Palm Treo 755p Review

by AWright Reads (142,595)

Since the introduction of the Treo 680 and Treo 750 models in the US, other Treo users have been a bit jealous of the refreshed design.

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While the decreased battery life that accompanied that design change gave some solace, the fact of the matter is that many Treo 650 and 700p users were looking for something a bit more refreshed, and the 680/750 fit that mold.

And now there’s an additional model that does so, too. The Treo 755p addresses the look and feel department, but the surprising addition of a higher capacity battery and EV-DO speeds makes this model an interesting upgrade option for many a Sprint Treo follower.

This new device seems to sit right in between the 680 and 750 in terms of what it is and what it can do. It feels almost exactly the same in my hand as the 750 – mainly because of the rubberized paint. It slopes at the bottom the same as the 680 though, making it a bit easier for my long thumbs to hit the bottom keys.

As a Phone

As a phone, this Treo performs just as well as the 750 and 680 do. As the 755p keeps the same user interface as the 700p and 650, the usability is simple and easy to pick up.

Voice quality matched that of the 680, with calls being extremely clear on both ends. I had no reports of fuzziness in my voice whether in a Sprint area or roaming on Verizon’s networks.

Contact integration is the same as previous Treos, as well. The ability to dial or do a contact search from the dial screen is as simple as dialing should ever be. The 755p also offers the after-call task ability of asking if you would like to add that number to your contacts if it is not already there. Simple, but something that comes in handy pretty often if you make a lot of voice calls.

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Messaging is handled by the same application as is on the Treo 680. Threaded chat, support for Sprint’s Picture Mail, and vCard sending/receiving is all present.

Overall, I saw nothing that stood out with the 755p as a phone. It did the job and simply. Granted, I would have preferred lighter weight, but the Treo isn’t designed to be a simple phone. As a communicator it needs to last the entire day (or a few), and does so fairly easily.

As a PDA

As a PDA, or data device, the Treo 755p follows the same formula that previous Treos have, with simple navigation and few taps to get to applications and data.

Nothing significant has changed with the Garnet OS (formerly Palm OS Garnet) in many years; therefore there is nothing additional to any of the built-in applications on the 755p. This makes it 755p easy to pick up for previous Treo users, but those coming from other devices might have a small learning curve.

In addition to the built-in PIM applications (Calendar, Contacts, Memos, and Tasks), the 755p comes with Bejeweled, Documents To Go 8, VersaMail 3.4.5, Google Maps, Pocket Tunes 3.0.9, and Blazer 4.5 (Palm’s web browser). I would have expected the latest versions of some of the listed applications, but for one reason or another they were not included with this model.

A lot of your interaction with this device is through its keyboard. The Treo 755p’s is similar to that found on the Treo 680 and 750 models. Compared to the Treo 650 and 700p models, the 755p features slightly smaller but more ‘domed’ keys. I found the ease of typing the same as with the 680.

The soft touch paint made a real difference in how it felt in my hand while typing. I never felt as if this smartphone would slip out of my hands when composing emails or text messages.

Like the phone aspects, the PDA aspects leave little to complain about. Application performance was snappy except for occasional delays when coming out of Blazer to the main applications screen. Large documents and emails were handled well, with nary the slow down that the 680 has.

Treo 680 vs. Treo 755p
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Other than wishing for a more up to date suite of applications, the 755p is well equipped as a means to keep you connected and organized.

Bluetooth

The 755p uses Bluetooth version 1.2, and it supports the following profiles:

  • Dial Up Networking (BT DUN)
  • Headset
  • Hands-Free
  • OBEX File Transfer (but not FTP-like transferring of items)

Overall performance was good. As with other Treo devices, setting up Bluetooth and pairing with other devices is a breeze.

Like the Treo 680, BT DUN is not a separate option in the Bluetooth application but is ready to go as soon as the 755p’s Bluetooth is turned on, making it easy for you to use this smartphone as a wireless modem for your laptop.

For such a device, one would expect A2DP to make an appearance here, but that was not the case. That means no Bluetooth stereo headphones.

HotSyncing your data with a PC over Bluetooth is faster than with the 650, and is comparable to the 680.

Camera/Camcorder

The 755p features a 1.3 megapixel camera/camcorder module. Like the Treo 680 and 750 models, the camera sits in the rear of the device and near where you would place your fingers.

