Ex-Palm OS Treo users: Likes and Dislikes about the iPhone
I just posted in the thread asking which phone iPhone users were previously using and saw a good number of ex-Palm OS Treo users. I suspect that the forums here may have a larger number of us ex-Palm OS Treo users than other forums do due to the affiliation with treocentral.com. Anyways, as someone who was a long-time Palm OS user (and user of various Palm OS Treo models) who was, by and large, a fan of the original "zen of Palm" OS/GUI, I'm curious to hear what other ex-Palm OS Treo fans/users think about their transition to the iPhone. What do you like better? What do you miss? Where do you think Apple can/should improve things?
I created a separate thread about a week ago talking about one of the hack-style apps I miss from my Treo. I used Hi-Launcher and created a bare-bones "recently used apps" pop-up menu which allowed me to quickly switch between apps on my Treo. I really dislike having to go back to the Home screen on the iPhone in order to switch between recently used apps. I do like the fact that the iPhone (which I understand may be related to the 3.0 upgrade) does a better job of caching and multitasking than the Palm OS Treo. So, for example, I can start to download a web page, go to the home screen, do something else, go back to Safari, and the page is now completely downloaded and doesn't auto-refresh it, nor do I have to sit and wait while it takes time to redraw the page from its cache. I also access my work's email via a web interface and on my Treo it would force me to re-enter my username/password every time I left Blazer and went back to it, whereas the iPhone remembers this for me (probably only so long as I keep the page open - but that's not a problem). If only Apple would build in a quickly-launchable recently-used apps list, that would make it even better. Better yet, I'd really like to see Apple allow developers to create all manner of hack-style apps and approve them for the App Store.
One thing I find myself using my iPhone for that I never really bothered to do much with my Treos is listening to music and podcasts. There are two reasons for this: First, Handspring/Palm made things difficult by not equipping the Treos with a standard 3.5mm jack. At one point I got one of those adapter cables for my Treo 600 and the jack ended up breaking after a while (a common problem). So, after that, I was gunshy about even trying it on my 700p. The other reason I take advantage of podcasts (specifically) on the iPhone is the fact that I can jump into the iTunes store on the iPhone and find and download a ton of free podcasts right there. No need to use my laptop. That said, I've had problems with my iPod Touch where downloading a certain podcast that way often resulted in it getting cut short. Haven't confirmed that yet with my iPhone so I'm not sure if I'll hit that problem still (and I don't know what the root cause was/is anyway).
Last edited by Scott R; 07-07-2009 at 11:17 AM.
- 07-07-2009, 11:58 AM #2
I am contemplating the switch from my 755 to an iphone in the coming months. I believe I mentioned previously two items I will miss. The first is a sync with outlook of my task list. I rely on this, and currently there is no direct sync of the tasks to the iphone. The second is the ability to attach documents/photos to an e-mail sent from the iphone. Currently, I use chatter for this, and it works perfectly.
I won't miss the slugishness of the phone when it is checking mail, nor the occasional hard reset (as happened today for no reason).
- 07-07-2009, 12:00 PM #3
I came over from Sprint and the 755P. Two major reasons I left Palm fir the iPhone were Sprint and BT. Sprint's coverage in my area was not that good as was getting worse. BT on my 755P was terrible. Using a BT earpiece was next to impossible. The two problems were totally eliminated when I switch and for these facts alone I am a very happy camper.
Now I am not a power PIM user. I use PIMs all day. I run my own business with my iPhone, but some people are very serious about PMIs. I am not near that organized/AR. Give me date/time/what I need to do and I am good. That being said I have been able to replace all of the apps on my Treo with apps from the App Store. Plus some!
I really liked my 755P but my iPhone has become so much more than my Treo was or could have been for my usage. With MoMe pushing Calender/Contacts/email to my iPhone and Vice Versa, plus Appigo ToDo/QuickOffice and other apps, I feel I have the perfect business smartphone for Me. YMMY.
- 07-07-2009, 12:05 PM #4
Recently used apps would be great. Maybe just show up on spotlight without typing anything. I just double tap home button to open spotlight.
Wouldn't mind a clipboard to put pastings on..numbered. And perhaps when you go to paste something, "paste1" "paste2" "paste3" pop up.
- 07-07-2009, 12:08 PM #6
- 07-07-2009, 01:14 PM #7iPhone Newbie
- 10 Posts
About those meeting alerts.....
