Sunday, January 11, 2009

I want a Palm Pre

Pretty much everyone who knows me knows my loyalty to Palm. I've had one since 1997. I've been syncing it with enterprise calendar systems so I have my personal and work calendars going back to February 1996. I currently have a Centro, and even though I have to manually key in all my work events because we use such an old version of Groupwise that I can't seem to find a sync that works, I am still devoted to my Palm.

I cannot count the number of friends and colleagues who have iPhones and have done their best to convert me. The Urbanspoon app and its clever use of the accelerometer to randomize recommendations by shaking the phone almost had me. My answer is always that if they can promise me that I can port over everything I have on my Centro -- 13 years of calendar, hundreds of contacts, notes, to-do lists, and ebooks -- then I'll consider it.

I am now waiting with baited breath for the Palm Pre. It's such a step forward in the interface (a card stack metaphor) and operating system (its WebOS is Linux) and browser (based on WebKit). It doesn't use the Palm desktop anymore, which while be a paradigm switch for me, but they have promised data migration tools for Centro users.

I know that some apps I use won't work anymore, and Raymond's concern about no backwards compatibility of the OS is a real one. But they need to move on and I need to move on, and I'm glad it looks like it will be to another Palm. You can't always be fully backwards compatible. Hey, I only complained a little when I discovered I couldn't run FileMake Mobile on my Centro, didn't I?

Reviews at Gizmodo, ars technica, PC World, and a PC World FAQ.

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