|Tue May 6, 2008 - 2:08 PM EDT - By Mike Guccione|
Being a Palm user in one regard or another for years, I've come to appreciate the simple, straightforward ease of use the operating system offers. Combined with a touch screen, Palm may not be the prettiest of operating systems, but what it does, it does well and pretty effectively. However, as time has gone on, devices have evolved in leaps and bounds over my first Handspring Visor with 2MB of user accessible memory. No doubt this additional memory and horsepower should help to create a more aesthetically pleasing user interface, but no - Palm has put little to no effort in making a prettier, flashier interface.
That being said, the question arises, why? Can the hardware/software not support these more graphic intensive interfaces? Third party developers have made amazing strides in this area, thus disproving that the OS can't handle it. The latest developer to push the envelope is forum user/developer ahsirg. Ahsirg was kind enough to forward me a beta version of his current creation, TouchLauncher (you can now visit his site to download a copy). Building on his previous launcher, iPhoneImitation, TouchLauncher adds drag and drop ability to rearrange apps in the launcher allowing you to list your apps in any order that you want. The old school icons from the native Palm launcher can be easily replaced with more modern versions. Feeling a little creative? You can download the TL IconPack Creation Kit to create an even more custom look for your Treo or Centro.
Though some may not appreciate the obvious likeness to the iPhone, this proves once again just how far behind Palm has fallen with the current OS. Just the fact that third party developers have had to create these eye-pleasing applications shows how far out of touch Palm is with their end-users. Palm, are you listening? There's only so much time and effort developers will be willing to hang on, as evidenced by how many have been throwing in the hat as of late.
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