Those Flash videos and games that won’t play on iPhones and are hit or miss on Droid phones now work in the new Palm Pre 2.
The new Palm Pre 2 has embraced Adobe Flash. Thanks to its new operating system dubbed Web OS 2.0, Flash applications and videos function on the phone rather seamlessly without additional software, apps or tweaks.
According to Hewlett Packard which bought Palm back in April, the Flash capabilities are just the tip of the iceberg of what Web OS 2.0 can do. It has also pumped up the Palm’s multitasking abilities.
For instance users can pause a game, check email or read restaurant reviews without shutting down apps.
Keeping up with all of a friend’s information is also simplified. With a feature called Just Type, by typing a keyword or someone’s name, multiple options of emailing, updating a social network status, calling, texting or searching come up at once. Users “just type” out the desired action.
Technology Lifestyle Consultant and author of the Brotha Tech Blog Terrance Gaines finds the multitasking feature “smooth and attractive”.
“Multitasking on other OS (operating systems) like Apple’s iOS while just as fast, is not as intuitive,” says Gaines. “The less thought that goes into switching between applications, the more attractive (or sexy) multitasking will be to use.”
Gaines points out that Palm’s sleeker and upgraded look may also draw the attention of buyers.
But ultimately it’s all about the apps, not the operating system.
Currently the smartphone market is dominated by what Gaines calls the big three: Apple iPhone, Google Androids and the Blackberry. The iPhone and Android phones are the most popular because they offer a multitude of apps.
Notes Gaines, “In my opinion, apps are what make a good smartphone great, so the more developers willing to write apps for a certain OS, the more a brand can cement itself as the most popular.”
In the app battle, iPhone is apparently winning.
“Clearly, iOS (the operating system of the Apple iPhone) with over 200,000 apps in iTunes, makes it a force to be reckoned with. So HP Palm needs to make sure developers can see their ROI (return on investment) if they decide to write apps for Web OS 2.0.”
Palm has taken steps to court developers. Unlocked versions of the Pre 2 are available in the UK and the U.S for developers. That version is $499.99. The cellphone giant has also made its Apps Catalogue more user-friendly.
But can it take pictures, shoot video and make calls?
The Palm Pre 2 has a 5-megapixel camera that shoots video and still photos. It also comes with 16 GB of memory and a speedy processor. Currently Verizon is its lone carrier.
The first version of its Web OS allowed information from social networks, Google and Microsoft Exchange to populate in the phone and integrate into the contacts. This has been carried over. Synced calendars and instant messaging systems is part of the upgrade.
This further takes Palm to what it wants to be – a universal smartphone that connects people to each other in multiple ways easily.
Says Gaines, “People want to connect and more importantly, stay connected. If they get an email, IM, text, tweet, Facebook friend request, contact request from their website…whatever it is that their interested in, they want it (or want to know about it) now. Smartphones give users the ability to route all incoming traffic/messages to them in almost real-time. That gives people the feeling of being “in the know” and as a result, staying relevant.”
HP-Palm,”HP Introduces webOS 2.0, the Next Generation of Mobile Innovation,” Press Room
Paul A, “Unlocked Pre 2 Now Available in the U.S.,” The Official Palm Blog
Derek Kessler, “Palm Pre 2 made official,” Pre Central Net
John Paczkowski, “Palm Pre 2 Unlocked, Unleashed,” All Things Digital