Tuesday, January 27, 2009

TREO PRO Palm


USER-FRIENDLINESS MAKES IT STAND OUT

Some companies include a customised user interface sitting on top of the Windows Mobile operating system, but not Palm for its Trei Pro smartphone. INstead, you will see the regular Windows Mobile start page.

Surprisingly, this doesn't have to be considered as a drawback; this Palm can still stand out from the competition, and it lies in its user-friendliness. For example, I liked the convenience of being able to mute the sound and go online.

Probably the most frequently used buttons are the Ringer Switch at the top which made it easy to switch off all sounds, and the dedicated Wi-Fi button on the side which at just one push switches the Wi-Fi connection on (or off) and attempts to connect Wi-Fi network. So, going online is a quick and easy affair.

Another feature that I liked is, when in standby mode I can still see the time and date on the screen without having to make the screen brighter. And when there are missed calls or unread messages, an icon shows up.

Despite the lack of an alternative user interface and pre-installed software and applications are easy to find and equally fast to load up.

The overall design of the unit is also simple. It basically looks like a box with curvy edges and features a shiny piano finish for the body material. Below the 320-by-320-pixel display are the shortcut buttons: the Call button, shortcut keys for the Start Menu, Calendar and Message, and OK button, which also include closses an application.

In addition, there are two soft keys on the screen which lead to Contacts and the Web browser.

For navigation, the Treo Pro offers a few options. There is the regular five-way controller in between the shortcut buttons and a stylus for the touch-screen.

For input, there is also a Qwerty keypad, but its key are a tad small.

The volume button and speaker are on the side while the standard 3.5millimetre headset jack and microphone are at the bottom.

I found that I have to charge the battery every other day when used just for making calls and checking e-mail. When going online for a longer period of time, the battery had to be charged every day.

In terms of multimedia playback, it is average. The speakers are acceptable for a mobile phone. Then again, I could plug in standard headphones into the 3.5 mm jack for better sound.

The Treo Pro also offers a two-megapixel camera with 8x digital zoom, but, unfortunately, just average picture and video quality. You can change the picture size and quality and resolution, white balance, brightness, effects and metering mode as well as opt fopr either a two-second or 10s self-timer. You can also take videos and even a three-panel panoramic picture.

In a nutshell, although the Treo Pro does not have a customised homepage or software sitting on top of Windows Mobile 6.1, this doesn't put the device at a disadvantage.

Its easy-to-use interface and shortcut buttons and keys easily make up for the shortfall.

Sure, the battery life and keypad could have been better, but the device gets back to basics and takes care of what really matters - communication, going online at a push of a button, and fast access to the Web and e-mail. video

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