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Palm T|X and Z22 Reviewed

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 8 years ago | from the more-hardware-to-lose dept.

Handhelds 155

robf writes "The eagerly awaited Palm T|X and Z22 have been officially announced. Palminfocenter has reviews posted for both the Palm T|X and the Palm Z22." From the article: "The T|X and Z22 are the first new models to return to the Palm name, after the company reacquired the rights to the Palm name. Palm has decided to drop the Tungsten sub brand, in order to highlight the strong Palm name brand."

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Real men... (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13774592)

...use a notepad and pencil.

Real wimps use paper and pencil (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13774932)

What's wrong with your memory then?

Re:Real men... (1)

doublem (118724) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776000)

And have better data integrity as a result.

Of course copying your address book is a bit of a pain...

At last... (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774594)

...a replacement for my M505. Wifi, web browsing and email in my pocket AND all my old software will work. It's about bloody time is all I have to say.

Too bad it doesn't have a camera, though. :-(

Camera functionality is a problem for some... (2, Insightful)

kc01 (772943) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774715)

If you ever have the need to go into any kind of secure facility, you'll want a pilot (and phone) without a built-in camera. It'd be a drag to go in for a meeting only to have them require you leave your tools in your car.

Re:Camera functionality is a problem for some... (1)

Helmholtz Coil (581131) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775021)

Ditto for WiFi and Bluetooth-I know of at least one BlackBerry user in the Army that had to move heaven and earth to get his inside.

Usually, as long as you can show all that functionality you paid for can be disabled, they'll let you in...which then brings up the whole "Why bother?" question for me. :)

Re:At last... (2, Interesting)

ReverendLoki (663861) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774719)

A camera would make a nice option, preferably as a removable attachment, but there are just way too many places that are now screening for cameras on cell phones and other handheld devices for it to be a viable standard. It already sucks enough right now that I must hand over my cell phone to security when entering into certain federal and corporate buildings, but when it comes down to it, I'd rather not have to leave behind a Palm that I have that much of a money investment in, not to mention the amount of personal info that might be on one.

A camera on a handheld is handy to have, and I get enough use out of it on my phone to lift it just out of "toy feature" status, but I still don't see it's use as an integrated part of a professional tool like this.

Re:At last... (4, Informative)

Mignon (34109) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774792)

Too bad it doesn't have a camera, though.

You might like the Sony TJ-37: PalmOS, WiFi, and Camera. Here's [mobiletechreview.com] a review.

I'm still leaning towards the Tungsten C for the built-in keyboard but a half-vga screen is kind of tempting too.

Re:At last... (1)

smoker2 (750216) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775149)

I have a tungsten c, and unless they have revised the model, its crap.
WiFi settings are a real PITA and if you try to have more than 1 entry in the pre-configured access points, then it ends up not connecting to any of them. To edit an access point is impossible, you have to delete all the entries and start from scratch. At one point I had to run the system restore to get WiFi working again !
I had the screen go on mine after about 3 months which they fixed, but you can't use a decent wireless SD card (11g) because it has "built in" wireless (802.11b). Its a shame coz it looked good from the spec, but after owning it, all I can say is don't bother. The Tungsten E/ E2 [palm.com] seems like the one, with many more accessories available for it.
Less is more as they say ...

Re:At last... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13776210)

I have a Palm Tungsten C, and I love it... except for a couple of things.

1) It only has a mono headphone jack. Not a huge deal, considering that music isn't why I bought it.
2) You can't add Bluetooth to it -- ever (apparently). Even though there are SDIO cards that will fit it, Palm has not (and will not) release the drivers for OS5. OS4 models work just fine, but not OS5. Further, Palm won't release the specs to 3rd party companies, meaning that nobody can release a bluetooth driver.

I've called and written to Palm several times, and have been totally frustrated. The bottom line is... They don't really care. Unfortunately, it's one of the nicest PDAs I've ever seen, but I will never buy a Palm device again.

Re:At last... (2, Informative)

CreatureComfort (741652) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775243)


No camera, but it does have an SD slot. So check out this [pretec.com] .

Good tip, thank you. (1)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776574)

I placed my order for the T|X this afternoon, hopefully I'll have it Friday.

The specs say the T|X runs Palm OS 5.4, and the camera says it's good for OS 5, without specifying a subrevision, so one would think it'd work ok. $80.00 doesn't seem out of line, either, though the reviews on Amazon are a bit mixed.

I also found this Veo camera [amazon.com] , which is 640 x 680 instead of 1.3 MP, and is about 25% less expensive.

Re:At last... (1)

andreyw (798182) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776735)

Too bad it still runs Garnet. These are about as useful as running Windows 3.1 or a 3.2Ghz P4. Sure it's fast, but, ummm... right.

What the hell happened to OS6, PalmOne? OS6 has supposedly been out already for a year and yet we still get Garnet-based devices. What good does "WiFi" do if the `OS' still sucks? I for one am not looking forward to the inability to multitask, "ARMlets" that couple with emulated 68k code, PDBs, lack of a real filesystem, the ability of a single app to bring the whole device to its knees etc.

Someone help... need question answered. (3, Interesting)

yagu (721525) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774603)

As a long time user and fan of Palm, (I kind of consider them the tivo of the hand held industry -- maybe not the very first there, but one of the ones that got a lot of things right ergonomically before they got steamrolled by the industry and their own inertia), the time and technology seems about right for me.

Looking at the features list it seems to fulfill much of what I've waited for (good memory, expandable vi SD, nice screen, improved and enhanced original apps).

But a question for any who really know: Will the user be able to use this wireless capability to move pictures and mp3s to the device? That would just about lock it for me, but it's not clear from the feature list and description that that is doable.

Also, are there any users out there who would vouch for today's screen quality? I would be upgrading from the Palm m5xx which has a color screen, but that screen is of less than great quality and is quite anemic. I've seen other newer devices with screens that scream -- is Palm doing the same?

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (5, Informative)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774660)

I know you can use Bluetooth to transfer photos between Zire 72s...I don't know about mainstreem wifi, though. I'd imagine that working with MP3s would depend on the application you used to manage them.

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

m50d (797211) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776644)

I know you can use Bluetooth to transfer photos between Zire 72s...I don't know about mainstreem wifi, though. I'd imagine that working with MP3s would depend on the application you used to manage them.

SMB and UPNP make a horrible lowest common denominator that would nevertheless work with just about everything.

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

tpgp (48001) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774735)

good memory, expandable viSD


You mean it comes with vim [vim.org] included?

Great!

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (3, Insightful)

adrianmonk (890071) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774776)

Also, are there any users out there who would vouch for today's screen quality? I would be upgrading from the Palm m5xx which has a color screen, but that screen is of less than great quality and is quite anemic. I've seen other newer devices with screens that scream -- is Palm doing the same?

The visual quality of the screen should be way better than your m505 or m515. Both the m505 and m515 have 160x160 displays, and the T|X is supposed to be 320x480. Also, the contrast and general readability will be much better.

As for screaming, I'm not sure what you mean by that. If you mean making a whining noise, it is the case that some Palm devices do have screens that make a whining noise. How loud it is seems to vary from one individual unit to another. It also varies from one model to another. I've heard lots of reports that the Zire 72 does have issues with screen noise. I haven't, however, heard any reports about the same problem with the Tungsten|T5, which is the model that's most similar to the T|X.

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

barc0001 (173002) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775053)

I have experienced the whine sound on a couple of Palm devices I've had, and it's not audible unless you hold your ear within a foot or so of the screen surface. That said, I've got a T5, which as the poster above said is the display most similar to the new T|X, and it's completely silent. Just checked. ;)

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

Seumas (6865) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774828)

I've thought about getting a handheld for the last couple years, but since I have a laptop, it would be sort of redundant. The only time I'd need a handheld is when I'm not at the office, at home or traveling for work. And really, do I need a computer just to go to the theater or out to dinner? Not really.

But if I didn't have and need a laptop, I might consider it. Especially now that these little devices are advancing to the point wher eyou can actually do something with them besides keep addresses and play tetris.

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

Angostura (703910) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775268)

I think you've pretty much missed the point of PDAs:

And really, do I need a computer just to go to the theater or out to dinner? Not really.

Let's see, you're out at dinner and one of your friends says "hey let's go to theatre, do have any free evenings the week after next and do you have Jenny's phone number". You going consult your laptop? Nope.

My palm isn't meant to replace a laptop. (2, Informative)

fyngyrz (762201) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776905)

A laptop is pretty bulky, even a light one, so inevitably, I don't have one with me all the time. I have both a Mac Powerbook and a Windows XP laptop, the Mac is a lot more pleasant to use but isn't any more convenient.

But... my Palm (the M505, soon to be the T|X) is always with me. On my Palm, I have, and use:

  • An app named "Silver" that lets you customize the look and feel of the 505
  • An address book (this is stock software, but very useful)
  • Note taking software, both handwritten and text -- again, stock and mega-useful
  • Chinese character flashcard software (both the traditional and the icky modern characters)
  • A comprehensive guitar chord reference
  • Photo display software (and lots of photos)
  • An "ear trainer" which teaches one to precisely recognize musical notes
  • An RPN calculator (I'm so into RPN I can hardly use an algebraic calculator these days)
  • A decent chess game and some other "arcade" type games
  • A very nice list management program "ListPro" upon which I keep:
    • An encrypted list of passwords and ids
    • A list of music I hear that interests me (and probably will buy eventually)
    • A couple of outlines for books I am writing
    • Notes for a house I am designing
    • A complete list of 31 martial arts forms move by move

There are tons of other apps for the Palm, these are just the ones that I've found (so far) that are particularly useful to me. YMWDV.

What this all boils down to is that I am never without something interesting to do, a place to make, keep and use notes and lists, and share photos and ideas.

The T|X will add web browsing and email, a lot more memory, the ability to play back music and audiobooks, and basically the form factor won't change at all. The T|X is just about the size of my current M505.

I can turn on my Palm anywhere without aggravating anyone or looking for some desk space — in a meeting or a movie theatre, at my desk, in a car, on a train, bus or plane, in a restaurant, store or at a customer's job site (we do some consulting and fast note taking capability is always useful in that venue.)

Palm just about as fast as I can write "normal" text on paper. It's really a very good system, and I'm eager to see what the T|X's Graffiti II will be like.

Palms really aren't laptops, and vice-versa. I'd truly hate to be without a Palm or Palm-like device. I use it every day. I use a laptop very seldom by comparison. Mostly on trips when I'm going to be out of town for more than a day or two — at that point, things I need to do require a full blown computer. But I still take the Palm everywhere, and usually leave the laptop in the hotel room or the car. :-)

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

kuzb (724081) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775012)

I can only speak from limited experience, but I have used an m400, a T5 and the Lifedrive, and I've found the screen to be quite nice on the T5 and Lifedrive (which should almost be seen as the same thing, aside from storage capacity). Like most LCD devices, it does suffer quite a lot in direct sunlight. So if you're looking for something that is usable at the beach, this one is probably not for you.

Re:Someone help... need question answered. (1)

stickyc (38756) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775330)

But a question for any who really know: Will the user be able to use this wireless capability to move pictures and mp3s to the device? That would just about lock it for me, but it's not clear from the feature list and description that that is doable.

Historically, Palm devices have supported HotSyncing wirelessly - it's not easy to set up, but it can be done. Media can be loaded onto the device using the Palm Installation Application and HotSync. So, if you can HotSync wirelessly, you can load media wirelessly. I see no reason why newer devices wouldn't support this functionality.

For what it's worth, the RSS reader QuickNews [standalone.com] supports downloading attachments directly to the SD card. I've used it to download podcasts on my Treo, but the download rates aren't fast enough to make this a particularly viable option.

Backlit? (2, Interesting)

Evangelion (2145) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774610)


Is the Z22 backlit? The blurb doesn't say.

I would have bought a Zire 21 ages ago for a cheap e-book reader, had it been backlit.

I guess my old Handspring Visor Deluxe will still be in use if it's not.

Re:Backlit? (1)

halffull (720484) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774829)

Yes it is - the Z22's screen is similar to the Zire 31's, which I can say from personal experience is quite nice, even though not hi-res like the higher level Palms. And for the record, I'm a bit miffed about this as I bought a Zire 31 not two weeks ago, and I'd switch for a Z22 in a heartbeat. The only downside to the Z22, in comparison to the Zire 31, is the lack of an SD slot for expansion (which means no MP3s for you silly people buying a PDA for music). I personally wouldn't use more than the 20+ megs available in the Z22 but that's a personal choice.

Re:Backlit? (1)

computechnica (171054) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776260)

With the Zire 31s Headphone jack and SD card slot (1 Gig card works) you can listen to MP3s and Watch Divx Avi's and MPEG-1 videos. I use the Free Core media player (TCPMP) to watch most video formats including the H.263 MOVs my Kodak camera shoots.

The best Free Video Encoder for PDAs is the PocketDivXEncoder. It can scale a movie down to 90megs (160x84 30fps DivX w/ Mono MP3 sound). Cheaper than I-POD video. I also have my ATI All in Wonder record shows direct to DivX.
IF you want good quality sound and video Go with a Tapwave Zodiac, they are avalable on E-bay for less then $200.

Re:Backlit? (1)

Darius Jedburgh (920018) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775188)

I use my Palm only as an ereader but I consider an SD card slot essential (which this Zire doesn't have). Although you might only have a couple of active books at one time, a good dictionary and a few reference books could easily consume quite a bit of RAM. I'd like to have a minimal Palm like this with an SD card slot. I don't need bluetooth, wireless, audio in/out, camera and I do need something that fits in a small pocket.

yawn... (1)

marlinSpike (894812) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774644)

Why Palm still developing handhelds based on PalmOS? I thought they entered an agreement with M$ to use Windows CE on Palms. Is Palm planning to continue developing a next-gen OS alternative to Windows CE?

Re:yawn... (4, Informative)

TimmyDee (713324) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774702)

Palm actually has an agreement with PalmSource to use the Palm OS in their devices until 2008 (or something close to then). For whatever reason, they didn't see fit to use Cobalt initially, and now that PalmSource has been focusing on Palm-on-Linux middleware, they're probably waiting for that to come out. Apps that run on Cobalt will run on POL, but they'll need a recompile. No sense in making your customers undergo two major OS changes in two years. They're probably also playing it safe since the sale of PalmSource to Access.

In any case, Palm appears to finally be positioning themselves as a device manufacturer that does some value-added stuff to whichever OS they are using. There are rumors floating around that there is Symbian version of the Treo. They're OS strategy seems to be one that will get them the most marketshare in various markets (smartphones and PDAs in the US, smartphones in EU, smartphones in Asia). My hope is that the Palm OS or POL doesn't get lost in the shuffle. I've used Windows Mobile a lot and still find Garnett a more attractive solution for what I need done.

Re:yawn... (2, Insightful)

adrianmonk (890071) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774734)

Why Palm still developing handhelds based on PalmOS? I thought they entered an agreement with M$ to use Windows CE on Palms.

Yes, they did have an agreement to use Windows Mobile on Palms. But obviously not on all Palms. It would seem that their strategy (for now, at least) is to continue releasing both kinds of devices. They may have plans to ditch Palm OS in the future, but they haven't announced that, and really nobody outside Palm knows whether they are going to do that. (And it might even be the case that nobody inside Palm knows the answer to that question yet.)

Is Palm planning to continue developing a next-gen OS alternative to Windows CE?

Palm spun off operating system development into a separate company, PalmSource, some years back. Palm hasn't been developing a next-generation OS; instead, PalmSource has been working on that. PalmSource will probably continue to do so, but whether Palm will adopt the new version remains to be seen.

Re:yawn... (1)

iocat (572367) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774984)

I'm sorry, but could the Palm, PalmSource, Palm doesn't make PalmPilots situation be *more* confused and fscked up? No. When I need an org chart to figure out who made my PDA, things are bad.

They should just sell EVERYTHING back to US Robotics and be done with it.

FTR, my many-years-old US Robotics branded PalmPilot (Pro, I think... the first one with a backlight) still works fine.

Garnet or WinCE? (1)

janvo (639733) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774650)

What is Palm's strategy with regards to operating systems? How they going to be totally heterogenous and distribute hardware supporting both Windows Mobile and Palm OS operating systems (Garnet)? Is there any information on whether or not they're phasing out Garnet already ?

Re:Garnet or WinCE? (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774693)

I wouldn't care which OS they used on their hardware, so long as you could transfer data between the devices.

Re:Garnet or WinCE? (2, Funny)

doublem (118724) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775982)

What is Palm's strategy with regards to operating systems?

Slap together whatever can, put it in a cheap, fragile shell, add some new graphics so it looks new and snazzy, and send it to production.

Teapipe-X? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13774678)

Who the hell smokes tea, and why the hell would you buy your pipe from an electronics maker?

"...for better compatibility." (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774739)

The PIM apps more closely resemble Microsoft Outlook for better compatibility.

Right...how much something looks like Microsoft Outlook is directly proportional to how well-formed its email messages will be. Unless, of course, they're referring to ease-of-transition.

