Palm Pre Versus iPhone
I'm a Sprint customer, and thinking about buying a new smartphone. I like the iPhone, but it's only on AT&T. Sprint's Palm Pre also looks good, but how does it stack up to the iPhone?
Comparing the Palm Pre and Apple iPhone
The iPhone has been out for a while now, but if you're currently a Sprint customer, the Palm Pre is definitely worth a look if you're in the market for a smartphone. Which is the better choice? Let's compare...
Obviously, Mac users and those who first went gaga over the iPhone jumped at the chance to get one when they first appeared. Others that waited were seduced by the hype of the Pre. When you break down the pricing, features and service it looks like this:
The Palm Pre, available on Sprint, costs $200 after a $100 rebate. For a fee of $70 a month, you get 450 minutes of talk time with unlimited messaging and data. For $90 per month, you get 900 minutes and unlimited messaging and data. Splurge with $100 and you get unlimited everything.
As for Apple's latest iPhone, the cost ranges from $200 to $300. AT&T is the sole signal provider, and $90 per month entitles you to 450 voice minutes, unlimited messaging and data. $110 gets you 900 minutes and unlimited voice, messaging and data will cost you $150.
Both require a two-year contract and when you add up the numbers for unlimited plans, iPhone owners will pay $3,600 while Pre users will only spend $2,400. That's a savings of $600 per year. But is that enough to convince you to buy a Pre over the iPhone?
Let's look at features. Both have Bluetooth compatibility, camera, video player, speaker phone and music player. They both provide access to email, 3G speed, Wifi and GPS. But there are also some differences. The Pre has a real slide-out QWERTY keyboard, as opposed to the iPhone's virtual one. That's a big plus for fat-fingered people like me who have trouble pecking out the keystrokes on a touchscreen. Pre owners can access Sprint's 4G network in some areas while AT&T will not have that speed until next year.
The Pre's 3 megapixel camera has an LED flash while the iPhone 3GS has a 3mp cam with autofocus, auto-macro and improved low lighting performance. When it comes to video recording, only the iPhone has the capability and basic editing is available.
The Pre is shorter and thicker than the iPhone while the Apple smartphone has a slightly larger display. The iPhone can be purchased in both 8GB, 16GB and 32GB models, the Pre only comes with 8GB of internal memory. How much memory do you need? Here's a rule of thumb: 8GB will allow you to store about 1800 songs OR 10,000 photos OR about 10 hours of video. Mix and match any way you like.
The Pre comes with an easily removable battery -- not so with the iPhone. The Pre but doesn't support Flash video, which means no YouTube for you. But Palm has promised to support the Flash 10 Player by the end of 2009. Both phones can be synched with iTunes, but the Pre is restricted to tunes that are not DRM protected. But most songs on iTunes are DRM-free now, and of course you you can download MP3s from Amazon and other places. The Pre allows you to combine phone numbers, calendar entries and email from MS Outlook, Gmail and Facebook in one place and the multitasking WebOS allow multiple apps to be open at once.
It goes without saying that iPhone App store is way beyond any other competitor's. Palm has its own online app store but it will be some time before the applications can catch up to Apple. And of course the "There's an app for that" campaign is far superior to the creepy young woman on the Pre ads.
It still comes down to personal choice, where your loyalty lies and what you think about Sprint and AT&T. Talk to your friends, ask them to let you play with their phones before you decide on either the iPhone or Pre. Oh, and if you're a Verizon customer, both are non-starters.
Here's my bottom line... the Palm Pre is sleek, slick and designed well. But the biggest problem with the Pre is that it's not an iPhone. Apple has created a cult of coolness around the iPhone, while the features of the device speak for themselves. Any device that's serious about playing the role of "iPhone killer" will have to make coffee in the morning, take the dog for a walk, and predict winning stock market picks. I mean, the iPhone actually makes people smarter and sexier. How do you compete with that?
Got something to say about the Palm Pre? Post your comment or question below...
This article was posted by Bob Rankin on 28 Sep 2009
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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Palm Pre Versus iPhone (Posted: 28 Sep 2009)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved