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back to article iPhone v Pre - the celebrity smartphone deathmatch

Two top-of-the-line smartphones were released in June: the Palm Pre and the iPhone 3GS. If you're eyeing them, you'll have to choose one or the other - no one in their right mind owns more than one smartphone. So which one is worthy of your pocket or purse? To answer this question - and since it can be easily argued that I'm not …

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Contact/Calendar sync?

I have a Touch, a TX and a cell phone and would love to combine them.

Thing that stops me from getting the iphone is the complete inability to sync calendar and contacts with any programs I actually use. No outlook here, no Mac, so much for syncing to the ipod. Yes there are kludges, I eventually got my calendar over via Google and some bridges. Contacts no chance.

So what's the story for the Pre? Is there hope there?

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@Danny

If you're using IMAP for mobile Exchange access, you're doing it wrong...

ActiveSync config on an iPhone is a snap. I don't know what the Pre can and can't do. I agree, standing up BES is simply a tax we're not willing to pay for our 14,000 users.

Now, if you;re in an environment that falls under DISA, DOD STIG, or other heavy security requirements, then by the letter of the law, not only are you required to use Win Mobile 6+, but you also need 3rd party security servers and per-phone apps, and an seperate server for device auditing. And oh yea, PED are forbidden too...

Apple, when are you going to add native support for the Exchange 2007 features that will allow your device to pass DISA STIG? Do this and you;ll instantly become the Exchange Admin's prefered device (and cost about $160 per phone less to deploy in 3rd party software and server licensing than WinMobile per 5,000 users).

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Good article

I am generally an apple hater and would have loved for the Pre to come out on top, but I can't argue with the conclusions of this article or its reasoning behind them.

Very nice article.

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Happy

@Danny 14

Why on earth would you be restricted to WiMo? The iPhone has POP, IMAP and Exchange support built in.

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IPB
Jobs Halo

Time for a confession

I have a T-Mobile G1. I love it. It's a great phone and does everything the iPhone does and a couple of things it can't. I'll defend it to the death and I hold out great hope for Android.

However, recently my girlfriend's crappy Nokia died a final death so I bought her an iPhone 3G S. It's amazing, a stunning handset, great app store and the browser rocks. Apps not running in the background doesn't seem to be a massive issue.

The thing that really sold me is that while there are many things that the G1 does just as well as the iPhone, the iPhone does them with way more style.

I'd quite happily own two smart phones....

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Flame

'Undocumented feature'?

Right there in the iPhone user manual:

http://manuals.info.apple.com/en/iphone_user_guide.pdf

"Displaying playback controls at any time

You can display playback controls at any time when you’re listening to music and using another application—or even when iPhone is locked—by double-clicking the Home button (see “Home Button” on page 95). If iPhone is active, the playback controls appear over the application you’re using. After using the controls, you can close them or tap Music to go to the Now Playing screen. If iPhone is locked, the controls appear onscreen, then disappear automatically after you finish using them."

Also you can browse other songs in the album of the song you are listening to by tapping the Track List button at the top of the screen.

As for 'rare birds' that use the Genius (which is very useful for finding similar music to the track you are listening to) or On the Go (which again is a custom playlist made up on the fly without having to sync), or even the ratings, music within the universal search, full searchability of the music tracks, shake to shuffle etc .... I disagree. They are useful and very important features!

Now go back and re-write that section.

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Anonymous Coward

iPhone

Now with overheating, yellow screen tint and case discolouration. Great.

Only Apple - phones for the hard of thinking.

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Stop

Multitasking

The iPhoine DOES multitask.... Mail, SMS, MMS, iPod, phone, mobileme sync, push service, all run in the background, as does the notification service.

What else WOULD you run in the background? Chat? no... you only need notifications of an incoming message, you don't need the entire app footprint in RAM using battery power to maintain a heartbeat to the server... Web pages cached remain whether the app is active or not. Games save to a sleep state and can resume where they left off, as can most other apps. When you're not actively using them, as long as you can resume where you left off, what's the big deal???

I admit, the iPod interface could use some "plug-ins" letting things like Pandora run in the background THROUGH the iPod interface instead of needing to be their own who applications, but that's something completely possible in the future. That said, how long do you think Pandora will play in the background while you're doing something else in the foreground?

I WOULD like the ability to queue a large download in one app, switch to another, then come back and find my download done (this works in mail, but not in Safari). This however is apparently being addressed.

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Surprising

My Palm Centro does voice memo recording, takes videos, auto-completes URLs in the browser... so it's surprising that they are missing from the Pre. I imagine they will appear soon.