Irrelevant with today's topics. (3, Insightful)

Enzo1977 (112600) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774765)

Does the T|X or the Z22 play at least two gigs of music or have instant messaging? Otherwise it is completely irrelevant to the buzz today.

But honestly, I was so jacked up a couple years ago when the Zire first came out. I had to have it. The Zire is/was affordable and met all of my needs at the time. Then I discovered I could have SMS messages sent to my cellular phone as a reminder for my appointments (free incoming messages on my plan). Likewise I was rarely ever away from home or work and needed to know someone's work or home address; so I kept all my contacts on my phone, and kept up with my appointments via SMS messages and effectively made my Zire obsolete.

I'm certain others will find a spectacular value in the T|X with all of its functions especially being able to edit word and excel files on their handheld and transmitting those files wirelessly. But I tend to save those kinds of functions to be done at work place. My time is just that, my time.

Re:Irrelevant with today's topics. (1)

hey! (33014) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775068)

Otherwise it is completely irrelevant to the buzz today.

Right. So a really smart business strategy is to enter a crowded marketplace with a me-too product, as opposed to going back to basics with sold, reasonably priced product that builds on the things people who like your product want.

In any case, you can buy a 2G SD card for about $149. Add this to, say, a $129 Zire 31, you have a 2GB MP3 player for $270. Not exactly a bargain if all you want is an MP3 player; but you also get a PDA.

Re:Irrelevant with today's topics. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13776572)

Does the T|X or the Z22 play at least two gigs of music

Add a 2GB MMC card, and then you have your answer.

Does the T|X or the Z22 have instant messaging?

There's a Palm AIM client [aol.com] , and the T|X has WiFi (didn't read about the Z22), so the answer is yes.

Palms Across the Water (1)

Doc Ruby (173196) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774766)

Now that Palm is releasing a MS Smartphone, will "Palm" become just a brand name, and not a specific technology? Will Palm wind up licensing the Linux/PalmOS software [palmsource.com] back from PalmSource, or even reacquiring PalmSource combined with its Access, its new Japanese owner [palmsource.com] ?

Too little, too late (2, Funny)

drgonzo59 (747139) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774778)

This is like trying to revive NeXT or OS/2. They had the whole handheld market "in the bag" and messed up. It is time to move on...

Re:Too little, too late (4, Funny)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774867)

Yeah, who on Earth would use NeXT? Even if they upgraded it, made it prettier, and wrote a whole bunch of software for it, I think I'd still stick with OSX.

Re:Too little, too late (3, Funny)

birge (866103) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775145)

Funny, the last time I made the same point, it was modded down as flamebait. I guess it pays to post in the right topic: If you're going to say something about Apple, do it on a story about Palm.

Re:Too little, too late (1)

CreatureComfort (741652) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775301)


It's a matter of shades of grey and relative evils.

Re:Too little, too late (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775582)

What was the "same point" you were making? I'm not sure I was making a point. Do you mean that you tried cracking the same joke, and people didn't get it?

Re:Too little, too late (1)

birge (866103) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775820)

No, I pointed out that OS X was Apple's desperate last ditch act of buying a dead OS and then making it pretty to replace their failed attempt at building a modern OS of their own and that it's actually quite old technology that has been given a superficial face lift. Now that I think of it, I guess I can see why I was modded flamebait and you were modded funny....

Re:Too little, too late (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776115)

Not only can I see why that was modded flamebait, but I don't think it's really accurate.

Re:Too little, too late (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13775317)

Apple... and then they called it OSX

Re:Too little, too late (1)

jonom (109588) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775840)

I dunno, I know several people who still use NeXTs and love them.

Re:Too little, too late (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775994)

Yeah, umm... it was a joke. I was questioning whether it made sense to talk about "reviving" NeXT when it's not really dead, and, in fact, is enjoying quite a bit of success in its latest incarnation, although it's been rebranded and updated quite a lot.

Batteries (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13774779)

Sorry Palm, without user replaceable batteries, your products are dead.

Re:Batteries (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774904)

That's what they said about iPods.

Re:Batteries (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13774977)

Yeah, just like the iPod. Apple is SO dead.

Re:Batteries (1)

Izhido (702328) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775135)

Um... do you have a cell phone? Just checking...

Re:Batteries (1)

ReardenMetal (648124) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775311)

With a battery that lasts for days, why would this be a problem? I've been with Palm since the old monochrome days and one of the reasons I've stayed is that the device can be run all day without needing a recharge. Granted, the new colour screens, such as on my Zire71 do eat juice, but I still get 2-3 working days out of it between charges.
And hey, my Vaio has a 'user replaceable' battery, but at over £150 to 'replace' it with a new one, you won't see me queuing up at PC world to stock up.

Re:Batteries (1)

m50d (797211) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776662)

Yeah, because we all know a small portable device with non-replaceable batteries that died after a bit would be a complete failure in the marketplace. Oh, wait.

Surely I'm not alone... (4, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774795)

I imagine I'm not the only one who finds Palms woefully inadequate? I've owned a couple Palms, and found them buggy and ever-crashing, filled with neat gimmicky software that's more or less unusable for real tasks. I guess the address book and calendar were fine, and maybe there were a couple games worth playing, but that seemed to be it for me. Music and photos were slow to transfer, and required using Palm's horrible hotsync utility, and even once they were on the device, the interface for viewing/listening was pretty frustrating.

Really, I've always thought palms were the epitome of the cool-but-useless-gadget phenomenon. I thought the Lifedrive, at least, was getting on to the right track. Bluetooth and Wifi, a 4GB drive, an actual file browser and the ability to transfer files like it was a normal external hard drive... I might, in theory, be able to use something like that. A couple revisions and a new (stable) operating system, and I might actually buy one. The current model however, when I tried one out, the included web browser kept crashing and the connection to an otherwise stable Wifi access point kept dropping.

