most important event for Palm in the last six months, and what will be the most important in the next six months?

Craig: There has been no single big event from Palm since the the Pre was introduced but there are dozens from the user community. In July, WebOS Quick Install and fileCoaster threw open the door to homebrew apps like Solitaire and Checkers but none rocked like Music Player (Remix). Then came Preware and our world exploded. In September themes and patches came to the masess and suddenly our Pre phones could do almost anything. Oh, and somewhere along the way Palm released some updates and the Pixi.

Hopefully the biggest events ahead for Palm will be incorporating user patches and introducing the Pre 2. Imagine if Palm incorporated key user patches in one area each month: Messaging, Email, Phone, App Launcher, Browser, and Top Bar. Add in the Music Player (Remix) and the Pre and Pixi would suddenly have world-class apps, users would be a buzz, and the pundits would be blown away. Users could provide an endless source of patches. But if fragile Palm egos prevail, the Pre 2 will be irrelavent.

Derek: More important than the Pre launch in the long term will be the Pixi. Despite what Palm keeps saying, the Pre is a smartphone for smartphone geeks. The Pixi, however, has much more mass-market appeal, ala the Centro. In the 18 months after Palm launched the Centro they sold more than three million units, which is an awful lot for Palm. The hope, and expectation, is that the Pixi will replicate that success. Like the Centro, it’s the smallest smartphone on the market. Like the Centro, it’s a scaled down version of its big brother, the Pre. Like the Centro, it’s a new smartphone at a very attractive price-point: $100. And like the Centro, it’s an approachable cute phone. Assuming that Sprint’s exclusivity on the Pixi isn’t too long (they don’t seem to be making a big marketing push behind it), the Pixi’s eventual landing on multiple carriers will make it a serious contender in the mass-appeal smartphone market.

While the Pixi’s launch may be the most important of the last six months, the next six months will be all about webOS and the successor to the Pre. While I have absolutely no evidence apart from industry trends to back up this assertion, I believe that summer 2010 will bring both the Pre II and webOS 2.0. Assuming that the Pixi performs as well as we expect, Palm will be well positioned for an iPhone-style global launch of the Pre II. What makes the hypothetical Pre II important is that it will demonstrate whether or not Palm has learned lessons on the hardware front. Software is easy enough to correct, but once the physical phone is out there, there’s nothing that can be done to correct design deficiencies. The Pixi has shown that Palm does indeed know how to design a solid phone, but it remains to be seen whether that will be a fluke or the start of a trend.

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