After much delay and reviewing the Palm Pre, I finally surrendered after years with Palm and gave up my 755P for the iPhone 3GS. Overall I am very happy I finally made the switch, waiting for Verizon to support wifi on the Palm (or any other decent platform) was no longer worth it. The ringtones are not loud enough and I was missing calls so I finally ported over my Treo ringtone and pumped up the volume to solve that problem. The guys in the Apple store said "that's just wrong" when they heard my phone ring while I was there but hey, a man's gotta be able to recognize that his phone is ringing. The only thing I have been unable to adapt to is the weak and non-recurring alerts for meeting notices. Are you telling me this is the best Apple can do after 2+ years? Come on Apple, you gotta fix this..
- 07-07-2009, 02:37 PM #8
I want to also add the use of multiple signatures would be missed.
- 07-07-2009, 02:39 PM #9
- 07-07-2009, 03:08 PM #10
- 07-07-2009, 04:02 PM #11
I am much happier than I'd expected to be with the iPhone. However, the calendar alerts are nonexistent even with 3rd party help. There needs to be a real alarm that is repeatable - I'm not so concerned about the sound as long as it is loud. I'm spending way too much time looking at my calendar now to make sure I don't miss something.
- 07-07-2009, 04:21 PM #12
- 07-07-2009, 05:27 PM #13iPhone Nanite
- 6 Posts
iPhone is harder to develop for than the Treo
I used several Treo Palm models over about three years (Treo 300, 350, 550) and was very happy with the OS and applications. However, syncing to my Mac was always problematic - often the syncing didn't run to completion. Something got corrupted early on and the thing never truly worked properly afterwards, despite many attempts at correcting this. Finally, I switched to the iPhone when I could see there were plenty of aps coming out for it. I was worried about the keyboard - I liked the touch feedback of the Treo keyboard, but I have to say that I use my iPhone for far more applications now than I ever did with the Treo. And syncing via iTunes is a charm!
My biggest beef about the iPhone is that I dabble in programming on my Mac (mostly Java) and I did develop some code for the Treo. I've looked at the development kit for the iPhone, but it is significantly more complex for an amateur like me and probably means that I will never code for the iPhone. Too bad, as the platform is superb!
- 07-07-2009, 05:29 PM #14
A few additional comments...
- The copy/pasting of photos is neat. Apple got a lot of flak for taking so long to do copy/paste, but their implementation of it allows for copying stuff besides text (e.g., photos) whereas the competition does not. That said, it does seem unfriendly for them to not have an "add attachment" button within the email app which also allows for browsing through/adding photos.
- The notification system is rather lame. I hear a chime and don't even bother checking my phone because it's usually an email. When I turn the phone on, there's no special indication that anything particularly new came in or what it was. I like how the old Palm OS had a flashing asterisk and tapping on it would show a list of your last several notifications. The Google Android pull-down list of notifications is quite slick and should be copied by Apple.
- I don't much care for the iTunes software. I don't know where to begin. Today I was searching for apps and kept getting an error. Every fifth time or so it might work. Not sure if this was a local network issue or because the iTunes store was just busy. And the iTunes layout basically look like a cluttered display of tiled apps/ads all over the place. They not only need categories implemented within the iPhone OS/GUI itself, they also ought to better design the layout/categorization of things in the iTunes store GUI. I'm also still trying to figure out how to have a central music library stored on the external hard drive hooked up to my desktop computer which the local iTunes app on my laptop shows updated live. I rip a CD/add some MP3's to the hard drive on my desktop, then launch iTunes on my laptop and it doesn't show the newly added music without me selecting File > Add folder to library... from the drop-down menu.
- 07-15-2009, 10:03 AM #16
Three issues for me:
1. There is no way to set reminders for birthdays that I include with a person contact information.
2. No way of easily setting up meetings that occur periodically like the first Monday of every month.
3. Spotlight does not seem to search the field note within a contact.
- 07-15-2009, 12:11 PM #17
I agree with the other posts about notifications and Calendar lameness coming from PalmOS. Lots to like about the iPhone but those areas felt like a sacrifice. It is odd to have so few features in these areas. I miss HiLauncher as well! Actually any way to just go from one program to another. But, I find the iPhone 3G to be fast enough at getting to the Home screen and then launching apps from my first screen or two that it's not a big deal. I notice that apps 3 or more pages back don't get used as much and I think I just forget about them :-O PalmOS had a different "feel" in the Contacts app, but I'm getting used to the iPhone. Voice Dialing with the 3GS will be a nice features well to further separate the devices... I know there's aftermarket stuff for PalmOS, but I tried several and personally had minimal success so gave up. I miss being able to tweak system settings with programs like Butler and Profiles. The Apple patents recently discussed in the forums leave me hopeful something like Profiles is forthcoming.