-A.

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@ Mark Jan

"Where oh where did Nokia lose it...?"

Did they? Maybe in the N Series, but definitely not when it comes to E Series phones. It's a different market from the all-dancing devices, but at end of the day there are a lot of people who just want a well made phone that just works. I can even use my E51 with just one hand, a feat neither Apple nor Palm can deliver.

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@ Vasilis (and rick)

Size and weight: A "soap dish" it might be, wider and longer, but it;s SO much thinner, and it;s rounded profile makes it VERY easy to get in and out of my pocket, and in fact, it spends MOST of it;s life in my shirt pocket... I hardly notice it.

Fit and Finish: Why do I need to buy a screen protector??? If Apple can make a smudge free scratch proof screen, why can't Palm? Why should I spend money (regularly) on covers? Also, they weight EXACTLY THE SAME, so no, the glass is NOT a disadvantage for Apple.

Keyboard: Though i do prefer tactile keyboards, I have gotten VERY used to the iPhones virtual keyboard, and it's very good spelling prediciton. Not being able to type sideways on the pre by itself is a nonstarter for me. Their decision to not have the keyboard slide out in landscape is the single dumbest move they made, and if people who hate the iPhone keyboard think the Pre's is worse, victor iPhone.

Display: the 0.x in larger screen DOES make a difference. Also it being smudge free doesn't hurt. I keep it in my pocket all the time, including at happy hour at the pub, as does nearly all of the IT staff here as the iPhone outnumbers ALL other smart phones combined in a survey of our 130 man systems team and 2300 person IT department. If you don;t like it in your pocket, it;s slimmer profile gives it a win on your belt clip... lett likely to bump into things.

USB: um... I have an 8GB USB drive on my keychain that cost $30. Adding that to my iPhone would have cost $100 at the time ($100 for 16GB now). Also, I can't very easily LOAN my iPoone to people, and anything I carry on a portable drive is usually NOT phone data. I can sync any files I want to the iPone REMOTELY from my home PC through FREE software, and can VNC into it directly anytime I want from the phone... Other than video, music, messages, notes, what files WOULD i put on the phne that can't cust as easily go on cheaper USB flash???? This is a pointless argument.

Battery: hmmm.. have am I more likely to have in the middle of nowhere: My charging cable or dock from my car and a handy USB port or ANYONE with an iPod cable handy, or a battery that I'm far more likely to 1) leave at home anyway, or 2) find is dead since I'll rearely switch to it, and 3) ISN'T YET AVAILABLE IN STORES and costs 4x what a charging cable does, and weighs more too! 2% of people use a spare. Why? the phone, undcer heavy use, lasts 24 hours, and is rarely far from a $9 charging cable that's universal to all iPods and Apple devices... i own 7 charging cables/docks, and the total of them cost less than 1 spare battery i couldn't even buy yet for the Pre that UI'd never have with me in a charged state anyway.

Video playback: Codecs? well, since there's no SDK, don;t hold your breath. And any file you have on your PC, there's a free converter to an iPhone compatible format anyway.... (which does play more than just the Apple file format, just not AVI and WMV).

Audio Playback: So, you're telling me that the genious function wasn't an automatic win for Apple here??? Not HAVEING to manage playlists to get a good mix on the fly with a few clicks on the device was not considdered a HUGE advantage???? Oh, and when Apple breaks the iTunes Pre hack, what then for your Pre?

Phone: Contact management is easier. Integration with phone numbers on web pages is better. it has complete voice control over the phone (and nearly everythign else). Scrolling for a contact is easier. The interface looks better. I CAN do a quick and effective search, contacts are not jumbled together in a massive single unfoormatted list, in nearly every way, the iPhoine is better. Visual voicemail, when not available, falls back to traditional voicemail, so it DOES have both worlds, the Pre does not. Winner Apple. On voice quality: tie.

Multitaskeing: Name a single app you need to use in the background on an iPhone that either doesn't already, could easily be handled by simple notifications without backgrounding, or can simply be put to sleep and resumed. EVERY app on the iphone can support notifacations, resume in place without first having to force a "save", or can already be backgrounded. The ONLY limitation (promised to be fixed by 3.2 at the latest) is that only 1 web site can be processing a download at a time. The Pre also has this limitation currently. This is a NON argument.

