What the Palm Pre Stole from the iPhone... and What the iPhone Should Steal From the Pre

As I've said many times before on TiPb, I'm a Palm guy going back to the Palm V, and Treo guy going back to the Treo 600. When Palm essentially abandoned that user-base (see my Palm Treo Pro Round Robin video and review) a few years back, I abandoned them and dove headlong into the iPhone (and now the iPhone 3G).

I still have a very warm spot in my heart for Palm, however, their innovation in the smartphone space, and their focus on zen-like user experience. So, when Palm announced their new WebOS platform and premiered their new Pre handset at CES (see our new baby sibling site PreCentral.net for all the details and a massive hands-on video), I was more than just a little ecstatic. I won't lie, it's the first post-iPhone device that's caught my attention.

Don't get me wrong, I still fear for Palm -- the market is much more crowded than it was when they helped create it, and for all the problems WebOS and the Pre solve, they bring their own set to the table. However, watching the Palm Keynote fro CES I, presented by former Apple iPod father Jon Rubinstein and Palm founder Ed Colligan, two things stood really stood out for me:

  • What Palm outright stole from the iPhone and put in the Pre
  • And what Apple should immediate steal from Palm and put into the next iPhone OS.

We'll get into both, after the break.

What the Palm Pre Stole From the iPhone

First, stole is exactly the right word. No, I'm not talking about Rubinstein's verbiage (you can copy a Jobs script, but not the delivery, b'okay?) Feature for feature -- gesture for gesture -- the former Apple team headed now by Rubenstein as Palm straight up jacked whole swathes of iPhone functionality to a degree that I'm pretty much certain Apple's lawyers are drafting up whole heaps of infringement claims against them for all those patents Steve Jobs mentioned during his first iPhone introduction back at Macworld. Let's take a look...

Form Factor

Okay, an iClone is an iClone, and many would argue Apple didn't invent the singular black slab that is the iPhone's now iconic shape. Many would also argue there are only so many ways to make a full-screen, touch-screen device. Fair enough. But from that full, touch screen to the singular center button at the bottom, degree of rounded-ness not withstanding, we'll call an iClone an iClone when we see it.

Specs

Not only does the Pre look like the iPhone, it's built like the iPhone. It's almost like the iPhone feature set was lined up and checked off one by one: 320x480 capacitive touch screen -- check. Accelerometer, ambient light, and proximity sensors -- check. While the package is smaller in its closed state, and has been amped up (hello A2DP stereo Blue Tooth!), the mold from which it was cast is still patently obvious.

The Dock

The original Palm PDA platform had a static, lower tier application launcher space, if anyone remembers that platform anymore, but it was interrupted by the stylus input bad, and later hard-buttons took its place. With the Pre, however, Palm has taken a step sideways into the iPhone launcher paradigm. You get five buttons instead of four, and they focus on Palm's nouveau Pillars of PIM -- Phone, Contacts, Email, Calendar, and... up arrow (I'm guess a way to launch more options).

Real-World UI Interactions

It was amazing, back at Macworld 2007, to watch Steve Jobs effortlessly flick through a list of contacts and see them bounce with virtual elasticity when they reached their end. This kind of intuitive visual cuing is invaluable to the user experience. No wonder Palm copied it almost exactly. Flick through the Pre contacts, same capacitive acceleration, same elastic bounce back.

Likewise panels zoom in and zoom out, and slide over each other, just like with the iPhone, to give a sense of stacking and information depth.

Turn the Palm Pre and not only does the accelerometer rotate the screen, it does so with the same animation as the iPhone. No smash cuts like other handsets here.

Multi-touch

This is the big one, and the one I think have Cupertino's lawyers revving up their engines. Rumor has it that other post-iPhone capacitive handsets were supposed to ship with multi-touch, but fear of Apple's patents ultimately made them reconsider that functionality. The Palm Pre looks to have done no such reconsideration. Witness: pinch to zoom, double tap to focus, flick to scroll.

It's not just that they used multi-touch, they used the exact same gestures the iPhone already used to do it.

WebKit

Apple's open source web rendering engine, WebKit (based on the Linux Konquerer technology) doesn't have a huge desktop browser share outside of the Mac, but it's positively pwning the mobile space. Nokia uses it, Google's Android uses it, (some think Microsoft should dump Internet Explorer 6(!) for Mobile and use it!), and now the Palm Pre uses it as well.

