LAS VEGAS -- I've only been able to play with one for a few minutes, but after seeing Palm's ( PALM) impressive presentation of its Pre smart phone at the Consumer Electronics Show's opening day I feel fairly certain the phone could just be the device that gives Apple's ( AAPL) iPhone a run for the money.
Palm Pre: iPhone Killer?
It's not just one or two "killer" features, or the phone's overall size, or even the way the handset gently curves so that it fits snugly against your ear while placing the microphone right near your lips. It's the entire package. From the hardware to the software and everything in between it's almost as if the people at Palm studied every smart phone on the market and improved upon every single one of them.
The new operating system, called the Palm webOS, seems to be able to integrate everything you use in a smart phone seamlessly. From email (Microsoft Outlook, POP3, IMAP, Gmail, Yahoo, AOL) to instant messaging, to Wi-Fi, GPS and EV-DO 3G connectivity, to eight gigabytes of built-in storage, to the replaceable battery, to calendars and contacts, to the way your fingers slide from one application to another, and slide them off the screen when you're done with them, the Pre brings a new sense of oneness to Palm's small, portable, personal cell phone/computer. Don't get me wrong, the Pre isn't perfect. There's no removable memory card support, and the first phones will be sold by Sprint, ( S) which means they won't be usable overseas but, when taken as a whole, these shortcomings seem somewhat trivial.