Interface: Did you READ the review of the Pre's OS interface????? It's CRAP! Disorganized, complicated to navigate, requires more clicks, limits lists of apps to 9, limits number of app pages, doens't support landscape in most apps, is slow to respond, is buggy... Maybe when the web OS is at version 3 it will compete, but even iPone OS 1.0 was MUCH more eveolved than the Pre's release. Granting Palm a win because they've been developing PDA OS's longer? um... Remember the Newton? Predated the entire Palm company by several years....

Search: I CAN use any search engine (for the web) on the iPhone. We're not talking about that. We're talking about the ability to search what's on the PHONE. Can't search e-amil. Pre looses. period. 1 pane for search on iPhone, returns everything. (in real time btw, have to hit "search" button on Pre to start getting results, and some results are only available when you have a signal!!!) App developers can tie into search as well, and make their data searchible. Oh, i can also seartch BY VOICE COMAND on the iPhone... (google app).

Apps: 1: there is no PRE SDK yet... 2: there were only 29,000 unique Palm apps released in it;s 10 year OS history. Apple has 50,000 and growing at a pace to double that in a year. 3: most Palm apps were $19-49 each, iPhone apps average $2-3. Even Full blown office apps are only $10-20. The EXPENSIVE games are $5-10, including titles that sell for $30 for the DS. 4: The old app emulator? have you seen the reviews? most apps don't work anyway since it can only run basic apps, and no apps that require hardware level support requirements (most video players, networking apps, games except simple ones, don't work). If you HAVE a large investment in Palm apps, maybe it's worth it, if those apps are compatible, but 90% of them could probably be completely replaced with about $30 spent in the app store... This does not include jailbreak apps for the iPhone that are rerally cool and free.

Lets add a few Rick missed:

Voice control: Oops, not on the pre...

GPS support: It's there, in basic maps on the Pre. No TomTom/Garmin/etc turn-by-turn app. Might come later, but I'm never going to buy a device on promises...

Support: Walk into an Apple store, even with an out-of-waranty iPhone, and they'll not only help you, but not only myself, but several co-workers have had their out-of-waranty devices replaced free by Apple. The wealth of user information, and friendlieness of Apple support ius FAR better than Palm has ever been. Palm actually CHARGES for application based (non hardware issue) support calls...

Remote: The device controlls AppleTV and iTunes remotels. RDP and VNC apps are available to control PCs remotely as well.

Sync: Syncs not only with iTunes natively, and Exchange servers natively, and nearly every e-mail provider iether through Push, POP, or IMAP, but it also syncs IN REAL TIME, wirelessly, with MobileMe and with several iPhone apps (including free ones).

Major socail site support: Loading video from the device direct to YouTube or FaceBook? Oops, not on the pre, not ever since it can't do video. Sync with mobile me sites and share pictures in real time with other people, not on the Pre. Loopt, Facebook, and a dozen other services native app support? Apple yes, Pre no.

Security: Proven in pwn2own: Apple yes, Pre no. Since loading 3rd party unscanned code is possible, even through remote connections, the Pre looks like it will be pretty easy to hack... And since ALL that dat ais automatically pulled from so many sites and services, and not secured in a walled off database, it will be THE choice for hackers to go after with identity theft mobile viruses...

Ubiquity: There are 20+ million iPhone/touch users. Ask nearly anyone and they'll not only recomend apps to you, they'll share tips, tricks, and more. There's a thriving online community, and the app ratings are usually spot on except on the first day or two after release. Going anywhere, I can ask 3-4 people and find someone with a charging cable handy. Walking into any store I can find the cables, docks, devices, cases, and more. The Pre, only sold at Sprint, has no stuff at Walmarts and Bestbuy's, and if I can't find a Sprint store (closest one is 30 minutes across town from me) I can't replace broken/lost accessories. Also, apps I buy for the phone ALSO work on the Wife's iPod, as do all the devices I've bought for the phone. It's a universal platform.

Nike support: Not only is their the FREE trial guru which I use biking and hiking to track my progress, but with nike+, now i don't need my iPod and my phone, and at 4.8oz, I've had no complaints running with it on my arm in the gym.

Video Out: I can connect my iPhone to an HDTV with a $30 cable. Several portable TVs actually INCLUDE iPod docs, and many 30" Plus flat panels are starting to as well. What can the Pre do???

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Thumb Up

More like this please

Good article.

I'd like to see more of these sort of comparisons, ideally focussing on the different OSes available. Perhaps because I have been reliant on Palm OS in the past it would be good to be backing something with a longer term future when I next switch.

WebOS is on my list of possibles, but if the Pre handset is a weakness the OS may not get the chance to survive for long.

