Since the debut of the Treo 650, palmOne has been criticized for the slow pace at which this model has been picked up by wireless carriers around the world.
When the this device first debuted last fall, it was available from only one carrier: Sprint.
Over the following months, more U.S. carriers began offering this smartphone, and wasn’t until this spring that it made the jump to Europe by debuting in United Kingdom, France, Switzerland, and Italy. It came to Spain a few months later.
Although the pace has been slow, it has been steady. the Treo 650 was introduced in Australia, Mexico, and Argentina in May.
June saw releases in New Zealand and Hong Kong, and this smartphone debuted in Thailand just last week.
In addition to Sprint, the other U.S. carriers offering the Treo 650 include Verizon Wireless, Cingular Wireless, and EarthLink Wireless. T-Mobile U.S.A. is expected to begin offering it in the near future.
Not a Good Thing
The slow pace at which this popular device has become available worldwide hasn’t been good for palmOne. It is costing the company potential customers and, of course, revenue.
But palmOne has hardly been sitting on its hands. It is working to get this smartphone available in as many countries as possible as quickly as it can.
Nevertheless, the process of getting smartphones certified for use on the networks of wireless carriers always takes several months.
In March, the company opened an engineering center in Ireland, which focuses on speeding up the process of getting palmOne’s Treo smartphones approved for use on the networks of European wireless carriers.
An Overview of the Treo 650
The Treo 650 is palmOne’s latest smartphone, and has been designed to be both a handheld and a mobile phone in one.
Most users agree that viewing web pages on the Treo 650 is much more satisfying than on typical smartphones because it includes a 320-by-320 pixel display, a much higher resolution than most of its competition.
To make writing email and SMS messages easier, this model has a small QWERTY keyboard below the screen.
In addition, the Treo 650 includes Bluetooth wireless networking, so it works with wireless headsets. Some, but not all, versions of it support Dial-Up Networking (DUN) via Bluetooth, which means that they can be used as a wireless modem for other devices, like a laptop.
This smartphone runs Palm OS Garnet (5.4) on a 312 MHz Intel XScale PXA270 processor.
The Treo 650 has only 23 MB of built-in Storage capacity, so the device’s SD card slot is an important feature.
There are versions of this smartphone for GSM/GPRS/EDGE networks and for CDMA/1xRTT networks.
It has an 1,800 mAh swappable battery, which palmOne says is good for up to 6 hours talk time and up to 300 hours standby time.
The Treo 650 is 4.4 inches tall, 2.3 inches wide, and 0.9 inches thick (113 by 59 by 23 mm) and weighs 6.3 ounces (178 grams).
This new model’s built-in camera is capable of taking both still images and video. Maximum resolution is 640 by 480 pixels for photos or 352 by 288 pixels for videos.
More information on this smartphone is available on the palmOne web site.