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Talkin' Treo -- v051206

Fri May 12, 2006 - 3:05 PM EDT - By Annie Latham

Week ending 12 May 2006

The Air is Humming and Something Great is Coming…"

Things are percolating at Palm while the rest of the mobile and Treo world was relatively quiet this week.

Palm News

Treo & the Mobile Sales Force – Another Win for Palm
This week, Palm announced that medical technology leader, Medtronic has deployed 2000 Treo 650 smartphones to increase field sales force productivity and improve inventory management. They'll use Treos as a sales tool, a wireless reference and a communication device.

Palm Execs to Speak to the Financial Community
Palm executives plan to present at several financial conferences this month.
On Thursday, Ed Colligan, Palm’s president and CEO spoke at the Piper Jaffray 8th Annual Hardware & Communications Conference in New York City. On Wednesday, May 22, he will be in San Francisco participating in the 34th Annual JPMorgan Technology Conference. The next day, chief financial officer, Andrew Brown will be speaking at the Lehman Brothers Worldwide Wireless and Wireline Conference. For more information, read Palm’s press release.

Palm Kicks Off Trade-in Program
Palm has put together a trade-in program where you can get cash for your old Palm device, when you purchase a new Treo smartphone. In case you were wondering, a Treo 600 in excellent condition has an $80 trade-in value. However, for some reason, Palm subtracts $15 for shipping and handling so your net value is $65. Another thing worth noting is that this trade-in offer isn’t limited to Palm devices. See for yourself at this site.

Palm Faces Intensifying Smartphone Market
This week, Forbes ran a short piece by Maya Roney stating that Piper Jaffray was maintaining a "market perform" rating on Palm, citing strong Treo sales. According to a published report by Piper Jaffray analyst, T. Michael Walkley, Palm Treo sales were solid in North America during April. However, his checks also indicated increasing competition from HTC and Research in Motion's BlackBerry at GSM carriers.

PDA Shipments Rise 6.6% Says Gartner
Gartner, Inc. just published numbers for the first quarter of 2006. Worldwide PDA shipments totaled 3.65 million units, a 6.6 percent increase from the first quarter of last year. Here’s the interesting thing, Gartner's numbers primarily reflect handhelds and PDA's (and does not include Treo shipments). However, they do include some RIM smartphone devices that they classify as PDA's with cellular radios. Gartner includes Treo shipments in their quarterly smartphones report.

According to this report, Palm PDA shipments declined 25.2 percent, as its attention shifted to Palm's Treo smartphone business. Palm PDA shipments are at their lowest level since 1998. However, Treo shipments were581,000, with an estimated20 percent of these being the new Treo 700w.

CNET, Others are a-Buzzin'
CNET just published a story about the "new Palm OS Treo. And, strangely enough, the CIO blog site ran a story as well. There's no doubt that something's coming. Now let's just be patient and wait for official word from Palm.

Recent TreoCentral Guides & Reviews

Solio Universal Solar Charger - By James Hromadka

"It can be handy for long trips in the outdoors when you have multiple devices that you want to charge. Since it charges the Treo using sunlight, there's no electric bill to pay or batteries to use…"

Three Different Organizer Cases from PDA Skins - By Jay Gross

"Vertical or horizontal, pretty petite or capaciously huge, PDA Skins organizers nicely enhance Treo life, with pockets nested into pockets, plus Velcro strips and elastic bands to hold things dear to you and to your Treo. An extra stylus, for example, plus a couple of pens, a pencil, a plastic fortune in credit cards, and some folded money. If you leave one of these on a park bench, in a diner, or otherwise unattended, you're in big trouble. Oh, but you'll be so organized on the way."

Top Twelve Windows Mobile apps for the 700w - By Tim Hillebrand

This article introduces twelve picks for productivity and enrichment software for your Treo 700w. It skips specialty and entertainment programs in favor of more general applications.

Reviews & Guides from Elsewhere in the Treo Community

Treo 700w & HTC PPC 6700 in the Real World
Ben at Technology Evangelist recently took a look at the Treo 700w and the Audiovox/HTC PPC 6700 and wrote a story about how these two devices work in the real world (rather than doing a side-by-side comparison).