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to Michael C

"I agree, standing up BES is simply a tax we're not willing to pay for our 14,000 users."

Did you compare the features? BES is not cheap, but does quite a lot of stuff. Say that you don't need the features, don't call it a tax.

Can I ask a question? How much does it cost to deploy iPhone to 14,000 users, setup group based iPhone policies (like strong password policy, disabling camera, ...) and push custom apps to their phone over the air?

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Anonymous Coward

@ Bad Beaver

Quote: C'mon! #

By Bad Beaver Posted Wednesday 1st July 2009 10:23 GMT

Folks, I really, REALLY don't care whether you like the keyboard or not. Both implementations will have their individual pros and cons, it's all up to personal preference. What would actually be relevant information: does the Pre or the latest iPhone FINALLY manage to sync and display calendar and contact CATEGORIES (say from iCal and Address Book or whatever) properly? It is quite important to be able to tell things apart.

Jesus, mate, where have you been the past year and more? The iPhone has been doing this since OS 2.0 nevermind OS 3.0. The Pré probably does it out of the box.

Wrt to Keyboards and typing:

iPhone OS 3.0 saw some small but important improvements here - when you reach the edge of the screen while typing, the content will now scroll as you type so that your text always remains onscreen. Also, you can now drag around the screen regardless of whether you are typing or not. In other words, you CAN always see what you are typing.

One major advantage that the virtual keyboard has over hardware ones that isn't mentioned in the article is the ability to switch between languages with complete ease. If you are multi-lingual then it is trivial to go between e.g. the English and French or Japanese input methods. With a hardware keyboard you are stuck with the one you get. Additionally, inputting accents or symbols is a complete piece of piss on the virtual keyboard and a disaster on a hardware one.

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Grenade

Still no ideal update

Meh, both are nice in ways but neither fit the bill for me (old N95-8G owner here). I do a lot of hiking & camping so need a replaceable battery. I use Viewranger when hiking but also run Garmin, CoPilot, and Nokia Maps (also occasionally use Sygic and Navigon) for road trips where I don't have wifi or 3g, so I need proper gps s/w, Google Maps doesn't cut it in the boondocks of Spain or Mauritania.

Multitasking is vital in order to run gps and play music, run Joiku hotspot, SportsTracker, StepCounter, Viewranger, CallFilter, T9Nav, torrent, etc etc in umpteen different combinations as required.

Capacitive screens are almost entirely useless to me because I use the phone on a motorbike wearing gloves and contained in a waterproof flexible-screen case (Aquabox), same on the mountainbike.

Wish list.....

High res screen, preferably resistive.

Removable battery.

32gig storage (whether by sd card, built-in, or a combination of both makes no diff).

Stereo bluetooth (FM transmitter would be a bonus).

5mp+ camera

Multitasking.

A built-in browser is ok only if it supports flash, but a choice is preferable (Opera Mobile, Skyfire, Fennec etc).

Standalone road gps apps (Garmin, Tom Tom, CoPilot etc).

Standalone hiking gps apps (Viewranger, etc)

Wifi s/w (such as Joiku).

Fitness s/w (with similar functionality to Nokias Sportstracker, Wellness Diary, Stepcounter)

Functionality rules, I don't care how pretty the UI is if it can't do the tasks I want.

Nothing seems to have the combination of h/w and apps I want, unless someone can correct me? i.e..

The IPhone has some proper gps apps coming but I dislike their philosophy, the locked down app-store, non-removable battery, poor camera, lack of proper multitasking, and carrier lock-in (in Ireland).

The Pre hasn't got the apps (currently), the storage or the camera.

Android has got some equivalents to the Nokia fitness s/w, but lacks proper gps s/w (afaik) and the h/w to date has been poor (the Hero might be the first decent set).

Win-mo has possibly got the apps and the freedom (xda), some handsets have great specs in terms of processing power and screens, but all seem to have poor cameras (plus I also dislike MS!!).

So basically I want an N95 8GB equivalent with higher res touchscreen and updated cpu, the N97 had been looking promising but lack of ram and updated cpu/gpu knocks it out of contention. The Samsung I8910 currently looks the most promising but has a capacitive screen so I'm not sure I could live with that on the bikes, but I should probably be pulling over anyway to adjust the gps etc ;-)

Other than that I don't see anything out there suitable at the minute. Anyone ??

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Multitasking

A point that seems to be widely misunderstood is that all of APPLE'S iPhone apps are multitasking when they need to be. It's only THIRD-PARTY apps that can't (at least for now) run in the background on an iPhone.

