Monday, February 15, 2010

Microsoft Unveils Windows Phone 7 Series

Earlier today, Microsoft's Steve Ballmer showed off the next generation of Microsoft's mobile operating system: Windows Phone 7 Series.

BARCELONA, Spain — Feb. 15, 2010 — Today at Mobile World Congress 2010, Microsoft Corp. CEO Steve Ballmer unveiled the next generation of Windows® Phones, Windows Phone 7 Series. With this new platform, Microsoft offers a fresh approach to phone software, distinguished by smart design and truly integrated experiences that bring to the surface the content people care about from the Web and applications. For the first time ever, Microsoft will bring together Xbox LIVE games and the Zune music and video experience on a mobile phone, exclusively on Windows Phone 7 Series. Partners have already started building phones; customers will be able to purchase the first phones in stores by holiday 2010.
“Today, I’m proud to introduce Windows Phone 7 Series, the next generation of Windows Phones,” said Steve Ballmer, chief executive officer at Microsoft. “In a crowded market filled with phones that look the same and do the same things, I challenged the team to deliver a different kind of mobile experience. Windows Phone 7 Series marks a turning point toward phones that truly reflect the speed of people’s lives and their need to connect to other people and all kinds of seamless experiences.”
Designed for Life in Motion

With Windows Phone 7 Series, Microsoft takes a fundamentally different approach to phone software. Smart design begins with a new, holistic design system that informs every aspect of the phone, from its visually appealing layout and motion to its function and hardware integration. On the Start screen, dynamically updated “live tiles” show users real-time content directly, breaking the mold of static icons that serve as an intermediate step on the way to an application. Create a tile of a friend, and the user gains a readable, up-to-date view of a friend’s latest pictures and posts, just by glancing at Start.

Every Windows Phone 7 Series phone will come with a dedicated hardware button for Bing, providing one-click access to search from anywhere on the phone, while a special implementation of Bing search provides intent-specific results, delivering the most relevant Web or local results, depending on the type of query.

Windows Phone 7 Series creates an unrivaled set of integrated experiences on a phone through Windows Phone hubs. Hubs bring together related content from the Web, applications and services into a single view to simplify common tasks. Windows Phone 7 Series includes six hubs built on specific themes reflecting activities that matter most to people:

  • People. This hub delivers an engaging social experience by bringing together relevant content based on the person, including his or her live feeds from social networks and photos. It also provides a central place from which to post updates to Facebook and Windows Live in one step.

  • Pictures. This hub makes it easy to share pictures and video to a social network in one step. Windows Phone 7 Series also brings together a user’s photos by integrating with the Web and PC, making the phone the ideal place to view a person’s entire picture and video collection.

  • Games. This hub delivers the first and only official Xbox LIVE experience on a phone, including Xbox LIVE games, Spotlight feed and the ability to see a gamer’s avatar, Achievements and gamer profile. With more than 23 million active members around the world, Xbox LIVE unlocks a world of friends, games and entertainment on Xbox 360, and now also on Windows Phone 7 Series.

  • Music + Video. This hub creates an incredible media experience that brings the best of Zune, including content from a user’s PC, online music services and even a built-in FM radio into one simple place that is all about music and video. Users can turn their media experience into a social one with Zune Social on a PC and share their media recommendations with like-minded music lovers. The playback experience is rich and easy to navigate, and immerses the listener in the content.

  • Marketplace. This hub allows the user to easily discover and load the phone with certified applications and games.

  • Office. This hub brings the familiar experience of the world’s leading productivity software to the Windows Phone. With access to Office, OneNote and SharePoint Workspace all in one place, users can easily read, edit and share documents. With the additional power of Outlook Mobile, users stay productive and up to date while on the go.
Availability

Partners from around the world have committed to include Windows Phone 7 Series in their portfolio plans. They include mobile operators AT&T, Deutsche Telekom AG, Orange, SFR, Sprint, Telecom Italia, Telefónica, Telstra, T-Mobile USA, Verizon Wireless and Vodafone, and manufacturers Dell, Garmin-Asus, HTC Corp., HP, LG, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Toshiba and Qualcomm Inc. The first phones will be available by holiday 2010. Customers who would like to receive additional information about Windows Phone 7 Series and be notified when it is available can register at http://www.windowsphone7series.com.

