Roy Schestowitz

Review of Palm


I am probably too young to know how clumsy and slow aged computers actually were. One thing, however, that has remained an expectancy for decades, is that computers belong in a room and they are devices to be accessed and used for long batches of tasks. At the same time, some tiny and more quickly-accessible devices like digital watches and calculators emerged. It wasn't long before they began to assist scheduling as well, in the form of diaries or multiple alarms. In 1995 I had a Casio scheduler that could do all of the organisational task handling, yet it was too unreliable, the means of display were poor and data transfer to a PC was an arduous chore. I think that the mergence of cellular phones encouraged development of faster, higher capacity and smaller computation units; today we can see them all around us. Very many companies can assemble small parts like a Motorola fireball processor, some memory and of course the plastic or metal which sits on top of it all. The question is: which is the one device that is best to use? Here I argue that Palm is an ideal choice when compared with smart phones and Pocket PC (WinCE-powered devices).

My opinion is rather biassed because I dislike Microsoft, I dislike mobile communication that is vocal and I have not tried on a permanent and continuous basis anything apart from Palm. Usually, the other options like the use of a cellular phone just did not appeal enough for me to become dependent on them.

The next point to raise is that PalmOS have recently lost a fair share of users to Pocket PC. This trend is not a suprising one because many people use what is compatible with their home computer and what they are very familiar with already. However, here are the strong point of Palm which I suspect will retain its strong position.

  • Data durability - it is very hard to lose information once it is registered onto the device, even after a forced reset.
  • Stability - the operating system is not as prone to crash as Windows is. Soon enough, PalmOS might also build on Linux. This can only make everything better.
  • Simplicity - the simple built-in application are usually all that is necessary while the extra bell-and-whistles remain unavailable. This aids new users, increases speed and keeps distractions at a minimum.
  • Size - this positive aspect is becoming a decreasing factor as Dell and HP change the size of their product (see, for example, the earlier models of the iPaq). Nonetheless, Palm-powered devices tend to be small and sometimes foldable.

To say more on the importance of Palm's survival, for product support in the future, this issue is key. If Palm loses its share at the current pace, it might take at least 10 years for production to halt. This is far more than the life cycle of any technological tool and so the threat should be ignored.

This page is intended to be extended in the future.

Related Pages: Review (Critique) of Windows

This page was last modified in December 2004, Manchester Airport Maintained by Roy Schestowitz