Of course, the Pre *has* no third-party apps. So what it boils down to is that "as supplied*, both devices are fully multitasking.

Thus to be fair, you should have declared a tie in this category, while noting that *future* third-party Pre apps, if and when they arrive, may be able to multitask. (It's generally regarded as likely that future third-party iPhone apps will also be allowed this ability.)

Andy Baird

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The iPhone 3GS Rules, Slays the Pre

Battery life on the Pre is laughable. You have to carry an extra battery along with the Pre to equal the iPhone. With the iPhone, you can also carry an external battery if you want it to last a lot longer. In this scenario, the iPhone wins by a long short.

Software and Ecosystem - the Pre will NEVER catch up to the iPhone. Just look at the iPod and all its competition. None were ever able to create a viable ecosystem.

The iPod Touch is a HUGE complement and weapon to the iPhone. The iPod Touch doubles the effective market for iPhone apps. This kills any other platform. Soon, Apple will add a camera/video phone to the iPod Touch. This kills the competition.

The iPhone/iPod Touch not only competes against the smartphones, they compete against: The handheld gaming market (Nintendo DS/Sony Playstation), the small camera market (Sony, Canon, Nikon). the pocket Video Camcorder Market. The iPhone is a viable competitor against these products and thus can do much more than the Pre. The iPhone kills the Pre.

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Flame

WTF?!

I will admit to hating Apple. Out of hand and probably irrationally. But I am going to buy an iPhone.

The iPhone has been out for a number of years and the competition have been fucking pathetic. A complete waste of space.

How many years has it been and we get half-arsed attempts from other manufacturers that tick some but not all of the iPhone's boxes. They may do one *1* or *2* things extra and they think that that's won them the war. What the galloping fuck!? They're like a bunch of fucking kids bringing their crayon drawings to their parents to be stuck on the fridge.

So fuck them, I'm turning my normal Apple ire against the competition and spurring them on by buying the competition.

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pocket

"by double-clicking the Home button (see “Home Button” on page 95)."

thanks for that. guess I should have read the manual because that's pretty useful

As for keeping the iPhone in your pocket you guys are talking rubbish. I keep mine in my pocket fine even when I'm cycling and it's not broken or uncomfortable. The reason people get it out and put it on the table is to show off!

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Ted
Boffin

Ask Apple's Enterprise Group...

@ Michael C

Nobody here is going to know for sure, so depending on your country, you'll need to ask Apple's Enterprise Group that question.

http://www.apple.com/iphone/enterprise/

Here are all Apple's International Phone Numbers:

http://www.apple.com/support/contact/phone_contacts.html

Just say you are considering deploying 14,000 iPhones, and they will get you in contact with the correct group.

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Jobs Horns

AC - "WTF?!"

Yup. Pretty much word for word how I feel. You can only be bothered to let RIM, SE, Nokia etc. try for so long when you get fed up with waiting....

End of this month, contract renewal, that's it. Jobs 1 - SE (in my case) 0.

Icon because that's the point really.

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@James Katt

Agree with pretty much all of your post but there is no way that the iPhone (any version) competes remotely with "Sony, Canon, Nikon" in the "small camera market". Even the cheapest and most basic camera from Sony, Canon or Nikon utterly annihilates the iPhone camera (and any other phone camera for that matter) in terms of picture quality, and I don't see that changing in the near future. I don't care how many mega-pixels a phone camera has, because with the crappy little lenses that they are obliged to use the image will always be utter shite.

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@Ted

Genuinely, thanks you... Posts as straightforward and helpful as yours are rare.

Of course, I already did that, but was kind of hoping others might too :)

Anyway, Thanks.

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@ Anonymous wish list

Fitness apps: iFitness, GymBuddy, Trail Guru (free), also 3G S works with nike+ now too. There are MANY more fitness apps out there, these are just the ones I use on the iPhone.

You don;t need a removable battery, you "might" need an external battery charger. More likely, you need a charging cable ($9). I've had very few days that I ran my battery dead before bed time, and I use the phone heavily. I charge it at work via USB, and dock it next to the TV in the living room when I'm not using it, but many days, that's just unnecessary. 20 minutes of charging and I can go 5 more hours of playing music. Adding a replaceable battery, why? If it;s defective, they'll replace it for you. Having one that clips in only adds weight, bulk, and contacts that can go bad. Also, dropping a LiIon or LiPo battery is BAD, and the cause of most phone fires.

