Palm VP Promises Treo 700p Update

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Some users of one of Palm’s most recent Treo smartphones have complained about problems with Bluetooth wireless networking.

Steve Sinclair, the Senior Product Manager, Palm OS Wireless Products has issued statement that addresses these people’s complaints. It says, in part:

Dissatisfaction with Bluetooth performance is clearly a top customer issue and our technical team has been working to overcome Bluetooth hardware limitations to deliver improved performance on the 700p. Tops among these is improving the stability of the Bluetooth connection between the phone and the headset/carkit. We hope to have a patch specifically available for Bluetooth early in the new year assuming it passes through all its certifications and is approved by the carriers. At that time, we’ll be able to publish an updated compatibility list, but to be upfront about this, the number of devices we have time to test is limited, so some users may still be disappointed that their headset or carkit isn’t listed. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t work – it just means we didn’t have the resources to test it.

Sinclair’s statement goes on to say:

Stuttering during music playback on the Treo 700p can occur when another app or system activity takes priority over the digital audio stream playback. For example if you have another app running in the background (like Versamail), it will kick off radio activity that takes precedence over the music playback activity, thus causing a stutter or skip. This is another area where we are making some changes in audio buffering although the stuttering won’t be 100% eliminated on this particular device. These changes will be released as part of a formal ROM update planned for availability in late Q1 2007.

A Lag When Changing Applications

Problems with Bluetooth aren’t the only things brought up in Sinclair’s statement. Specifically, some have complained about a lag when switching between applications.

This lag is noticeable for some because it is taking longer than desired for the databases of the previous application to close and the databases of the next application to open. Aside from working with 3rd-party developers to minimize the lag while switching to/from their apps, there isn’t much we can do to alleviate this as it is partly a result of the shared hardware design between the Treo 700p and Treo 700w/wx. I don’t want to sound like I’m dismissing the frustration this is causing for some power users, but it has not been reported by a significant portion of our customer base. We believe we still deliver the best mobile experience and while this particular device is perceived to be slower than previous models, it is still faster than other smartphones on the market. We hear the dissatisfaction and will try to continue to make improvements in this area on future products.

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