What the iPhone Should Immediately Steal from the Palm Pre

What's more important than dwelling on what the Palm Pre stole from the iPhone is what Palm did to extend, and yes, improve upon it. Several of these improvements are so compelling, Apple immediately needs to take a little vengeance on Palm and steal them right back! Which ones?

Multitasking "Cards"

One of the most impressive features shown off in the Palm Pre demo was the concept of stacked cards, where the center button could "zoom out" and give a real-time, updated view of what was happening on other open applications. The iPhone needs this badly. Not multitasking third party apps will increasingly be seen as a limitation on the iPhone, but RIM or Windows Mobile style Task management is likewise a non-starter.

Luckily, the iPhone already has 2 existing metaphors for this. First and most closely resembling the Palm Pre cards are the Mobile Safari "tabs". Tap the tab button and the current web page zooms out and you see all open tabs. Pick the tab you want, it zooms in full screen. This could easily be adapted to multi-tasking applications.

Frankly, however, I'm not sure its good enough for the iPhone. The second metaphor, CoverFlow, might just be. We don't know what's driving the Palm Pre under the hood, but we know the iPhone has awesome OpenGL and PowerVR graphics that just beg for a drool-inducing task-switching implementation. Flick to change between your apps as easily as you do your albums in iTunes.

To close an app, as the Pre does with an upward throw-away flick, Mobile Safari Tab "X" buttons could be a solution, as could the flick-away, but I'm not sure how necessary that is. In an ideal world, iPhone OS X would transparently handle memory in the background, "sleeping" (saving state) what hasn't been used or isn't prioritized as needed.

As to the reorganization ability of the Pre task manager, I'm not convinced you need it in a switching system as fast as capacitive flicking.

Short of a Mac-inspired Expose for the iPhone, CoverFlow app switching would be killer.

And what better, easier, and more elegant way to implement it than just hitting the Home button in Landscape mode?

Merging the Cloud

Palm made a big deal about the Pre being built from the web up, and it sort of (and it no doubt increasingly is) a big deal. Since we're not sure what kind of media capabilities the Pre will have, the need to cloud-manage 1GB+ movie files may not be a worry to them the way it certainly is to the iPhone, but for PIM data did what they've always done -- nailed it.

Pre hooks into popular cloud data stores, Exchange, Gmail, and Facebook (and perhaps others) and merges all your data behind the scenes to present you with a single handheld gateway -- a unified view. Exchange contacts seamlessly integrated with the matching picture from your Facebook friend was the example given, and it's a game-changing one. Likewise, Pre combines together IM and SMS into a single, person-centric threaded conversation.

Tying in IM, Twitter, and people's own email address cards create something close to what I've always been asking for -- an application that unifies and HIDES all the various pipes away from the user.

Chad has mentioned several times that Apple has all sorts of Mobile iChat patents floating around. Can we get those put to use?

This is the type of flawless user experience both Palm and Apple are famous for. Palm is giving it to us first on the mobile platform. Fine. Apple, give it to us next.

(And we won't even get into what might happen if Apple leverages their new iPhoto '09 Faces (facial recognition) and Places (geotagging) technology into this paradigm!)

Status

On the Mac, if you have iChat open and you receive an email from someone who's also an iChat buddy, their availability status is shown to you. Palm's Pre works in a similar manner, showing you IM status in the email app. Sadly, the iPhone currently doesn't do this. It should. Dieter has asked for it repeatedly and he's right. Even though iPhone apps like Pinger do a great job aggregating status, there's no reason it shouldn't become ubiquitous throughout a mobile experience. And there's every reason it should.

As mentioned before, the user interface lines between SMS, Twitter, IM, etc., and even email are and should be blurring, and a way to not only manage all those communication pipes, but seamlessly leverage them as well, is increasingly becoming a necessity for connected users.

Auto-Save

Palm has always "just worked" when it came to saving state of data. Add a contact and no matter how complete or incomplete, Palm has just saved that state of the data on the device and for sync. With the Pre they've taken it a step further and saved state right back to the cloud as well.

The iPhone, by contrast, wants you to confirm the save with a button tap. This is okay to prevent fragmentary entries from polluting your pristine data store, but in the real world it's just annoying. If you start entering a calendar event, and you suddenly and urgently need to go into a different app (something that happens in the real world), you shouldn't have to worry about losing whatever data you've entered, or having to start over.