32GB done. Stereo Bluetooth, done. GPS, coming (from TomTom, AT&T Nav is already available)

high res screen: just how many pixels DO you want in a 3.x in device??? As it is, they're smaller than the eye can see unaided at 2 feet (typical viewing distance from face). It supports progressive output to a TV, so with the right files, you can watch in 720i. What more do you want?

5+ MP? Without a mechanical lense? on a 0.25in die? The doise would be rediculous... Have you seen the size of the 5MP lenses on camera phones that take good pictures??? They're massive, and obtrusive, and still take crappier pictures than $40 point-n-shoot cameras. If you want quality pictures, bring a real camera... The new 3MP shoots nice pics that also print nice. Without a REAL flash (no LED flashes do NOT count), low light pictures are going to suck, and they'll suck WORSE at 5MP, if you understand optics and CCD technology...

Multitasking: All the iPhone apps (and the forthcoming TomTom GPS software) do multitask. Name an app other than mail, messaging, music, GPS, phone, nike+, and background dowloading, that you need to have running, using CPU and RAM? Anything else can simply use the notification service, or can "suspend" and close. If all the apps can resume where you left off, and any app that collects alerts can, and the core functions for realtime use all background already, what's left? You're not running a torrent client on your phone.... What are you doing, wardriving? get a netbook if you need more, geeze.

Flash is dead. Long Live WebKit and HTML 5. We can get better quality video now with less bandwidth and without the CPU and RAM burdens of flash. The new open web standards combined with Java replace evernything else.

Hiking apps: There are several. I use Trailguru (free). There's also Park Maps, Path Tracker, Trail behind, the list goes on... many are free, most are 0.99. There's also a slew of state park maps, not to mention google...

Joiku? You mean wifi sharing? Well, good luck getting AT&T to let you do that. Then again, I've been in VERY few places where I'd use my notebook where wifi wasn't simply generally available. Since I have an iPhone and AT&T service at home, I get free wifi access at most airports, startbucks, McDonalds, and all other AT&T hotspots, not to mention everywhere else it;s just generally free... I'm not even considdereing using tethering. That was a big deal a few years ago when finding WiFi was difficult. Now its easy...

Everyone's beating up Apple on carrier lock-in, but try buying a Pre from someone other than sprint. Try buying a Storm from multiple vendors. Every major hot new device is locked in. until the FTC does somhing about it (fingers TIGHTLY crossed, candles and incents burning, live chicken on standby...) you're just screwed from ALL of them... You Can allways buy it at full proce ($599) and take it to anyone that supports 3G...

There is no perfect device. I'm not even saying the iPhone is the best device or OS, just that currently, for me, it is, and many of the concerns expressed by others like yourself are simply misinformed FUD. Given the iPhone has the best (and cheapest by far) apps, decent plans (compared to the competition which ALL have higgher costing data plans, unless you can tolerate Sprint and having a phone that CAN'T be brought to another network later, which i can't). The iPhone is mature, stable, a great gaming platform, and continuing to improve. Apps are cheap and pleantiful. The interface is nice enough to look at and actually works, backgrounding is a non-issue. ...plus, in a few months, when either Verizon or Tmobile releases the iPhone as well, AT&T's plan prices will drop to Sprint's $99 all inclusive level overnight... and the existing plan states you can switch plans with no contract penalty (other than potentially loosing some rollover minutes, which won;t matter if you go unlimited).

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FAIL

@Vasilis

And you're accusing the article of bias?

- Size & Weight

Pre is not pocketable? So you rather fit a soap dish than a soap in your pocket? Very much doubt that. Pre wins

I used to have an N95 - quite a lot smaller than the iPhone, but a bit thicker. The iPhone is almost invisible in my pocket in comparison. It makes a huge difference.

- Keyboard

Well you moan here about not being able to rotate the screen. Fair enough. However when you rotate the screen and have the virtual keyboard out how much of the screen is actually visible. Cause when you are viewing a movie you do not use the keyboard. Draw.

When you're watching a film you don't have the keyboard up, so that doesn't make a difference. What does make a difference is the fact that the buttons are not tiny. I have a Treo Pro for work, which has bigger buttons than the Pre, and it's uncomfy to type on. To the extent that if I'm writing a long email, I'll write it on my iPhone and send it to my work account, then forward it on from there.

- Display

iphone has a bigger screen but again it comes down to the soap dish vs soap principle. How many of you take your iphone to the pub and sit down with it being in your pocket? Cause none of my friends who own one can do that. Draw.