For ScottR, I appreciate your comments about the customizability of PalmOS and I liked that a lot. I do think that Apple's more restrictive approach is part of why the iPhone has been, at least for me, significantly more stable as a device than my Treo/Centro ever was. Resets were a common phenomenon with my Treos and I have had zero with 7 months of iPhone use which is an enormous reduction. The device just seems more stable to me than PalmOS devices were... unless I left it with no third party apps on board which basically would have negated a lot of the benefit of PalmOS in the first place!
- 07-15-2009, 09:12 PM #18
ok so I've been a palm guy since 1996. Palm IIIXE, Palm V, Treo 600, Treo 650, Treo 700P, Treo 700WX (ok win mob sucks!) Palm TX, and now blackberry and ipod touch. (contemplating Palm Pre, but Pre suffers same fate in my mind that iphone does.
My main issue is this... I liked that Palm felt more like a computer than iphone/ipod touch does. I say this for a number of reasons
1) I could create network connections and do bluetooth DUN to get internet access on my. while my blackberry supports this I can't get my iPod touch to connect DUN.
2) Palm had file system access. PRC, PDB files... I knew how the thing worked. iPhone and Palm Pre are locked up so tight I feel like I can only do what the magic developers let me do.
3) QUICK access to everything with hard keys. a calandar, email, phone, home button... HARD KEY! it was one simple action and BAM I'm in the calandar. touch interface is just too much work to get into the calendar. I couldget to 8 applications with hard keys and option key without even looking at the device, and then when I lifted it to look at it, it was already where I wanted to be.
4) integration of apps... palm had awesome "home screen" kinda things. shsh.com with takephone, 2day, 4cast provided great one screen access to lots of info across the application. with iphone I have to look at a stupid picture of a fish or whatever. Palm pre has coral, whatever! I want a home screen to integrate my IM, new messages, (have to give props to win mob which was good on this too, but sucked in all other ways).
- 07-15-2009, 09:52 PM #19
Ex-Palm OS Treo users: Likes and Dislikes about the iPhone
There are many things that I miss about the Palm platform. Up until last month I was still running a Treo 680 that reset daily - multiple times.
It is hard to believe that there has not been a shopping list application created that works as well as Handy Shopper. I am trying to get by with SplashShopper on the iPhone 3Gs. The multiple options to display lists and compare prices has not been matched. Oh and set ALARMS on specific items.
Key Suite just worked. If there was a data field in Outlook (Contacts, Calendar, Tasks, Notes, Journal) it showed up on the Treo. Categories and Reminders. If it was categorized in Outlook I would see it on the Treo. A reminder would display for important tasks, with the option of a follow-up in 15 minutes. Contact Reminders, Task Reminders, Calendar Reminders.
SnappperMail Ok so it was not push, but able to have different accounts different signature lines. I was using VersaMail with BlackberryConnect for office email. This allowed for a separate alert tone for work (VersaMail) and personal email (SnapperMail).
Keyboard shortcuts. Although some of this functionality was removed in the 600/680 transition (cannot recall). I loved the idea/implementation of "ds" inserting a date stamp and "dts" a date and time stamp. I think this was customizable on the 600.
Search. Yes the 3Gs searches, but not third party apps. The Treo searches everything.
The biggest disappointment has been notifications, Outlook Task syncing, and a day home/view page.
Nearing the end of my 30 days, but the speed, email rendering (love html), and iTunes integration will keep me in the iPhone camp for now. Been reading about the issues on the Pre. Too early on the new platform. Maybe an iPhone jailbreaking session is on the horizon.
Handspring Visor -> Treo 180 -> 600 -> BB Curve -> 680 -> BB Bold -> 680 -> iPhone 3Gs
- 07-15-2009, 10:04 PM #20
- 07-15-2009, 11:12 PM #21iPhone Nanite
- 7 Posts
I had used a Palm device for over 10 years and finally made the switch to the iPhone 3GS. I was sick of waiting for Verizon to get a phone that wasn't junk (I won't use Windows Mobile and Blackberry is complete junk). The Pre looked nice, but the build quality is nothing compared to the iPhone. I will also never switch back to Sprint as they have no coverage in many of the places I go. Lastly, 90% of the people I know at work have an iPhone, so it seemed logical to copy them. Ain't peer pressure the best?
I've had a Palm III, a Samsung Palm OS phone, a Treo 650 and a Treo 700p. One of the nice things was that applications I had downloaded or purchased years ago still worked. I had a nice collection of usable apps. However, the PalmOS platform was really never capable to do all the things a smart phone should be able to do. Any kind of background apps were a hack and caused random resets. Lack of WiFi (now that I have it on my iPhone I can't believe I went so long without it on my Treo). Bluetooth support was atrocious. It just made the random resets more frequent when I had my headset turned on.