To watch the full replay of Steve Ballmer’s press conference at Mobile World Congress, and to experience Windows Phone 7 Series through an online product demo, readers can visit http://www.microsoft.com/news/windowsphone.

Today's Microsoft press release was posted on the Microsoft website.

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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

iPhone Adventures

On Monday I picked up a used first generation 8GB Apple iPhone. (Thank you Shirley!) The phone is in good working condition. What I didn't know, is that that you must activate the iPhone before you can use it; even if you plan on using it, essentially, as an iPod touch.

So what did I learn with my adventures activating my iPhone? First of all, there is no problem with you walking into an AT&T store an signing up for a new service plan with the original G2 GMS iPhone. Secondly, you can use a pre-paid AT&T GoPhone SIM card in your iPhone. To use a pre-paid card, you will need to purchase and activate the pre-paid SIM card in a phone and then move it into the iPhone once it is setup and then activate the iPhone in iTunes as an existing customer. The CellFanatic blog has a good run down of how to do this.

But what if you are like me and don't want to have to deal with another monthly cell phone bill and just use the iPhone as a glorified iPod touch (with a camera), then you may want to go with the slightly shady jail breaking route. My SIM card was disabled because I hadn't used it in 6 months or more and I wasn't planning on throwing $15-30 away on a new one just to activate the iPhone. I used the Blackra1n jail breaking utility to by pass the activation process and make the phone available in iTunes. I did end up putting my "dead" AT&T SIM card into the iPhone to keep it from constantly reminding me that there was no card inserted.

The good news is that everything, minus the Phone and Messages applications, are working normally. If I change my mind, and want to activate the voice and SMS text messaging features, all I need to do is to put in a new, activated 3G AT&T SIM card and I'm ready to rock 'n roll.

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Research In Motion: YANO - Yet Another Network Outage

In case you missed it yesterday afternoon, CrackBerry users where all in a tussle because there devices temporarily transformed into door stops. Turns out that there was some more trouble at the BlackBerry network operations center (NOC), the massive data center where most BlackBerry Internet traffic is routed from.

CrackBerry.com provided a running commentary of what was going on:

"* Update 1: OK, preliminary word coming in is that it's a partial outage affecting North American carriers: BlackBerry Messenger and things like the web browser and apps that use a data connection.

* Update 2: BlackBerry data is no more. No emails, no web browsing, no BlackBerry messenger for it's North American users. Estimated time for a fix to come through is 3 hrs to a day, yes..a day."

At about 6:30pm last night, I had four "dead" BlackBerry phones in my house and four BlackBerry addicts roaming around the house in a daze. We where seeing the data outage on the Verizon Wireless and Sprint networks. Based on what CrackBerry.com was reporting, no carrier was spared in North America. The good news was that my Palm Pre was still working!

You can read the full article on CrackBerry.com.

[Via CrackBerry.com...]

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Saturday, November 28, 2009

AT&T Introduces the HP iPAQ Glisten World Phone

Last week I had posted that HP was still selling handheld PDAs running the Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.0 Classic operating system. Looks like this would be why - HP is working with AT&T to bring a new Windows Mobile powered smartphone to market.

AT&T and HP today [November 24, 2009] announced the upcoming availability of the new HP iPAQ Glisten, a feature-rich 3G world phone that meets the increasing demands of modern mobile professionals. AT&T’s first smartphone with an AMOLED (active-matrix organic light-emitting diode) screen, the HP iPAQ Glisten is loaded with features tailored with the business power user in mind.

Featuring the Microsoft Windows® Mobile 6.5 operating system, the iPAQ Glisten offers a touch-friendly user interface and improved browser with Flash support. Connections to your favorite people, content and applications are a fingertip away on the redesigned Start Menu, and Internet Explorer Mobile supports the rich experiences that many Web pages offer for desktop computers.

“iPAQ Glisten adds to our innovative Windows Phone portfolio,” said Michael Woodward, vice president, Mobile Phone Portfolio, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets. “It meets the demands of our business customers while boasting a beautiful AMOLED touch screen and a full package of multimedia features.”

“The iPAQ Glisten packs a powerful punch with its multiple input methods, variety of connectivity options, and a familiar, consistent email experience that allows mobile professionals to connect with the people and information that matter most to them,” said Susan Macke, vice president, Marketing, Handheld Global Business Unit, Personal Systems Group, HP. “Our strategy for success in growing the iPAQ business and customer base is working with industry leaders, like AT&T and Microsoft, and leveraging our collective strengths in the business and prosumer markets.”

Pricing and availability

The HP iPAQ Glisten will be available in the coming weeks for $229.99 (receive a $50 AT&T Promotion Card with two-year agreement, smartphone data plan). The smartphone will be available through AT&T business services, HP corporate sales, small and medium business and consumer Websites at AT&T.com and HP.com as well as through third-party e-commerce sites.

More information on HP iPAQ Glisten is available at www.att.com/hpipaqglisten and www.hp.com/go/glisten.

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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Watching Wife, Sister-In-Laws Playing with BlackBerry SMS

I find this really comical since my wife hated technology until she "discovered" Facebook. Now, just a few minutes ago, my wife and her sisters where swapping BlackBerry PIN numbers and where having "fun" trying to set it up.

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Monday, November 16, 2009

BlackBerry Curve 8520 Coming to AT&T

Earlier today, AT&T jumped on the BlackBerry Curve 8500-series bandwagon by announcing that the Curve 8520 was heading to AT&T's network "in the coming weeks" for $99.99 with a new or qualifying 2-year service agreement.

AT&T announced today it will introduce the best value in its BlackBerry smartphone portfolio with the addition of the BlackBerry®Curve™ 8520 from Research In Motion.

The BlackBerry Curve 8520 is a stylish, easy-to-use, compact smartphone offering the best value for consumer and business customers looking for BlackBerry service. The smartphone features a full QWERTY keyboard and touch-sensitive trackpad for easy typing and navigation, built-in Wi-Fi® and an advanced media player, plus dedicated media keys, smoothly integrated along the top of the handset, for a convenient way to control music and videos. The handset also provides global connectivity via phone, email, text, IM, picture messaging and social networking, with Facebook®and My Space applications preloaded.

The sleek, new device houses a high-resolution 320x240 display a 512 MHz processor, 256 MB of Flash memory, and a 2 megapixel camera equipped with video recording.
“AT&T was the first choice for BlackBerry in the U.S. and we continue to expand our offering of BlackBerry products to suit the different needs of business and personal users,” said Michael Woodward, vice president, Mobile Phone Portfolio, AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets. “The BlackBerry Curve 8520 offers the best value by combining the essential features of a BlackBerry smartphone with access to AT&T’s network, which includes best coverage worldwide, as well as the nation’s largest Wi-Fi network.”

AT&T users of the new BlackBerry Curve 8520 can enjoy access to the nation’s largest Wi-Fi network with more than 20,000 U.S. hotspots — including approximately 7,000 Starbucks locations. As with all other Wi-Fi enabled BlackBerry smartphones from AT&T, BlackBerry Curve 8520 users with a qualifying data plan, which includes all consumer BlackBerry unlimited data plans, get seamless and unlimited access to these domestic hotspots at no additional cost. When traveling outside the U.S., BlackBerry Curve 8520 users can enjoy the best coverage worldwide with wireless voice coverage in more than 215 countries and wireless data coverage in more than 185 countries.

Mobile users will enjoy great battery life, simultaneous voice and data capabilities when using Wi-Fi, and the ability to access up to 10 corporate and personal email accounts whether they are corporate or personal accounts. The BlackBerry Curve 8520 also affords users the ability to edit Microsoft® Word, Excel® and PowerPoint® files with DataViz®Documents to Go®suite.
"The new BlackBerry Curve 8520 is a great choice for first-time smartphone users and offers easy-to-use messaging, social networking and multimedia features with a full-QWERTY keyboard that makes typing fast and comfortable," said Carlo Chiarello, vice president, product management, Research In Motion.

