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Palm Pre Plus review

Does the Pre Plus do enough to justify a re-release?

Our Verdict

Still a good smartphone thanks to the webOS, but in dire need of more than just a tiny overhaul

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 16 GB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 3 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 5 Hour
  • Screen Resolution : 480 x 320

View full specification

For

  • Great OS
  • Improved keyboard
  • More RAM
  • Better memory
  • Enjoyable gesture bar

Against

  • Not a lot of improvement in two years
  • Sharp rim
  • No Facebook chat
  • Hard to reach power button
  • No turn-by-turn navigation

The Palm Pre Plus comes with all the connectivity options that you'd expect from the modern smartphone. Wi-Fi 802.11b/g, HSDPA at 7.2Mbps, GSM, GPRS, Edge and integrated GPS, which works extremely well in Google Maps.

We shouldn't forget Bluetooth 2.1+EDR, but the handset we tested really struggled to discover other devices, and we were unable to make a connection.

The mobile broadband on the O2 network was very good in the areas we tested the device around London, never struggling for a connection, and it's pretty fast, too. Setting up Wi-Fi is straightforward and the Palm Pre Plus maintains signal very well.

The web OS browser is good. Pages load quickly and appear in full on the screen, but a quick double-tap on an area of the page zooms in nicely.

Palm pre plus

You can also pinch-to-zoom in and out of the page, although that doesn't reformat the page and text as well as it does on Android or iPhone and it doesn't have the speed or fluidity of those operating systems either.

Palm pre plus

The capacitive touchscreen is excellent in general, though, and allows you to be more accurate than on some Android phones like the HTC Hero.

Simply starting to type, within the browser, brings up the URL bar and offers Google and Wikipedia search as well as previous web history, while swiping the gesture panel to the left will take you back a page.

Palm pre plus

The application card system enables you to have multiple web pages open as application cards on the Home screen without having to work solely within the browser app.

Bookmarks, history and preferences can be accessed from the tab at the top-left corner of the touchscreen, but again, this leaves a very small surface area to make contact with and it's not something we always nailed first time.

We'd hoped to see Flash player installed in version 1.4.1 but that's still lacking at the time of writing, so no viewing BBC iPlayer content, and no plethora of web videos. But hey, it's not like Palm fans need to worry, the company doesn't want to bury Flash under a pile of rubble like some. It'll be here sooner rather than later.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Service ProviderAT&T
Input MethodQWERTY, Touchscreen
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBYes
Built-in Memory16 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA
GPS ReceiverYes
Product FamilyPre
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 1900
Rear Camera Resolution3 Megapixel
Phone StyleSlider
ColourBlack
Operating SystemPalm OS
Brand NamePalm
Battery Talk Time5 Hour
Product ModelPlus
Screen Size7.9 cm (3.1")
Screen Resolution480 x 320
Weight (Approximate)138.5 g
Processor ManufacturerARM
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, Instant Messaging
Call FeaturesCall Log, Caller ID
Height100.5 mm
Width59.5 mm
Depth17 mm
ManufacturerPalm, Inc
Product NamePre Plus Smartphone
Processor Speed600 MHz
Processor TypeCortex
Product LinePre
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part NumberATTPREPLUSBLK
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://euro.palm.com/uk/
Marketing Information

Expertly equipped and ready for anything

The Palm Pre Plus phone gives you what you need for work life, personal life, and everything in between. You get it all a large, vivid touchscreen along with a slide-out QWERTY keyboard in an elegant design. With always-up-to-date contacts and calendars, your favorite websites and apps, and even 3D games, it's a phone for your whole life.

Standard Memory512 MB