At this rate, I think we'll see an iPod with an input device and wireless networking before Palm gets their act together and makes a device worth carrying around.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (1)

steevc (54110) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775192)

I went from a IIIx to a Zire 71 about 3 years ago and didn't regret buying either. The IIIx was a great little organiser, but the Zire took me into the world of multimedia. I've played a few short movies on it, but it gets much more use as an audio player using Aeroplayer. Just plug in an SD card and you are sorted for several hours of music before it needs a recharge.

The IIIx still sort of works, but may have developed a dodgy joint as it keeps losing power.

The Zire does have some issues with reliability due to the ribbon cable between the two parts and mine has been back once. The camera is crap, but handy if you don't have anything else with you. Wifi might be nice, but there are few available options and they tend to mean giving up the memory card.

The Palm software is good at what it does and hardly ever crashes. It's usually 3rd-party apps that cause problems. I need to work out which one is causing search to crash. The GUI is limited, but it's not meant to be a full PC. That will cost you more and mean compromises in size and battery life.

I would consider the TX as an upgrade, but don't really need it. There's just too few cases where I need internet when out and about. If the Zire died I would think about it.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (1)

OutOfMyTree (810249) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775457)

Softick's Card Export program does a great job of transferring files to and from an SD card in your Palm without any added hassle -- the card appears on a PC as USB mass storage.
http://www.softick.com/cardexport2/ [softick.com]

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (2, Insightful)

TwinkieStix (571736) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775898)

I'm not sure that you've used them the in the best mannor. The hotsync isn't a good way to get data onto the palm. The SD card slot is. Just put whatever media you want to listen to or play and use TCPMP [corecodec.org] to listen/watch. The same goes for documents such as .doc, .xls, and .ppt files. Photos can be stored in the card just like any camera.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776076)

That may be true, but it speaks worse of Palm, in my mind, that I would need to do a lot of research, finding extra software and buying extra hardware, coming up with obscure hacks, or whatever, in order to use their devices in "the best manner". They should figure out the best manner for using their devices, and provide what's necessary to use them that way out of the box.

As it is, I feel like the hardware may be fine, but their software is all long overdue for an update in order to make everything a lot easier to deal with. As a simple example, the last palm I owned had the ability to draw little sketches, and I don't remember if they could then be synced and viewed through their palm desktop software, but they offered no means to export those pictures into standard graphic formats. What sense does that make?

I think I even like the idea of a hotsync manager, but why no allow the palm device to be mounted as a disk, and then have highly configurable syncing software that would automatically keep whatever documents you wanted up-to-date on as many computers as you chose, but allow you to manually copy other things directly through the OS?

I've just run into too many issues where the Palm software forces you to do things one way, which has a bunch of drawbacks, and when I hacked another way around it, it had another set of drawbacks. In neither case did it really work well.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (3, Insightful)

lidocaineus (661282) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775985)

Clearly what you want is NOT a PDA - you want a portable drive. A PDA is supposed to be small, fit in your pocket, and do basic PIM stuff (at least, that's what they were originally for). Photos are a nice bonus, but really, who wants to sit and thumb through photos on a PDA more than a few times? And music? Well most PDAs handle them fine, though you do have to get some flash memory to up the storage to decent levels. Games? Please. Aside from the quick jaunt of Bejeweled or whatever, most people use them for you know... work? Appointments? Storing and retrieving documents on the move?

Let me give you an example. My PDA stores my appointments, to do stuff, random notes I leave myself everyday, driving directions, email, voice memos, shopping lists, PDFs and other documents, a password database (encrypted), and random files that I store on the 1GB SD card (this is a Palm Tungsten T|3). It rarely crashes. I use it constantly for reference. This is what most people use a PDA for.

But web browsing? Well it works fine for me (PDA->bluetooth->BT phone), but it's not something I do often enough to complain about. And who surfs the internet seriously on a PDA? Again, you do it to look things up quickly or to bookmark a site for future reference. While PDA capabilities and the uses of the hardware continue to expand (phone integration, GPS, etc), they aren't meant as a replacement to your laptop (yet) or portable storage device (yet). Don't try and shoehorn fringe functionality into what it's meant to do (unless the machine is designed for it, ie, that weird ass Lifedrive).

I'll close on the fact that while I used to love Palm, they are in such a "what kind of company are we now?" mode that it's disheartening. The T|5 here doesn't do much that my T|3 doesn't, and nothing has impressed me as much when I first used the old Palm Vx.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776562)

Clearly what you want is NOT a PDA

So you're saying, I should only be expecting Palm to make an address book, calendar, and a couple notes here and there, in a pocket-sized device? Well, welcome to 10 years ago, where I already had a Palm that could do that. What has Palm done lately?

As far as my experience goes, there's nothing innovative or elegant about Palm's approach. Neither are they pushing the limits of what a handheld device can do, nor are they scaling back their devices to be simple yet effective PDAs that are small, light, energy-efficient, and cheap. I would applaud either course. As it is, it seems more like they're steering a middle course, where they make their devices bigger, clunkier, more expensive power hogs in order to pack in some features that you claim nobody really uses.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (2, Insightful)

lidocaineus (661282) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776707)

One more time: do not shoehorn what you want on a device that isn't designed that way. You want a mass storage device. Fine. Go get one. You don't think Palm is innovating anymore? I completely agree. However, don't go around saying that Palm's suck because you want a large amount of space to carry around (4GB) with file management and a good web browsing experience; Palm never claimed that's what their goals were with 99% of their devices (the Lifedrive being the exception). What you find gimicky, many people can't seem to function properly without. And stability? Palm's may be a little pokey, but stability is not one of their problems.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776906)

One more time: Palm in my experience, Palm devices don't do anything particularly well except for simple calendaring/address book. I've tried the music player, I've tried the cameras, I've tried the wifi, email, web browsing, outlook connectivity, picture viewing, and lots of other features. These are all features that Palm advertises that these products do, and they don't, in my experience, do them well, easily, elegantly, or with much stability.