Just like Palm, and like Apple already does in Apps like iMovie, data should just be saved on exit as-is, and synced back to the cloud or local machine, also as is. It's simply a better, more robust user experience.

Keyboard Launcher

Familiar not only to everyone who's ever used a Treo, Vista Search, or Mac Spotlight, but truly understood by anyone who's become a QuickSilver (or similar application launcher) user, sometimes typing is just the fastest way to reach the data you want. The Pre does a great, Spotlight-esque job of quickly parsing keystrokes into local and cloud search results, and the iPhone should be able to leverage Apple's Spotlight just as powerfully.

Sure, the Pre has a hard keyboard, which is the last thing I want on an iPhone (remember -- at least for me -- the era of hard keyboards is over!). So what to do?

Stick a Spotlight icon on the Home Screen, what else? Okay, sure, make up something fun... Let me shake on the Home Screen to bring up a Spotlight optimized keyboard. Shake is used in other apps to do neat things, leverage it to let me do killer search as well. Shake, type, boom! (I kid, a little, see quickie mock-up pick).

Either way give me rapid search access into contacts, events, files (yes, give me a single, multi-app accessible file storage bin so I can get some Office action going -- but more on that in a future article), and the option to shoot off into CalDAV, CardDAV, WebDAV (iDisk), or general Web searches.

Conclusion

We didn't touch on everything, including the swiped App Store come App Catalog, or the innovative non-modal notification system, but hopefully this gives some idea of our ideas on where the iPhone brought the smartphone space, where the Pre has taken killer features from that, and what Apple could do to take some killer features of the Pre right back.

But what are your ideas? Anything from the Pre (or other post-iPhone smartphones) YOU think Apples needs to immediately integrate into iPhone OS 3.0?

Have something to say about this story? Share your comments below! Need help with something else? Submit your question!

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, Vector, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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What the Palm Pre Stole from the iPhone... and What the iPhone Should Steal From the Pre

102 Comments

I've been looking at pictures and videos of the PRE All morning... i gotta say it looks like an amazing device and it will by far beat the iPhone in features... and i'm an iPhone lover saying that. I'm certainly not a fanboy.. but i'm a lover of gadgets.. and i have to say Hats off to PALM for this device...
I am hoping and waiting to see what Apple will do in result of this....
I think i can speak for the rest of the iPhone community in saying that we have been waiting for a very long time now... patiently...

Patenting multi-touch is like patenting masturbation (runs to the patent office to patent masturbation so I can sue everyone and become rich!!!). Seriously though, yea, Apple thought of it and they obviously deserve some credit, but everything is going touch-screen nowadays and everyone is going to be doing it the same way. Heck, I have a remote for my TV that is like 10 years old that scrolls exactly like the iPhone does. Bah. Good for RIM!

Nice review.
I saw some clips and was very impressed and jealous of some of the features. I would not leave/cancel my contract for the PRE(like i did for the iphone) especially to go back to SPRINT- worst customer service EVER.
I am very pleased to see a device that can compete with the Iphone. The Iphone is awesome but it can be so much better.... hopefully this will be enough incentive for APPLE to stop slacking step up to the plate and put out a better device- maybe one with copy and paste.

@ANA
I read a post somewhere saying that the Pre could be coming to ATT 3 months after the sprint release.
Which is good. but yes also even more incentive for Apple to step up there game since it's coming to ATT.
If in fact it does come to ATT i will buy the Pre and certainly use it. Unless Apple comes out with an announcement of something better.

Meh, its too late for Palm IMO. They formed an image in the customer's mind and it will take way more than a featured phone to change it.
Besides, by the time this will be out (ex. after all the usual delays), it will be 2013.