The BlackBerry Curve 8520 smartphone will be available in the coming weeks for $99.99 after mail-in rebate. (Pay $199.99 and receive $100 AT&T Promotion Card. 2-year agreement on a min. $69.99 plan required.) AT&T smartphones require the purchase of a monthly data plan. Other monthly charges apply.

For more information, visit the AT&T website.

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

Correctly Install MMS on iPhone 3G, 3GS

A number of people have contacted me to let me know that the MMS update is not installing on their iPhone 3G or 3GS.

After installing the MMS update on your iPhone, you must reboot your phone to complete the installation process! Apple has posted the directions for correctly installing the MMS update on your iPhone 3G and 3GS on the web. The last stop of the process reads:

"After iPhone restarts, verify MMS is active by creating a new text message. You should see the camera icon to the left of the text field:"





So how about it, US iPhone 3G and 3GS users, have you been able to successfully install and send an MMS message? Let us know by clicking the Comments link below.

Thanks to Gary R. for the tip!

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Friday, September 25, 2009

MMS Going Live on iPhone 3G, 3GS Today

The good news: iPhone 3G and 3GS owners will finally get access to MMS, or Multimedia Messaging Service, today.

The bad news: To load the software update on your iPhone, you will need to download the update via iTunes and sync your iPhone to your computer.

The really bad news: As we reported last month, original iPhone owners will be left out in the cold! (Sorry Shirley!)

EngadgetMobile's Chris Ziegler writes:
"We've just heard from AT&T that new carrier settings for the iPhone 3G and 3GS will be available "late morning" Pacific Time (which would be early afternoon Eastern) this Friday, September 25, which will finally enable MMS support. Owners will have to tether up to iTunes to grab those settings, so fish out your cable (as if you don't have it permanently attached to your machine already) and make sure you've got some solid time in front of the computer[...]."

[Via EngadgetMobile.com...]

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Friday, September 4, 2009

AT&T Tries to Reach Out to iPhone Owners

As a follow up to yesterday's story that AT&T will finally bring MMS support to the iPhone as an update from Apple which will be made available from their iTunes software, AT&T has posted a video on YouTube to try and reassure their iPhone customers that the company is working hard to address the complaints that people have been leveling against the company.

Of the video, AppleInsider.com writes:
"Standing in front of a picture of the iPhone, the AT&T spokesman says, "we're proud that we've enabled the smartphone revolution." At the end of the segment, he adds the assurance, "we have heard you, we are on it, and we will use this hard won experience to lead the industry into the future."




[Via AppleInsider.com...]

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Thursday, September 3, 2009

MMS Coming to iPhone 3G, 3GS - 9/25/09

It's official! AppleInsider.com is reporting that AT&T will be bringing MMS - multimedia messaging - to the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS on September 25, 2009.

"It was important to give our customers a positive experience from day one," AT&T said. "We support more iPhone customers than any other carrier in the world so we took the time necessary to make sure our network is ready to handle what we expect will be a record volume of MMS traffic. We truly appreciate our customers’ patience and hope they'll understand our desire to get it right from the start."

According to AppleInsider.com, the new feature will come in the form of iTunes downloadable update for 3G and 3GS owners. Unfortunately, owners of the original iPhone will be left out in the cold as they will be locked out from getting the update. I guess that is a subtle hint from AT&T that you need to upgrade.

[Via AppleInsider.com...]

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Sunday, August 30, 2009

AT&T to Require Data Plans

Starting on September 6, 2009, AT&T will require that customers who chose to purchase a smartphone also purchase a data plan in addition to their voice and text messaging plans.

In a recent statement issued by AT&T, a company spokesperson reported:
"Smartphone users tend to consume a higher amount of data services, like advanced e-mail, mobile Web, applications and more," an AT&T press release stated. "Being able to take full advantage of these features without having to worry about a fluctuating or unusually high bill generally leads to greater customer satisfaction, so effective Sept. 6, smartphone customers will need to subscribe to a data plan, as the vast majority of customers already do."