The most you can do is claim to have had different experiences, but you yourself seem to be claiming that these Palm advertised features are not what the device was designed for. Either way, I've shared my experience, and you have no grounds to argue that this has not been my experience.

Re:Surely I'm not alone... (2, Interesting)

zlogic (892404) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776283)

I did a hard-reset on my Palm Zire 71 a year ago. No problems. On my Toshiba (which I've had before) the longest time Windows lived for was four months after which everything went crap.
Oh, and I did my last soft-reset a month ago...
There was a bug in IE back in Pocket PC2002 (released in 2001) when instead of loading a page the IE logo flashed for a secong and stopped all navigation. To fix it, you have to run \Windows\welcome.exe
Well, one of my friends bought a Fujitsu-Siemens Pocket LOOX 720 (or something like that) and another bought something like hp iPaq 2110 (the most recent entry-level one with Bluetooth).
Guess what? In 2005 they still have that problem! The only good thing about WinMob is a great variety of games.
Palm (or Palmone?) too has some crappy bugs, but these are usually related not with the system but with third-party Palm-branded apps like Novarra (Palm Web Pro), Multimail (Palm Versamail) etc.
So, when Palm have announced a Windows-powered Treo 650 (on their front page), they're losing a customer in me.
IMHO PalmOS is just too old and Winmob too buggy. Zaurus failed to gain marketshare (and it costs a lot).
So, in this situation I fail to see a PDA that would suit me. For non-gamers the best solution is probably a Palm m500-like PDA for reading books (maybe with a better screen) + iPod or other good music player. Beleive me, I use my Zire 90% for music and 9% for reading books while on the road. The rest 1% is PIM and stuff like dictionaries/calculators. If I exclude music, a B&W-screened PDA with a 100Mhz processor would fit perfectly.

not as good as bailed third parties (3, Interesting)

kisrael (134664) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774799)

I dunno, it doesn't look as if Palm is doing anything as good as the thirdparties used to...the Sony Clie SJ22 (same demographic as the Z22) had a 320*320 screen, which was Sony's default, even on their cheapest B+W models. Plus Palm is confused about form factors...crude sexual jokes aside, they focus solely on the thickness, as opposed to the side to side width. The Tungsten's weren't very good to hold, kind of cutting into your outstretched hand, but the SJ22 felt much better, thicker but not as wide. (Of course it limits the size of the screen, but still.)

Ah well. I just Ebay'd up that Samsung clamshell Palm/phone...Palm/Treo doesn't understand the beauty of clamshell design either.

I've been a Palm loyalist since 1997, but even to me it's clear the future ain't so bright for the brand and the nice little UI.

What is up with the PALMONE acquisition? (1)

kuzb (724081) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774859)

I just got a Palm Lifedrive a month and a half ago, and a lot of my friends really like the device, but I'm hesitant to recommend it to people until we have some indication of which way the operating system for it is going. If the company that acquired palmone doesn't keep up with the OS, I don't see any point in investing in Palm any further. Too bad if they don't too, Palm makes nice devices.

Re:What is up with the PALMONE acquisition? (1)

TrekCycling (468080) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775797)

Actually I couldn't disagree more. Palm DID make nice devices, IMO. But the recent round of color screens either are garishly painful on the eyes (Palm Zire 31) or they develop this problem where the screen makes a high-pitched whine or buzzing sound after a couple months (Tungsten, etc.). I went with Pocket PC because of the hardware problems with Palm. I would gladly switch back if one of these devices had a decent screen, but I'm not holding my breath. I'll wait until I can see one in the store.

Coralized (2, Informative)

Milican (58140) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774869)

Coralized Link #1 [nyud.net]
Coralized Link #2 [nyud.net] \

JOhn

Re:Coralized (1)

suwain_2 (260792) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774915)

My college campus blocks port 8090 (?!). MirrorDot [mirrordot.com] has caches, too, in case anyone else is in my situation.

Re:Coralized (2, Funny)

Milican (58140) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775010)

That sucks. Could you write the admin and ask them to unblock it?

JOhn

Why not Palm Pilot (3, Insightful)

b0bby (201198) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774880)

I had one of the original Palm Pilots, and I've never understood why they lost the Pilot name. Most (non-techie) people I know still talk about "pilots" when they are referring to any PDA. Is it too generic or something?

Re:Why not Palm Pilot (3, Informative)

Ensign Regis (249331) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774936)

They got into legal trouble. According to Brighthand [brighthand.com] the Pilot Pen Corporation sued them in 1998 for trademark dilution.

Re:Why not Palm Pilot (1)

b0bby (201198) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775082)

Ah, bummer for them...
Thanks, I hadn't heard that.

Re:Why not Palm Pilot (1)

absurdist (758409) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775038)

The Pilot pen company brought a suit against them for trademark infringement.

I still have an original Pilot (1)

Darius Jedburgh (920018) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775355)

The display is better than any modern Palm - though monochrome it's clear in just about any lighting conditions, bright sunlight or pitch black (with backlight). It works nicely with 15 minute rechargeable NiMh AAA which blows away any of the expensive difficult-to-replace LiPoly batteries in new Palms. It uses Graffiti rather than Graffiti 2 so it's possible to enter text reliably on it without using an external keyboard. And it looks pretty close to how it looked when I bought it 8 years ago (even though I used it for 4 years) unlike my Tungsten T|3 which has become worn down because of friction from the protective flip cover itself(!!!). One other thing, the glass screen has no scratches on it unlike recent plastic displays which scratch horribly pretty quickly. All in all, I think the original Pilot is yet to be beaten apart from the lack of SD card support.