Your friends need to get better fitting clothes. I do exactly that, as do many of my friends.

- Phone Operation

The ring tone can be changed. Also you have vibration. Regarding the visual voicemail notifications it does NOT supported by most carriers. How many times have you been roaming where you can use that feature? That is false. I think that the best way to do this is to incorporate both methods. The "old style" is so 20th century? Well aren't all phones using the same style? I wonder why....support is the answer. Pre wins.

I have been roaming with my iPhone quite extensively. Visual voicemail has worked in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Jordan, Iceland, France, Germany, the US, Austria, and even Wales. When it's not working, you get the old style dialing a voicemail number. So it's doing exactly what you suggest: both methods. Unlike the Pre.

Searchability

I do not like how you do not have much control over synergy. However it is a great way to merge contacts. Universal search can be modified to add new search engines and sites etc. Nothing out there can beat those two features. This is so PC like. Sorry to say this but what kind of "retard" would just search on the word "in" ? What do you expect to get back when you type "in" into Google? =) Pre wins.

The review talks about searching the phone, not the web. You've not actually used an iPhone, have you?

Dearie me.

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@Ken Ryan 1

"Thing that stops me from getting the iphone is the complete inability to sync calendar and contacts with any programs I actually use. No outlook here, no Mac, so much for syncing to the ipod. Yes there are kludges, I eventually got my calendar over via Google and some bridges. Contacts no chance."

Google Contacts Sync works fine on the iPhone - what problem are you having?

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Ted
Boffin

Larger Enterprise Purchases

@ Michael C

No problem, if you didn't get the response you were looking for, go up the chain. Call Apple "directly" until you find the group or person that will answer all of your questions and take your order. Apple is about 16,000 people (minus the Store staff) so it can take several calls, but anyone calling with a request for 14,000 units of anything, will be taken care of quite quickly...

Call 408 996-1010 - that is the main switchboard, explain your request and you'll be routed to the appropriate group or person.

http://www.apple.com/contact/

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Will Palm Support the Pre in 2 Years Time?

To all the potential owners of a Pre. Looking at Palm's track record for supporting PDAs (still no Vista Support for most models) do you really expect them to support the Pre in 2 years time?

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Jobs Halo

What's the diff?

Do port websites look better on one or the other? Which one is AT&T going to offer me as a free upgrade when my two year contract is up? THAT is all that really matters to me. Besides, AT&T will never let the PRE onto it's network and the Pre doesn't record video. Now all I need is to synch with MS Outlook at work and it's a done deal for me. Which one does that??

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Linux

@Tim Miller

"even Wales" lol

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Thank to reading your review

I have ordered myself an HTC Hero running Android.

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Anonymous Coward

@ Michael C

Thank you for the list of hiking and fitness apps. Some seem to be good enough to supplant the Nokia sports tracking and fitness offerings, but I can't see any that provide European ordnance survey maps.

However I'm not spreading FUD, what a ridiculous statement to make. I've knocked out the IPhone from a possible list of replacements simply because it doesn't match my requirements, the same as the others I listed. I choose the tool best suited for the job and couldn't care less about fanboyism or brand loyalty so that's just daft. Read again what I said, the Iphone is nice but fails for me on several important points, i.e.

I require a removable battery for when I have no access to power, i.e. none whatsoever, e.g. out in the wilderness, be it a desert, the Scandanavian tundra, or miles any from anywhere. Four or five spare batteries is the only way to go in these situations.

Capacitive is virtually useless to me, I don't want to be taking off gloves at -20c. Neither do I want to have to pull over to the side of the road everytime I want to adjust or acknowledge something, a message/warning/whatever.

420x380 is sufficient res for my needs, it doesn't have to be 800x600 etc. My N95 is only 320x240 which is inadequate for easily viewing webpages so I'm using the term high-res relative to that. Even if flash is technically dead/superceded, many sites still use it and if a browser can't view it then it's no good to me. If I'm not allowed a choice of alternate browsers depending upon my browsing requirements then a phone is no good to me.

I am a part-time photographer and perfectly understand the limitations of phone cameras. My N95 takes 5mp pics which are perfectly adequate for my needs when travelling, the IPhone doesn't (I haven't used a 3GS yet so can't speak about that). I have seen 8mp shots from the I8910 and N86 which are very good.

The point being that convergence is very important to me in the interests of space and weight. I don't want to be carrying a dedicated camera, gps and netbook and associated chargers etc, if I don't have to, I already have several of each and the N95 has replaced them for much of what I do.