If you currently have an AT&T branded smartphone you will be able to continue using your phone as you always have. However, if "[you] update your device or want to make changes to your account, [you] will have to bring their accounts current, which in some cases may include subscribing to a data plan."

The requirement for a data plan isn't something new for AT&T. There are some devices that the wireless company already requires a data plan for, which includes the wildly popular Apple iPhone.

If you have been thinking about upgrading your AT&T smartphone and hoped to keep the data plan off your monthly bill, you should get yourself down to an AT&T store before September 6 when then new Terms of Service rules go into effect.

[Via PCMag.com…]

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Sunday, June 28, 2009

What's Up with Palm on AT&T?

I was just looking at the AT&T website, and I noticed that there are no Centro or Treo 750 smartphones available for sale. I'll admit that both devices, the Palm OS 5 Centro and the Windows Mobile Treo 750 aren't new devices by any definition, but you would expect that AT&T would still have some units in stock.

I have read some Internet rumors that said that the Palm webOS powered Eos smartphone would be arriving on the AT&T network sometime around the end of the year, but nothing specific. I have also not read anythign that would indicate that Palm is halted the sale of the AT&T smartphones.

Windows Mobile customers can still get the Palm Treo Pro as an unlocked device and use their existing AT&T 3G SIM cards with the device if they wish.

I'll have to keep an eye on this one.

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Thursday, May 28, 2009

Rumor: A Pair of AT&T Phones Get Leaked

Engadget is reporting that AT&T has some new phone goodness headed our way for the back half of 2009.

If the frenzy around the Palm Pre coming to Sprint in just about 9 days doesn't make your head spin, Palm fans should get ready for the Palm Eos which is expected to show up on AT&T. Eos is expected to replace the last Palm OS smartphone currently on the market, the Palm Centro. From the slides that Engadget got their hands on, we have now officially leared that Eos' code name was the long rumored "Castle" smartphone.


Andorid fans should get ready for the new HTC Qwerty slider, Lancaster. This GSM "consumer social messageing device" should get the under 30 crowd lining up at their local AT&T stores in early August if the rumors are correct and everything falls into place between now and then.

You can read the Palm Eos and HTC Lancaster articles over on Engadget.

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Tuesday, November 4, 2008

BlackBerry Bold Goes on Sale at AT&T



















As promised, the new RIM BlackBery Bold has gone on sale today at AT&T. Of the new corporate-minded device, AT&T writes:
"Get the fastest BlackBerry on the fastest 3G network. The global BlackBerry® Bold™ smartphone is designed to give business professionals both cutting edge functionality and performance under one bold intuitive design. It comes fully-loaded with integrated GPS for AT&T Navigator and Wi-Fi for access at thousands of AT&T hotspots nationwide, including Starbucks. The BlackBerry Bold smartphone has a brilliant color LCD screen for exceptional definition and clarity. Pictures are vibrant and sharp while videos play smoothly and web pages, documents, presentations, and messages come to life with exceptional quality and contrast. Get more speed and more power with the BlackBerry Bold."

The BlackBerry Bold's features include:

  • Half-VGA (480 x 320 at 217 ppi) color display
  • A newly designed full QWERTY keyboard for exceptionally fast and easy typing
  • Built-in GPS and Wi-Fi radios
  • 624 MHz mobile processor
  • More storage — 1 GB on board and up to 16 GB via its microSD/SDHC expansion slot
  • Advanced media player for music, videos and photos
  • 2 megapixel camera with built-in flash, zoom and video recording
  • optimized Web-browsing experience with desktop-style depiction
  • DataViz Documents To Go for editing Word, Excel and PowerPoint files

The complete list of the Bold's features and technical specifications can be found on the AT&T website.

Pricing

The new BlackBerry Bold retails for $549.99 without a contract commitment from AT&T. When you sign up for a 2-year service agreement, the price drops down to $399.99. Additionally, AT&T is offering a $100 mail-in rebate which brings the cost of the device down to $299.99. To take advantage of the mail-in rebate, customers will have to sign up for a $35/month data or messaging plan. That shouldn't be a deal breaker for most customers as a BlackBerry without the data service isn't very useful.