MBA 101 : Do not piss off existing customers (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13774917)

By dropping the Tungsten brand , they are pissing off existing customers like me who are Tungsten owners. I am not sure whether they will win new customers or not but I know for a fact that I am not buying any more stuff from Palm.

Dropping the Tungsten and Zire names (1)

btornado (612847) | more than 8 years ago | (#13774955)

Am I the only one who does not like Palm dropping the Tungsten and Zire names in favor of the T and Z prefixes? To new users unfamiliar with Palm, it would probably be seen as useless letters in front of a useless number that adds confusion as to what the letters stand for.

This seems to be something HP has done with the iPaqs, with their endless amount of models. Just from looking at their site, they have an h, hx, rx, and rz prefix, which is then followed by a series of 4 numbers. These numbers and prefixes mean nothing to me, since I am not an iPaq user, but I am assuming that the higher the number, the more features it has.

Mac compatibility seems hobbled (3, Interesting)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775031)

I own a Tungsten T3, and Mac compatibility is pretty limited. Going through some of the features on the new models, I am curious why the Palm needs an SD card to play MP3 files if you're syncing it with a Mac? What kind of sense does that make? How come Windows can store files directly in the on-board flash memory and the Mac can't?

Re:Mac compatibility seems hobbled (1)

Keely (105228) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775235)

>I am curious why the Palm needs an SD card to play MP3 files if
>you're syncing it with a Mac?

It's not just a Mac thing - my T3 won't let me play mp3s from on-board memory, either, and I'm syncing to a Windows box.

Re:Mac compatibility seems hobbled (1)

biglig2 (89374) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776425)

PalmOS only expects to find two sorts of files on it's memory disk. Palm apps (.prc) and Palm database files (.pdb). And no foilders. It's historical, and makes sense for what palms were originally designed for - pocket devices that had apps that consulted a single database file, such as your diary.

Palms back then were designed to run very simple and effective programs very fast. And they did. You kids today don't remember how incredibly fucking badly the early Microsoft PDAs sucked. I mean, they were totally unusable.

SD cards are treated differently, since they already have a file system defined on them (it's FAT isn't it?), so Palm apps expecting to read off SD cards had to be able to deal with a more traditional file system.

Re:Mac compatibility seems hobbled (1)

Herve5 (879674) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776566)

T5 can store/play mp3 etc from its own memory (in addition to the optional sd card)

The TX is close... (4, Funny)

benmhall (9092) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775050)

but Palm still hasn't come up with a PDA to beat Sony's last Clie models. My Tj-37 is two years old and has WiFi, a camera, lots of expansion, a small form-factor and great battery life. And before anyone goes on to say that "a business PDA doesn't need a camera" let me say that I use the crappy camera in my Tj-37 all the time. Sure, it's not a 2MP wonder, but I do have it with me all the time.

If and when my Tj-37 dies, I'll likely replace it with a Clie TH-55. [brighthand.com] This thing has wifi, 320x480 and absolutely awesome 8+ hour battery life again in 2003. The EU version even had bluetooth. With the camera and small form-factor, Palm still hasn't come up with an equal to this device. Really, Palm 2005 is just now catching up to the Clie from two years ago.

It's a shame, when Sony pulled out of the market, Palm OS and the Palm platform just stagnated.

Re:The TX is close... (1)

pruss (246395) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776664)

The CPU is much faster on the TX than on the TH (nice for video playback, for instance, unless one is using video software heavily optimized for the TH's video accelerator), NVFS is nice (no danger of losing data when memory runs out), and the large amount of Program Memory is nice, too. The TH needs third-party software for landscape support.

PocketMod is my new Palm (3, Interesting)

joelsanda (619660) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775132)

My last two Palms - a Tungsten and a Zire 72 - made high-pitched humming noises. So loud I could hear it while sitting down and reading an eBook or reviewing notes. The Zire 72 runs out of battery juice within 45 minutes if I have the Wi-Fi card running.

Add to that experience the poor syncing with my Mac OS X and frequent Palm Desktop crashes with Windows XP SP2, I started syncing my calendar, address book, and notes to my iPod.

To scribble quick notes down I use The PocketMod [pocketmod.com] - an ingenious combination of paper, planner, and orgami. A single sheet of paper becomes a folded booklet with eight different pages. No batteries, it's paper so if I drop it I don't cringe, and I get a new one every week!

Re:PocketMod is my new Palm (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775217)

To scribble quick notes down I use The PocketMod - an ingenious combination of paper, planner, and orgami. A single sheet of paper becomes a folded booklet with eight different pages. No batteries, it's paper so if I drop it I don't cringe, and I get a new one every week!

Nifty! If I didn't already comment in this section, I'd give you a +1 interesting. Hopefully others will see fit to do the same.

Re:PocketMod is my new Palm (1)

Darius Jedburgh (920018) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775255)

I'm wondering how you read eBooks on your pocketMod...

Re:PocketMod is my new Palm (3, Funny)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775466)

Here are simple step-by-step directions:
  1. Go to library.
  2. Check out book you want to read.
  3. Open PocketMod to pages 3-4
  4. Insert book you want to read
  5. Enjoy!

Re:PocketMod is my new Palm (1)

Darius Jedburgh (920018) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775761)

I'm stuck on step 4. I just can't compact my Webster's Unabridged down to size...

Re:PocketMod is my new Palm (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 8 years ago | (#13776270)

I understand that there are compression schemes, but sadly they are all lossy.