@IPM
If my Iphone was not jailbroken(which has made my iphone experience a million times better)......i would switch over to the PRE in a heartbeat if it were offered to ATT. I am not loyal to APPLE( def not a "fanboy/girl") i'm loyal to the better product. Either way this is good competition and the more there is of it the better products we get :0)

Rene -- Great job as always.
One thing I wish Apple would do (& I believe this is available if you jailbreak) is create a notification/today screen. When I used WinMo, I could wake the device (without unlocking it) and quickly see if I missed any calls/e-mails/texts, etc.
Just imagine, you hit either the sleep/wake button or the home button, and without having to 'slide to unlock,' at a glance you are able to see all those notifications on a single screen. THAT would be killer. PLEASE APPLE, make this happen.
The other thing is, why can't iTunes handle file syncing? When you tether to iTunes, you can sync music, videos, calendar & contact info, photos, etc. Why not allow for file syncing such that the files are on your device and available to the viewer. This would be much easier than a 3rd-party app such as Air Sharing (which I use) which requires the user to sync via Wi-Fi.
And as Dieter pointed out in the Treo Cast, it makes more sense to engineer the device to handle multi-tasking rather than Apple's "brute force" method of simply not allowing it.
Removable Battery? No comment.

If palm wanted to be make a stand in the market the phone needs to come out in the next month. By the time the Pre comes out, apple will have announced or released their new phone or OS to compete. Palm showed their hand pre maturely.

Wait one second there...
The iPhone stole what from Palm?
- internal space was the Palm LifeDrive
- basic UI was the Palm OS launcher
- the icons at the bottom of the screen on the iPhone came after the Treo 680's phone launcher
Just like the Pre took and tweaked, so did Apple with the iPhone. However, we don't hear Apple coming back and saying "yea, we took bits and pieces from 'x' system because it worked best for us. Then we tweaked it."
A little journalistic balance perphaps?

@ ARJWright
Ever hear of the Apple Newton. Sort pre PALM if I remember correctly.
By the way Palm was formed primarily by a bunch of ex Apple employees and guess who helped design the Pre... why even more ex Apple employees. Wow those Apple people sure get around to designing cool stuff.

The iPhone needs to steal some ideas from the blackberry as well. The most glaring being that, on the iphone, when i want to make a phone call, i have to either dial numbers on the keypad or go into contacts. This is very slow and problematic when driving.
On the blackberry, there is one dial screen and the device recognizes whether you are typing a name from your address book or number, and will adjust accordingly. the Iphone needs this ASAP.

" Whaaa, why doesn't the iPhone have THIS? Why doesn't the iPhone have THAT?"
Uhhh.... maybe because they were a bit busy REVOLUTIONIZING the mobile phone industry (along with all the other amazing products and software they have going on at the same time).
These other companies make one thing - their lousy phones... and they STILL can't innovate. I didn't hear any whining and complaining a few years ago about why Apple wasn't making it's own mobile phone with a touchscreen keyboard during the time they were working on it... because no one knew... the same way no one knows what they're working on NOW.
It's all coming, people... It's a fairly new device, for godsake.

That wasn't directed toward you, Rene... but toward all the copy/paste, etc. people.
Good article.

@8 - its called QuickGold - awesome jailbreak app that Apple should include - tap the home key and start typing...app names, contact names, emails, etc. There's even a "quicklaunch" bar of your last 5 or 6 launched items.
@19 - I agree!! I finally broke down and bought a GolfGPS app for my iPhone, I would love, love, love to have TomTom or even Mio software on the my phone.

@Steve
IMO it's been too long. The fact that they still don't have copy and paste after two yrs( a feature the simplest of phones have)is embarrassing. No excuses.

@ANA: Perhaps the reason other phones have it is BECAUSE they are the "simplest" of phones and have little else. How long did Apple spend on the touchscreen and UI that we all love? Did that take too long?
Maybe Apple should have just developed a "simple" phone like everyone else and had copy/paste on it so people wouldn't gripe. But I'm sure glad they didn't.

Actually the Pre is a good name for it... nice, simple, and one people will actually remember. iPhone works great for Apple since they branded "i" in front of everything and made it their own; when you see iSomething the first thought is "is it from Apple"?
You got the Palm Pro... why not the Pre. :)

@Steve
I agree with you 100%... all this and more is coming to iPhone. Steve will exact vengeance on those that left Apple for Palm by trumping the Pre in almost every regard; just wait for software 3.0.
BTW, my prediction: no new iPhone 3G refresh in June, but software 3.0 instead... well, maybe that iPhone Nano thing too :-)

The APPs game is just about over & the iphone is winning.
Any other entry to this field must have better apps then just a few niceties.
The PRE has two years of market lag & can only hope to hang unto 4th place in this crowded field below the 2 front runners (iPhone & Blackberry).
The PRE is a nice prelude to next generations of the iPhone.
Switch? Naaww.
The battle is for those undecided..and the doors have opened wide for the iphone and closing fast to newcomers.
Unless a new device has thought input & control, as well as speech recognition for everything with 100,000 fresh apps.
The battl

@Steve
LOL don't get your panties up in a bunch.
My point is they could have implemented that SIMPLE feature in a software update at least -by now-. Theres nothing wrong with expecting the simplest of features on a "Revolutionary" phone that we/I need.
@ LOZ
Not sure how it works but it does have it.

Both phones need to be able to take videos. If the Pre has copy/paste and Office (which it will) then we might be asking if the next iphone is a "Pre Killer".

Palm needs to be careful the last two iPhone killers flopped all I hear from them is wait till the g2 and well a new update is coming for my storm. If apple would allow the iPhone to be more open it would rule all. I tried using my iPhone for a day non jailbroken it was horrid.

I am a former Palm (I, III, V), then Treo, then Treo WinMo, now iPhone user. I loved Palm but their foray into WinMo just tarnished their reputation in my eyes. I know it should be not their total fault but hey, their name is on the device.
I have become addicted to my iPhone and it has become much more than a phone device (voice calling is only 20% or less of my iPhone activities these days) so maybe I don't miss the 'simple' things mentioned above like full contact/IM/SMS/Email integration. Just give me a little multitasking and some background notification and I won't even complain too much about the copy paste.
Nevertheless, I really worry that it may be too late for Palm, a once innovative market moving company. The developers are going to move to iPhone, Android, and BBerry (of course BBerry with all the easy corporate account biz app dollars waiting). Symbian is even struggling (US centric view, sorry). Motorola going all Android. I agree with above posts that Pre is going to fight for fourth place and when developer network and application distribution is also responsible for a phones success in the marketplace it will be too much to overcome. (especially with the other competitors for fourth place being MSFT and NOK)
But kudos for not going down without a fight! good luck Palm.

  • mark

As iPhone users, I don't see any reason we can't all acknowledge that Palm probably has a winner on their hands. It's a great looking device. The software looks phenomenal. And it offfers something to power users that the iPhone does not: a physical keyboard and a removable battery.
Also, it is in OUR best interest for Palm to succeed with this new phone, because it will push Apple to update and improve the iPhone platform (something they are probably already doing anyway).
Even if the Pre is a runaway success, I still plan on sticking with the iPhone. I like the eco-system that Apple has created and the ease with which I can put any and all the music that I want on to the device via iTunes.
There are only so many original ideas that can be applied to making a good smartphone, and Pre stole a little from everyone and developed what looks to be a winner. I switched over from WinMo about 5 months ago. Frankly however, I would love to see Microsoft innovate and improve WinMo so that it, too, offers an inviting option. The more that WinMo, BB, and Palm do to innovate, the more it's going to help the iPhone platform in the long run.
Just my 2 cents. Congratulations Palm, but as nice as your device appears to be, I'm sticking with Apple.

Not that I would even THINK of ever buying one of these... but does this thing even sync with Mac Address Book? iCal? iTunes? MobileMe? Or is it yet another one of countless devices that don't acknowledge the existence of Mac users causing me to become an even angrier Apple fanboy/snob than I already have been for years?
If not, it's just more junk.

I can hardly wait for Apple to take the Palm phone apart and if they find patent infringements, sue them.
I had many Palm PDAs and still have one left, but the company was run so poorly and the software became outdated and buggy. I really wished then, that they just go out of business. Now they have to steel, to imitate, but still unable to create competitive products and manage on their own. I got no respect left for Palm.

First of all Palm's have always synced with Apple's but to just say that everything must work with Apple OSX is just not fair. But Palm does a good job, and if the cloud deal works, it will be amazing.

I sweep the floors in Cupertino and I overhead some guys in the bathroom the other day talking about the next phone not needing cut and paste because it will read your mind. Its quite revolutionary. It also puts the touchscreen/hard keyboard debate to bed since neither will be needed as so long as you are touching it, it will type what you are thinking.
I dont think the Pre will be able to copy it since Apple has copyrighted brain to phone telepathy.

@Ana: I completely agree. I too love my Iphone but admit it can be/should have been a lot better by now.
I think this pretty much guarantee's APPLE will be puting out a better software update after this....which is exciting. Enough Iphoto updates i say.
@Steve: Being a snob is something to be proud of
@Steve Jobs: ha.