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Monday, November 3, 2008

Briefly Noted: Palm Smartphone Changes

Kris Keilhack over at PalmInfoCenter.com is reporting two Palm product chances.

Treo 750 Nearing End of Life?


The first is that it appears that Palm and AT&T are moving to end-of-life (EOL) the Palm Treo 750. Of the Treo 750, Mr. Keilhack writes:
"Aside from the evergreen Treo 700wx on Verizon, the 750 remains Palm's oldest current smartphone. Replacing the 750 with the new Treo Pro would appear to be a logical move but to date nothing more than rumors have indicated that Palm's flagship device will be appearing in subsidized form on any domestic GSM carrier.

Originally launched in September 2006 with Windows Mobile 5.2, the Treo 750 is now well over two years old. So despite the presence of the WM6 update released last fall, it is beginning to look a bit long in the tooth relative to not only competing handsets but even its newer Windows Mobile-powered Treo sister devices, the Treo 800w and Treo Pro."

Verizon Centro ROM Upgrade


Palm and Verizon have made a free ROM maintenace upgrade available to customers using Verizon-branded Centro smartphones. Writing for PalmInfoCenter, Mr. Keilhack writes:
"Palm is being rather vague on the specific improvements in this update, claiming only: "This software update is a minor tune-up that may improve device usability in certain situations."

Palm customers who are using Verizon branded Centros can learn more about and download the latest ROM update here. Sprint customers received a similar update back in July.

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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

BlackBerry Bold Headed for AT&T on Nov 4th


















In a press release issued earlier today, Research In Motion announced that the new BlackBerry Bold will be launching on AT&T's 3G wireless network on Tuesday, November 4, 2008.

"The BlackBerry Bold smartphone's design and performance live up to its name. The elegant smartphone features a lustrous black exterior, satin chrome-finished frame and stylish, leatherette backplate with a stunning half-VGA (480 x 320 at 217 ppi) color display for eye-popping visuals and a newly designed full QWERTY keyboard for exceptionally fast and easy typing. On the inside, the BlackBerry Bold features built-in GPS and Wi-Fi®, a powerful new 624 MHz mobile processor that provides impressive performance, more storage memory than ever before — 1 GB on board and up to 16 GB via its microSD/SDHC expansion slot — and a rich set of multimedia capabilities, including an advanced media player for music, videos and photos and a 2 megapixel camera with built-in flash, zoom and video recording, as well as an optimized Web-browsing experience with desktop-style depiction."

"The BlackBerry Bold is the best BlackBerry smartphone ever, backed by the nation's fastest 3G network and the hands-down best international coverage of any carrier," said Ralph de la Vega, president and chief executive officer of AT&T Mobility. "The BlackBerry Bold is the complete package, providing customers with an absolutely outstanding mobile experience whether doing e-mail, browsing the Web, viewing streaming video or simply making a phone call. And it is being introduced in the U.S. only from AT&T."

The new BlackBerry Bold will sell for $299 with a qualifying 2-year service agreement that includes voice and data.

Read the full RIM press release...


I have to say that I'm really interested in the BlackBerry Curve, and what can only be it's successor, the Bold. What I like most about them is the hardware keyboard and the navigation ball on the face of the device. Being a long time Palm Treo customer, I really rely on having that hardware Qwerty keyboard. I just can't seem to get used to the soft keyboard that has been implemented on Apple's iPhone and iPod touch. I'm all about the keyboard.

The other feature that I really like is the placement of the trackball. With the older BlackBerry devices that I've used, I really hated the fact that the scroll wheel was always on the right side of the device with me being left handed.

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Thursday, September 18, 2008

AT&T Treo 680 Reaches EOL



The Boy Genius Report has gotten their hands on what appears to the the latest AT&T wireless road map, which shows the Palm Treo 680 reaching End of Life (EOL). The crimson Treo 680 in November, 2006 on Cingular, which was latter gobbled up by AT&T.

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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Weekend Wrap Up

This weekend, Palm made three important moves, not that anyone noticed with iPhonemania 2.0 in full swing.