Of course it's not as good as a standalone unit, but that's missing the point, it's sufficiently good that I can already live with the compromises, but two years later some things can be improved (primarily a higher res screen and more storage).

These can easily be accomplished at this stage and yet nobody has come up with something good enough, e.g. the N97 has the storage and screen, but somehow manages to have less ram available and I believe it lacks a gpu, so it's useless when running the number of apps I do and is probably slower at gps rendering etc.

I don't live in the States so AT&T, Sprint etc are completely irrelevant to me, I live in Europe and buy unlocked. I don't live in a city so wifi is not readily available when I'm at home, neither is it most of time I'm travelling. AT&T navigation is useless since I'm not in the States, and Tom Tom doesn't appear to have been released yet. I've had it on my N95 for years and it's only one of several gps apps I run because the quality of maps and routing varies tremendously betwen the various offerings depending on what country I'm in.

Once again, I recognise the IPhone is nice but that non-removable battery is a killer for me, the camera isn't good enough, I'm extremely lairy of capacitive for reasons already listed, and it doesn't yet provide the gps/mapping options that I require. Is that FUD ? No, it's being realistic. The same goes for the exisiting Android phones, the Palm Pre, Blackberry etc.

Stop looking at this from a US-centric viewpoint, a city-dweller viewpoint or whatever and try not to be so defensive about your IPhone, it may do what you want but, once again, it doesn't do what I want, and saying such is not bias or FUD, it's merely a statement of fact.

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WTF?

Microtac madness

all well and good.... but following the link are you telling me I was constantly extracting the fiddly aeriel on my Motorola in the early 90's all those times FOR NO REASON WHATSOVER??!!

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You missed an important category

You missed the "Fire hazard" category.

As there have been reports of iPhone 3GS becoming too hot to hold and getting so hot they actually glow with the heat I think it's safe to say the Pre wins this one, and frankly it's such an important category in general it's enough to swing a win to the Pre overall.

What use is a phone if it risks setting on fire as the iPhone 3GS does?

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Capacitive screens and overheating

If you're looking for a smartphone with a resistive screen, you're I supect you're going to be SOL, pretty much all the new ones are going capacitive these days. I think there are some WinMo ones that are still going resistive, but as a concept it seems to be dying.

@Ian 11

Regarding the heat issues, Several of my colleagues have 3Gs's (I'm still stuck on my "ancient" 2G) , and are reporting no heat problems whatsoever. I can't help but think that this is either being blown out of all proportion, or that the've had a bad batch of batteries somewhere. DOes anyone have any hard numbers for how many people are reporting this?

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Grenade

Blah Blah blah

iPhone this.. iPhone that.... It seems that the iPhone fan boys just get their shorts all in a bunch whenever anyone doesn't just accept the iPhone as the secret of the universe, by default. The simple fact is that anyone who doesn't want AT&T as their vendor or anyone who wants features the iPhone doesn't support, will not get an iPhone. The rest who have more money than sense will buy an iPhone. I recently talked to an AT&T store employee about why she switched from the iPhone to a Blackberry. Quite simply because the iPhones short comings were things she simply couldn't get past. Not everyone will just because fruit flavored fanboys love their fruit flavored kit. Some aren't going to drink the coolaid and have an Apple love fest with you. Get over it. It's just a phone. Not the second coming of Christ.

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Jobs Halo

Another poor man's iPhone...yawn

I think this article just makes me glad I've been using an iphone all the way through from the first one to the 3GS. Basides the multi-tasking, there's nothing the pre offers which would make me drop the iphone, and the person reviewing clearly doesn't use an iPhone daily (or else he doesn't know the OS very well). The pre looks fugly too, they need to make it look prettier.

I find it amusing how people are still going on about Android dominating the industry. It hasn't and it most likely won't. The time for it to dominate is past, public opinion is apathetic and it was a missed opportunity for Google. The HTC rubbish phones it was introduced in were tantamount to a poor man's iPhone, and apart from a couple of nice innovations such as multi-tasking, the Pre falls into that same category. Who will buy a product that looks and feels cheap and confusing outside of the IT industry?

Re apps, the exponential growth in apps, s because of the exponential growth of iPhone ownership. The installed units needs to be there to justify people developing for a platform. Seeing as how Pre piggy backs on the achievements of Apple (iTunes) rather than have its own infrastructure, I can't really see it having a viable app store, at least when compared to iTunes and at best there'll be something comparable to The google one or the blackberry one i.e. a decent facebook app and that's about it.

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