Hmmm interesting... and the mouse was an original idea that Apple had? Or did they steal it.... eeerrr borrow it from PARC???

Articles like this reveal the mass public ignorance of touch and handheld history.
Multitouch, pinch, scrolling, docks, form factor, sliding windows, icon grid, etc all date from the 1980s and early 90s.
The only new thing I saw from Apple, was the rebound at scrolling edges, and I'd bet there are prior examples of that.

The iPhone, while kind of cool, wasn't all that revolutionary. Think about it - Palm and RIM had GUI smartphones before Apple. Outside of the accelerometer, a Palm Centro or Blackberry can do everything and iPhone can do. Seriously look at the smartphones that are out there and tell me what is so awesome about the iPhone...
What Apple has done is created a fanbase of people who will only buy Apple products. It's like a cult.

@Kevin:
We're not ignorant. We just don't care about the sh*tty prehistoric Burger King cash register touch history of the past. Apple is an innovator and a trend-setter. Otherwise Palm would've used the technology before Apple if it were that easy.

Sorry, the Pre gets a lot right that the iPhone doesn't. It's about usability, folks. Context: Mac user for 20 years, Palm and Treo user 'til 6 months ago, on iPhone now. Lack of Cut/Copy/Paste (and ToDos, Memos/Notes) still unbelievable. Of course, gotta see if the Pre has a good phone, but I'd switch in a heartbeat, as it stands. Definitely a wake up call for Apple, hope they don't allow their hubris to stand in the way of fixing the no-brainers.

Steal?! ...
Everyone "steals" ideas from others ... gimme a break!
Palm has come-up with a fantastic product regardless of where their ideas came from. Palm didn't steal, they improved upon what Apple did ... beat them at their own game.

Regarding who stole what from who, let's just remember where the original idea for a web-enabled touch-screen phone with built in media capabilities came from (Palm).
However, Apple did a very sensible thing with the iPhone (and IMHO the only thing they actually deserve credit for), and that was to take the mystique away from smart-phones by REMOVING some functionality.
People simply didn't "get it" with the Treo, because there were a bunch of crazy settings and customization options. In some ways, all windows mobile devices are TOO customizable (the Treo 700 series has 3 pages of settings options, and it isn't immediately clear where you go to change what). Apple got rid of a lot of the "fluff", because they realized that the average consumer really doesn't care about the color of the scroll bars, or the finer points of screen resolution and fonts, or the management of memory settings. They just want a phone that works, with minimal fluff to distract from actual functionality.
As a long-time Palm user I thought I would not be able to give up all of the "tweakability" of the Treo, but after just one month on the iPhone, I don't miss it at all.
Regarding what the second round of Palm-->iPhone technology copying should include...

  • A2DP bluetooth
  • Support for sync over bluetooth
  • Removable memory
  • Removable battery
  • File management system
  • Cordless charging
  • Louder speaker

@steve: i think your iPhone is so far up your a$$, you've gone blind. I know you like the vibrate feature but pleae pull it out and dont speak down to other posters who profer their opinions or cite facts and historical record.
Makes you further the stereotype of whiny little fanboy b!tch. Its just a phone - regardless of how revolutionary you think it is. Apple is just a better marketer and packager than any other company.
iFart has basically put the woopy cushion industry out of business. That true innovation.

I think the most plausible copying is the UI.
It is almost laughable to think "spec" as something can be copied. The 320x480 resolution showed up on Palm PDA way before any smart phone used it. PalmOS supported 320x480 for a very long time. The sensor features are not Apple's technology.
As for the dock, the idea of having direct app assess started from Palm. They were hard buttons, but neverthless, the purpose are the same.

@steve
Apple maybe a trend-setter, so does Paris Hilton. It does not make Apple the owner of those ideas or technology.

@ Jason: i dont think they have a release date yet. The CEO of my company asked me to check into the release date and i couldn't find one our rep does not know either.
@ ksom: Paris Hilton is not a trend setter.
I feel the love in the room.