The iPhone has a nice clean interface. When it comes to apps, only the high end apps really cost a lot. I remember games like Bejeweled costing $15 for PalmOS. I have a lot more fun, cheap games for the iPhone than I ever did on my Treo.
That all being said, there are some features that I really miss. Palm had (late in the game) added a recent apps feature. I used that quite a bit. The physical keyboard was also a nice feature. The other thing I miss is removable storage. It was very convenient to have all of my pictures on an SD card and be able to take it out and print them off at Walmart if I needed some. I always had that SD card with me, and never had to worry about grabbing some other removable storage. In contacts, I could just start typing someone's name and easily pull up their info. With over 200 contacts, the interface is very much lacking on the iPhone.
MMS worked great on my Treo, and I'm surprised that it still hasn't been implemented yet with AT&T. Why is this so hard?
Calendar reminders would reremind me if I didn't clear them. This was highly useful on the Treo.
The vibrator in the iPhone is very very weak. I almost never feel it for reminders or received messages.
The removable battery on the Treo saved my life many times on long trips. A car charger is a must for the iPhone as is keeping it charged at work. My Treo would go three or four days when new, and two to three after three years on a single charge. Granted, the capabilities of the iPhone are so much more, but still.
Tethering! I decided to make the switch to the iPhone since it has been promised. Of course, it's yet another thing that's yet to be implemented, and when it finally comes I'm afraid it's going to be at a price point that I won't be willing to pay. If AT&T is listening, $10-$15 for occasional use should be the highest they should charge.
It would be nice if the status bar could tell me when I have email or other messages, or even some kind of notification when I hit the big round button, but without having to unlock the phone. Would be nice if that also told me the date in addition to the time.
It seemed like Palm developers could do almost anything they wanted. Even though background apps weren't supported, they were hacked in. Apple limits developers too much. There was no entry fee to develop for the Palm. There was no App store approval process that developers had to go through. Granted it was harder to find quality apps for a good price for PalmOS, but anyone could do anything they wanted.
All that being said, I'm really pleased with my iPhone and Apple. Apple has proven that they will continue to develop and extend the platform, add new features, fix bugs, and generally make people happy (even if they have to wait for features). Palm would take forever to fix catastrophic bugs and pretty much abandoned all PalmOS users. It remains to be seen how things will go with the Pre.
Features I'd like to see on the iPhone... Let the user decided if they want multitasking. Just implement it, and if we are running down our own batteries, it's our fault, not Apple's. Give us an easy way to switch to recently used apps.
- 07-16-2009, 12:07 AM #22iPhone Beginner
- 94 Posts
- 07-16-2009, 10:52 AM #23iPhone Newbie
- 13 Posts
I have used Palm/Handspring products for about 15 years, beginning with a Handspring, now using a Palm Centro, will be switching to iPhone in October when my ATT upgrade is available. The biggest concern to me is not having my Outlook task list. It's my brain! I don't know what I need to get done at work without it! Any suggestions as to the best option for this need?
- 07-16-2009, 11:21 AM #24
I was a LONG time Treo user (and Palm device before that), moving from the 300 to the 600 to the 650 ending with the 755. Sprint put me through PURE hell when they moved my # off the 650 (With Earthlink Wireless) back to Sprint by porting it and then assigning it to their general pool, and finally giving it away to someone else. They only finally figured it out when I gave up on my old #, called in and cancelled my 755. I went to to the iphone 3G thinking AT&T couldn't possibly be worse at customer service (They try hard too though).
My biggest complaint is the syncing of my calendar was/is such a pain. When I got the iphone, I *FINALLY* got it syncing with my work calendar by:
Adding Google Sync to my Work laptop, then using the Exchange sync in the iphone to sync up with that... That was the only way I found to keep it all in sync since the Iphone wouldn't support an exchange calendar (never mind the ads that said it was business ready at the time were what made up mind - DAMN LIES)
Then about 6 weeks ago I made the move to Mac OS X (and have happily combined 2 Windows machines and 2 linux workstations into ONE 17" MBP). I love the Mac OS, but am back to having issues with keeping my work schedule synced on the iphone. I am an IT Architect, and I am on multiple projects all day, multiple calls, calls with very little notice, etc. I need my phone to BEEP at me about calendar... Otherwise I miss calls, etc.
So now I can go pay for a $65 program (spanning sync) for something my TREO's DID OUT OF THE BOX 9 YEARS AGO!!! Fer chrissakes Apple.
Other than that, I love the iphone... WAY better Web experience than any TReo ever was.
- 07-16-2009, 01:21 PM #25