The camera interface is the same as what is found on the Treo 680. Simply put, you get buttons to take a picture and whether to set the zoom 1x or 2x. Nothing complicated there.

Shutter speed is increased, and the default setting is that the shutter sound is not made.

The Camcorder is listed as a separate application but can be accessed from the Camera application. Videos are recorded at 320-by-240-pixel (QVGA) resolution. You can save videos and images either to internal memory or to a miniSD memory card (up to 4 GB supported).

Overall, both the camera and camcorder are suitable, but not groundbreaking. Both images and videos created on the 755p are easily able to be sent via email or MMS (Sprint’s Picture Mail) with one click from the camera screen.

Sprint Extras

Per what usually happens in Palm’s themed carrier releases, there are some exclusives to the 755p that are not present on other Treo models. Some of these are:

  • Colors of deep maroon or midnight blue for the device’s casing
  • Downloads: an application that takes you to a Sprint download page to download items such as ring tones, call-back tones, screen savers, and applications.
  • IM: Sprint’s Mobile Instant Messaging application that connects you to AIM, Yahoo, and/or Windows Live Messenger. You can be logged into to all of them at the same time and the application will run in the background giving notifications when new messages come in.
  • On Demand: a rebranded version of Handmark’s Pocket Express which gives access to news, TV listings, maps, and other information.
  • Sprint Store: a bookmarked link to (another?) wireless-accessible Sprint store.
  • Sprint TV: a mobile television service that shows clips and live TV formatted for the Treo’s screen. Choices range from sports to music to cartoons to movies to shorts and more. Requires a subscription to the Sprint Power Vision service, and seems well worth it if you want to enjoy TV on the go.

A few other applications that appear on the 755p include Get Good (for Good Mobile Messaging) and Get Nuance (a voice control application).

Conclusion

When I first unboxed the 755p, I was mostly underwhelmed. I saw a similar device to my 680, and expected only that the faster EV-DO speeds would just make a small difference.

What I found, though, was that the having the increased speeds — and a battery that could keep up with it — made for a much more pleasant device.

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While the 680 seems to be geared towards those who are just getting into the mobile lifestyle, the 755p seems to be for those who are in it and already know how they want to use their device.

The multimedia abilities and handy form factor lend to the 755p being usable for more than just a casual Web romp or music session. It can be pushed and then respond quite well.

So is it worth an upgrade over the 700p or 650? I think so. Most of those who have the 650/700p models who handle the 680/750 remark on how a device that isn’t (by the numbers) a lot smaller feels a lot smaller.

The price might be a turn off for some, but if you are using a 650 or 600 and looking for a reason to upgrade, the 755p is a good buy and will make for a solid mainstay in your mobile computing adventures.

Price

The 755p will be available mid-May at Sprint retail stores and Palm’s web site.

It will sell for $280 with a $100 rebate, plus $50 instant savings for those who buy on the Web and two-year service agreement. It’s base price will be $580 for those who are not signing a new service contract or don’t qualify for any rebates..

Specifications

Operating System: Garnet (Palm) OS 5.4.9
Processor: 312 MHz Intel XScale
Display: 320-by-320-pixel touchscreenD
Memory: 128 MB RAM with 62.8 available to users
Size 4.4 inches tall by 1.9 inches wide by 0.6 inches thick
Expansion: miniSD card slot with support of up to 4 GB cards, minSD cards with SDHC support
Docking: Palm’s Athena Connector
Communication: Dual-band CDMA with EV-DO Rev. 0, Bluetooth 1.2
Size and Weight: 4.4 inches by 2.3 inches by 0.8 inches and 5.6 oz.
Audio: standard headset jack; speakerphone; microphone; earpiece
Battery: 1600 mAh removable and rechargeable battery
Camera: 1.3 megapixel; Camera/Video Recorder
Input: QWERTY keyboard, Treo standard keys
Other: Documents To Go 8, Microsoft Direct Push Email

 

Photo Gallery

 
Treo 680, Treo 755p, Nokia N95
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  Treo 680, Treo 755p, Nokia N95
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Keyboard Backlight and Chat Application
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  Rear View with Camera
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Updated Information

According to a recently updated Palm Knowledgebase article, the 755p can use 4GB miniSD cards and SDHC (secure digital high capacity) memory cards.

Related Information

 




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