Finally Palm catches up with Sony.... Almost... (1)

alanh (29068) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775155)

In February of 2004, Sony released the Clie TH-55. Here's a review of it:
        http://www.brighthand.com/article/Sony_Clie_TH55_R eview [brighthand.com]

For comparison, these have basically the same specs except:

Sony TH-55 advantages:
  • Voice recorder
  • VGA camera
  • longer battery life


Palm TX advantages:
  • BT and WiFi vs. US TH-55's WiFi, though Japanese and Euro TH-55's had both
  • faster processor
  • more memory (128 vs 32 MB)
  • non-volatile memory (survives battery running out)


I've been a PalmOS user for many years, and this is the most appealing device since the Tungsten|T3, and the price is competitive. However, this is what they should have released almost two years ago!

sorry palm, I already jumped ship (3, Informative)

arkhan_jg (618674) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775197)

I've been using palms for years, but I've finally jumped ship. I've just replaced my tungsten E with a dell axim X51V. I wanted to stay with palm, but I needed a top-end unit with wifi and a high-res screen for effectively replacing my old department laptop when I'm out of the office.

the 51v is nearly 50% more expensive than this new T|X, but since work is paying, price wasn't really an object. The screen is 480x640; it has 802.11b and bluetooth 1.2 (though the bluetooth seems broken on windows mobile 5 for prety much anything except file transfer and activesync at the moment); a damn sight more software runs on windows mobile rather than palm os (stock PIM software is about the same; pocketplus and pocket breeze rock bigtime); double the storage (256MB vs 128); and a user-replacable battery, so I can buy up to 3300mAh if I'm going to be away from mains for a long time (stock is 1100mAh). The CF + sd slot looks to be really useful too, as I'll get myself a 4GB microdrive as well as several useful addin cards that go in the CF slot; and the processor runs up to 624Mhz. Average lifetime is about 4 hours solid use, and since it's non-volatile storage, it doesn't matter if the battery goes flat. Spanks the best palms available, including this new one easily.

If palm sold a top-end PDA with similar specs, I would have stayed. As it is, I think palm are going to struggle to hold onto anything other than the entry-level PDA and smartphone market. Even in the midrange, existing pocket pc's compare well with this brand new palm.

I missed the Palm era but I love my Nokia 770 (2, Insightful)

mibh (920980) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775342)

It's very hard to understand why a non-Linux PDA is of any interest to this crowd. My Nokia 770 came in last week.

Palm OS still has some advantages (1)

Deslock (86955) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775374)

A lot of people slam Palm OS for not having multitasking or memory protection (and being somewhat buggy on the T5) but it still has some advantages. Namely, it's very fast, syncs reliably, and is easy to use one-handed.

When I first switched to Pocket PC, I found the interface to be horribly clunky, syncing a pain in the ass, and memory management a joke. And I was always waiting for things to happen and many times I ran into weirdness that required a reboot. I went back to Palm out of disgust.

Last year I re-switched to Pocket PC when wifi-enabled VGA devices that could play 30-fps hi-res DIVX movies came out... the OS still scared me, but the hardware was too cool to resist.

But now I don't use my PDA as a PDA. It's still slow. It still runs out of memory. Switching between landscape and portrait modes takes several seconds and the screen elements don't always render properly.

I find it to be so damn frustrating that I usually leave it at home. I was hoping Windows Mobile 5 would solve some of the problems, but because of how it's changed its use of non-volitile memory, it's much slower at various tasks (read some of the reviews... opening a Word document that took 3 seconds with Windows Mobile 2003 now takes 18 seconds).

Reportedly the T|X has solved the T5 bugs. Sure, multitasking comes in handy now and then, but right about now Palm's instant task-switching is sounding more appealing than Windows Mobile's crappy multitasking.

Aplm OS, Now, with 50% more crashes! (1)

doublem (118724) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775453)

If I had a dollar for every time my *&%&^$ Palm Pilot froze on me during a hotsync, I could buy a damn Pocket PC.

Even in the default configuration, a simple sync operation can crash the OS and crash it hard. I gave up on the notion of keeping the think updated. I just jot the changes down on a piece of paper so I can enter them on my computer at home. I've lost WAY too many phone numbers and address updates to a hotsync that went to bad I had to do a hard reset to recover from it.

Palm's slogan should be "How do you want your data mangled today?"

I've been advising my family and friends against Palm for ages, eve since I had chronic problems with my damn T2, and Palm tech support was useless. They dragged the tech issue on for weeks until my warranty had expired, and only THEN did they say I should send it in for service. Great, I'm going to spend over half the purchase price to get it serviced. Sure.

One of these days I need to get around replacing it with something more stable, like WinCE or pen and paper.

I got my hands on one of these T|Xes... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13775581)

LAst weeekend: they showed up at the store VERY early and I'll tell you what: It's a gorgeous unit. Comfortable to hold, very fast, and the wifi and bluetooth work as advertised. They are very hot little items. I've been considering a small laptop, but between the improvements in Graffiti (my last palm was a m125) and the wireless, I might have to change my mind.

Please keep in mind (0, Flamebait)

johansalk (818687) | more than 8 years ago | (#13775699)

This is a personal information manager, not an ipod competitor, not a pimp toy, none of that stuff. I bought Palm machines over the years and I really resent that the crossing over of the device into the moronic mainstream meant Palm had to deal with user feedback that was in my opinion quite idiotic. This was a device that got its breakthrough for being able to organise your days, keep your appointments, tasks and contacts for years to come in pocket and within a click, and so on - but then the morons got on board and you had all those 'users' complaining about not being able to watch movie trailers or simpsons' episodes on their device, why oh why would I want to watch a movie trailer on my personal information manager?!!! to my horror palm went along with their nonsense and 'pimped' out the devices till reliability in build and operation suffered and battery longevity was devastated - battery life went from a month to now just a few hours, ranging from less than 3 in some devices to 7 at most in the most undesirable device (z21). I hate those who won't buy a Palm if it won't play a song or a movie trailer - just friggin' don't buy it and shut up about it alright.

Re:Please keep in mind (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13776537)

Not a pimp toy? Well forget it then!


Then again, I don't see why pimps wouldn't find it useful--contact management, schedules, a small business account entry app, a quick self-destruct... Some might opt for a model with a built-in camera.

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