@Steve Jobs: I'm afraid you're far out-numbered. :roll:
@ksom: Well, then... Paris Hilton is smarter than YOU. :lol:

Apple did NOT patent multitouch software! They were smart, however, and ran to get patents for its use on a communication device. Multitouch has been around since the 80's. Both Microsoft & Jeff Han debuted working applications years before the iPhone. Han's interface, shown at the TED conference in 2005) is EXACTLY Apple's interface of pinch zooming in & out, scrolling through menus and moving files around. Apple certainly applied it well and certainly made it pretty.
Eventually, pretty won't be enough. Apple does not have the market share on phones. There are far more PDA devices out there running Windows Mobile or even the Palm OS than there are iPhones. (No matter what their ads say.)
What Apple needs to concentrate on is how they can make their users and the developers happy. The iPhone currently is a gadget device. There are few apps that are usable on the business end. The biggest reasons corporations supply Treos & Blackberries are for the email compatibility and for the legacy mobile software that are used.
We as users should be glad that there might be a device that challenges the iPhone. Palm, Apple, RIM and other phone manufacturer's will have the ability to bring us better devices, better usability, better software applications and force the phone carriers to change their pricing & business models.
Bring on the Pre!

In regards to copy paste, I am beginning to wonder if apple is having issues implenting such a feature. For 2 reasons:
1) Clipboard type feature requires a service that runs on low level access so that all apps have access. I don't know if it's just me but that's dangerous to integrity, which is another reason while iphone sdk becomes limited as they have consider the harms to the OS. Also why some apps aren't allowed to make it to the app store. Think what happens when you get security flaws in a desktop broswer, all your data is at risk. Not saying safari is perfect but they have the resources to keep it updated and secure where as we let a 3rd party into system and the browser has flaws all your personal details could be a risk.
2) what gesture should be used to access clipboard?

I also like the idea of home screen type thing as I had a winmo phone and was super easy to get email txt and voicemail counts. However iPhone somewhat has this with txt and missed calls. Maybe apple will allow a way for apps to interact. Main issue with this is keeping those services running in background. This is what killed winmo it's sad you need a taskmanager for closing out a app. I think iphone could use one as a tool for hoggish apps. I like the flick idea for moving between apps but still means background tasks and until we get a pumped cpu and upgradeable components it's just not feasible.

@iPhoneMilk
The Pre is NOT coming to ATT, Sprint has full exclusivity. Palm said the next version will be a Euro GSM world-ready device launched in regions Sprint does not have service. Other words, Sprint will be the only American carrier with the their branding on the American version.

I'm tired of this. Anytime a new device comes out everyone's screaming "look how they stole ideas from Apple".
No-one gave a crap on desktop PCs, now everybody seems to actually give a gread deal on phones?
How about an article about what Apple originally stole from Palm?
How about Palm is trying (and probably succeded) to make a smartphone rather than an iPod with a phone and a browser?
And oh yeah... Palm devices did support videos in native format back then... just so you know they didn't just make killer PIM apps.

@LOZ 22: I believe I read somewhere that the copy paste is accomplished by holding one finger on the gesture area while at the same time selecting the text with another finger. Sounds simple enough, although maybe not while driving... :)
General reply... Been with Sprint since 1997. Bought an iPhone 3G on launch day, LOVE it!!! I finally got fed up with Sprint and did an early term last month (contract would have been up in 07/09). I will, however, go back to Sprint for this phone. The main reason (aside from the phone itself) is the fact that I can get unlimited everything for $99.99 from them, where it costs $160 from AT&T ($100 talk + $20 text + $30 data + $10 navigation (not even available for iPhone, obviously, so... I guess "everything" on iPhone would be $150)). I may actually buy an iPod Touch and set it up to share my VZW USB modem internet connection through my macbook, thereby continuing with most features and apps that I already have on my iPhone, but having no phone (or accompanying phone bill).

Give me the cover flow app switcher. While in the home screen , turn the phone horizontally and bam, cover flow app switcher.
Apple needs the search feature in SMS and email. A general spotlight does come I handy. On my blackjack II , I rarely went into my contacts to call someone , I typed their name and pressed the call button. Which brings me to how many things I need to go through to call one person on the iPhone.
Also, the PNS is just over due. It's crazy how the iphone is considered to be the worlds most advance mobile platform yet it can't tell me when I get an aim message when I do. Along with that , they might bring iChat the iPhone when they get the PNS right and ready.
I think apple just does not want to make the iPhone just like the OS X platform. They want to keep it seperate so they won't kill sales.

