Friday, 13 March 2009

Review: Palm Treo Pro

As I mentioned in my previous post, I use a Palm Treo Pro for work purposes. I chose this phone for a very specific reason: we use an Alcatel/Lucent phone system and there are various integration technologies available (for both Windows Mobile and the Nokia Symbian OS) that I want to test and use in a production environment.

Having used the Treo 750 to great effect in my previous job, I hoped the new iteration would prove just as useful. Unfortunately I find this phone to be cumbersome and annoying at times - I will elaborate of course.

Visually the Treo Pro is slimmer and slightly smaller than the Treo 750 which is nice - the 750 was a pocketful by itself, whereas the Pro is slim enough to squeeze in with my keys. The screen is large and well lit and accuracy with the stylus has not been an issue. The touch screen is sensitive but not overly so and is quite responsive to the fingernail tap. Palm have added a wireless on/off switch on the side which I find to be redundant (you may not). I don't use the phone on our wireless network enough yet to find it to be wonderfully handy.

OK, here's the roundup:

  • Windows Mobile operating system allows for excellent integration with Microsoft products
  • Browser is excellent
  • Many different methods of connectivity - bluetooth, 802.11 etc
  • Good call quality
  • Multimedia playback is pretty good
  • Threaded SMS/MMS - I loved this feature on the 750 and continue to love it on this device
  • Crappy message tones (this can be fixed I know)
  • Phone has locked up several times and requires the battery to be removed to get it to work again
  • Keys on the QWERTY keyboard are hard to use quickly and easily
  • Unlocking the phone during a call to use handsfree is something I'm yet to master
  • Battery life is not impressive
  • Black case gets grubby looking quite quickly
  • Ringtones are soft, even when turned up to maximum value
All in all, it's quite reasonable, apart from my gripes above. I use it quite extensively to log work, fiddle with my calendar and email and it is adequate for all of those things. I think that some of the issues are to be placed at the operating system's door rather than the Palm hardware. It does seem to be reasonable hardware and the phone is much more compact than it's predecessor. I look forward to updating this review once I play with more of the features it has and the capabilities it has with the excellent Alcatel/Lucent phone system we have. Stay tuned!

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