Electric Blue Centro, Temporary Price Cut

On Friday, Palm introduced a new electric blue Centro on the AT&T wireless network. If you are following along on your scorecards, AT&T now has three colors to choose from: obsidian black, glacier white, and now electric blue. To entice even more people to chose Centro, AT&T has lowered the price to $69.99 when you sign up for a qualifying two-year service agreement. That is great news for anyone looking to jump on the smartphone bandwagon!

You can purchase an AT&T Centro either online from the Palm or AT&T website, or from any AT&T retail outlet. For more details, visit the Palm Centro website.


Sprint Begins Selling the Palm Treo 800w

At long last the new Palm Treo 800w is available! It has a great looking case and offers several new built-in features previously unavailable on any previous Palm smartphone.

Just some of the new features include Microsoft Windows Mobile 6.1; a 320x320 touch screen display, a 2.0MP camera, and built-in Wi-Fi and GPS radios. The new Treo retails for $599, however, when you sign up for a qualifying service plan, after instant and mail-in rebates, the 800w sells for $249.99. A handsome price for what could be a very nice phone.

On Sunday night, Palm has yet to issue a press release or update their website and online store. Look for more details come Monday morning.


Oh Palm, sigh…

Working with AT&T to bring out a new Centro, if only in color, and putting a price cut in place was the right thing to do. And launching the much-anticipated Treo 800w on Sprint was another positive step forward.

Yet, once again, Palm’s marketing department show how inept they are. Launching two new phones and introducing a price cut during the same weekend that Apple was rolling out their new iPhone 3G and iPhone 2.0 software was just poor planning.

John Paczkowski from the D: All Things Digital website, has the perfect quote from Charlie Wolf who is an analyst at Needham & Company. The quote reads:

“They took the wrong day to do it,” said Charlie Wolf, a wireless analyst at Needham & Co. “It’s going to be drowned out by the hoopla around the iPhone.”

I truly hope that Palm learns from this mistake, and doesn’t start talking publicly about their Palm OS II/Nova plans and/or devices during the same week that Apple is rolling out new products at MacWorld Expo in San Francisco come January 2009. Palm needs to get out in front of Apple, or get behind them. Just don’t go toe-to-toe with them.

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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Palm Introduces the AT&T Centro


Palm has officially taken the wraps off of the rumored white AT&T Palm Centro consumer-oriented smartphone.

With the exception of the new GSM cellular radio and AT&T specific software, such as Push To Talk, the new GSM AT&T Centro is expected to be very similar in product specifications as the previously release Centro smartphones from rival wireless carrier Sprint and the recently announced unlocked GSM Centro that will begin selling across Europe shortly.
"Centro offers customers more choices to stay in touch with friends, family and co-workers by using voice, text messaging, instant messaging, e-mail or the Web. Featuring a color touch-screen and full QWERTY keyboard, Centro is the first Palm OS® product to launch with AT&T services, such as XM Radio Mobile, Push to Talk and MusicID."

"The demand for crossover devices is skyrocketing, and the Centro hits a sweet spot for many customers looking for a QWERTY device with a solid suite of messaging and multimedia features," said Michael Woodward, vice president, Business Mobility Products for AT&T's wireless unit. "At a great price that can be coupled with a variety of AT&T's messaging and data options, we are thrilled to offer Centro to our 70.1 million customers."

"Centro offers a simple way for customers to stay connected to the people who are important to them while better managing their increasingly hectic lifestyles, all at the price of a traditional mobile phone," said Brodie Keast, senior vice president of Marketing for Palm, Inc."

The AT&T Centro will sell for $99 with a new two-year service agreement. It is expected to sell for $399 without a service agreement. According to today's press release, there will be an obsidian black edition of the AT&T Centro which is expected to begin shipping in about four weeks. The glacial white Centro goes on sale today at AT&T retail outlets and online at www.att.com and the Palm online store. AT&T's unlimited data plan has been priced at $30 a month in addition to their standard voice and messaging plans.

Read the full Palm press release...

Update:

The Palm Centro website has been updated to include the AT&T Centro product specifications along side the Sprint Centro specifications.

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