Copy paste is done holding the red button from the keyboard and then selecting the text you wish to copy. Then you hit menu in the left corner and hit copy. Then in the program you want you hit menu paste. There is alot of videos in youtube about palm pre. Watch the full press conference and you get to see alot of the iPhone killer stuff in action :D

To be quite honest and fair, the HTC Touch, Touch Dual, Touch Cruise, most of which, specifically the HTC Touch were debuted well before the iPhone. Also, let's not forget that the HTC Touch, also originally had a large button on the bottom of the phone. So to say that this would be a direct iClone simply because of it having a full touch sensitive screen and a button on the bottom would be out of bounds. Further, lets not forget that Palm PDA's really were the most well developed full touch sensitive screen, well before the time of iPhone. Now, in terms of form, the arguments heard time and again are incite-fully inaccurate. What would be more appropriately accurate would be the rubber band bouncing of the web browser and etc. So, unless its a HiPhone, of those other cheap Chinese knock-offs that literally take the design queue of the iPhone in attempts to garner black market power, the iClone statements ( which some can argue immediately insults the product and unduly declares it a knock-off) should be reserved for more appropriate comparisons, such as software. (Which, by the way, Palm also effectively deployed in the Pilots such as T3).
As for me though, i love my iPhone, but I think it is fantastic to see real competition between submarkets (QWERTY, touch, smart, and not so smart) of the cellphone industry.
Laissez Faire

I like the iphone. AT&T's service is the problem. It's not nearly as good for me as Sprint's service was which I had for 9 years. The last 3 years with them was awesome. I got service everywhere I went in the US. Worked great in my apartment, which ATT service is lacking.
The plus side of the iphone is the excellent syncing to my macintosh. It is never a problem. My Palm Treo 700 was a problem for me to sync, even with Missing Sync, once I upgraded my OS to Leopard.
So, in essence, I'm happy with the iPhone, but would be happier if AT&T improves their service. When sitting in the same spot at work all day long, my signal goes in and out from 3G to Edge and back the whole time I'm there. Why should this happen in NYC?
The Palm Pre looks like a beautiful device. If Sprint had something like this a year ago, I'd have stuck with them providing of course it syncs perfectly with my macintosh computer. For the time being, I'm sticking with the iphone.

what truly irritates me about the iphone/ipod touch is the crappy "backup" offered by itunes. It only backs up your settings. Any music, video, playlists etc is lost. So if you're like me and sync with multiple pcs (home & office) or have playlists you create on the go which aren't autosynced, you lose it all when you have to replace your iphone when you say, accidentally drop it or it just breaks. This really, really needs to be fixed. Why pray-tell can't itunes back up my playlists unless I auto sync?

It's a Done Deal. Apple took to long to add certain features that their customers I'm sure had asked for after these long years. Figuring that they would always be on top of their competition, their guard was dropped alowing and underdog to certianly rob them blind. Im sure apple scientist were selling their secrets away knowing and anticipating apples lack of speed for a solid upgrade. We call them "penny pinchers". They make customers spend good money for only menial upgraded gadgets. It's About time someone stepped up for the challenge.

Hi - I just wanted to say how impressed I am with the level of conversation. I fully expected huge Palm bashing, and outside of one unnamed Steve guy it looks like the fanboys are saying what I feel - competition promotes excellence. Kudos to Apple, kudos to Palm, and kudos to those civil enough to realize this.
Good day to you all.

I think apple just does not want to make the iPhone just like the OS X platform. They want to keep it seperate so they won’t kill sales.

Im not exactly sure how you would say the palm pre stole the iphones 'form factor' its contours are completely different and it opens up with a slide out keyboard...you might as well call the HTC mogul an iClone because it's rectangular shape is more similar with a center button.
and multi-touch?? so what if the gestures are the same...how would anyone else have done multi touch to zoom in?? it just makes intuitive sense to spread ur fingers apart on a screen..

It’s a Done Deal. Apple took to long to add certain features that their customers I’m sure had asked for after these long years. Figuring that they would always be on top of their competition, their guard was dropped alowing and underdog to certianly rob them blind. Im sure apple scientist were selling their secrets away knowing and anticipating apples lack of speed for a solid upgrade. We call them “penny pinchers”. They make customers spend good money for only menial upgraded gadgets. It’s About time someone stepped up for the challenge.

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