"Alas, I don't think either the 6700 or the Treo 700w are ready to replace my Treo 650, which is a huge bummer. There are items that I miss such as my mobile SlingBox, LogMeIn mobile account and the kick-butt WM5 today screen. Until the WM5 operating system does a better job of phone integration and has a better notification system for SMS and E-mail I don't think these devices are ready for prime time. Already I have missed 2 very important phone calls and many, many important E-mail messages were delayed due to the WM5 notification problem."

PDA Shootout: Treo 700w vs. the Treo 650 vs. the PPC-6700

The PDA shootout by Computing Unplugged is a worthwhile read. They looked at the Treo 700w, the PPC-6700 and "the venerable Treo 650, arguably one of the most popular smartphones out there.

"The Treo 700w is not a barn-burner. While the better camera and EvDO network make it somewhat compelling over the Treo 650, the Palm Desktop is still a sweet environment and the Palm OS just feels tighter. Due to the compromises Palm made in the 700w (the smaller screen, bad dialing interface, obsolete desktop software), the new device something of a disappointment, and that was a sad surprise."

Guide to Treo Music Listening Options
Andrew at Treonauts has put together a handy guide to listening to music on your Treo.

"Whatever options you choose to listen to your music I believe that you'll find the Treo to be a terrific and extremely versatile MP3 player. My only wish now is that the forthcoming Treo 700p will provide support for using 4GB SD cards…"

Butler for Palm OS: A Sweet Suite?
The Butler suite of utilities by Hobbyist Software has been referred to as "The Essential Tool for the Treo 650 & 600." Mike Slocomb at Digital Lifestyles gave it a try
and wrote an extensive review.

"Butler is a fantastic set of utilities for fine-tuning your Treo, richly deserving its place in Palm's Best Seller list."

Treonauts Checks Out theBoom Quiet
Andrew at Treonauts just reviewed UmeVoice's theBoom Quiet headset.

"Whether it is for noise cancellation in an airplane or train and listening to music with Pocket Tunes (above left) or to make a call from your Treo, UmeVoice's theBoom Quiet Noise Reduction Headset truly makes a huge difference if you seek to keep unwanted noises out. Although it is competitively priced with other noise canceling headsets, the $275 price tag will evidently not be for everyone but it has the added benefit of being the only one that also offers a microphone for calling from your Treo."

Watch for TreoCentral's review of all three theBoom models, coming soon to a screen near you.

Endnotes & Ponderables: YouTube to Go
Believe it or not, some of the runner-up winners of TreoCentral's "Hooked on Palm" essay contest have not yet stepped forward to claim their prize. If your TreoCentral user ID name is on this list, please hop over to the TreoCentral Forum and send a PRIVATE message to hrlaser (that's Harv, our Managing Editor).. and send it ONLY from the user ID as it appears on our winners list in the story linked above. Include your prize choice (Palm t-shirt, OR Palm Anniversary candy tin, OR 10 percent Treo Central store discount) plus your real name, your working email address, your physical mailing address – the address must be in the USA, and NOT a Post Office box. You have until 31 May, 2006 to claim your prize. Note – there are a limited number of Palm t-shirts, so a Palm candy tin may be substituted if you choose a t-shirt but wait too long to do it.

Lastly, here's an interesting bit of news. YouTube, the consumer media company for people to watch and share original videos through a Web experience, just launched a service that allows people to upload videos directly from their mobile phones and PDAs to the YouTube Web site. According to their announcement:

"There has been an explosion of mobile devices that capture high quality video. Now, people can share important experiences as they happen and where they happen—breaking news can be uploaded immediately, bands can share tour footage with their fans from the road, and curiosities captured can be viewed across the globe instantly."

Looks like the Treo fits the spec for uploading and sharing video. All you need is:

  • A mobile device that can take video and send Multimedia Messaging Service (MMS) messages, a technology that allows people to create, send and receive text messages that also include an image, audio and/or video clip;
  • Internet access or a data plan from a service provider. YouTube currently supports uploads from the Cingular, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon wireless networks; and
  • A YouTube member account

    It will be interesting to see what kinds of clips folks upload. Since video clips take up considerable space, if I were a SD memory card provider like SanDisk or Dane-Elec, I'd be Snoopy dancing right now.

    That's a wrap!

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