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Review: Palm Pre

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Replying to:  Dude.. wait... what?! by WhoDey   Jun 4, 2009, 2:36 PM

Re: Dude.. wait... what?!

by Rich Brome (Moderator)    Jun 4, 2009, 4:35 PM

I don't speak for Eric, but I do agree with him.

The webOS card system isn't difficult to master, but it does require an explanation and a small learning curve. Same for the gestures. If you didn't know about them, you'd probably never guess. None of it's difficult, it's just not as intuitive as the iPhone.

The iPhone is dead simple. Anyone can figure it out. There's only one button to learn, and it's the only button. Everything else is intuitive. They've simplified it so that you don't need any system at all (like cards) to manage multi-tasking.

Most people don't realize that the iPhone doesn't have true multi-tasking, because apps load very quickly, and load just the way you left them. You can leave the same three pages (tabs) loaded in the browser, and every time you "launch" the browser again, it pops up in less than a second, and those same three pages are there just as you left them. To a lot of people, that's indistinguishable from true multi-tasking.

Pressing the home button on an iPhone and then tapping an icon is actually fewer steps than swiping through several cards to find the app you want. And then you have to remember which apps are running and which aren't, close ones you're not using, etc. That's extra hassle compared to the iPhone.

Don't get me wrong. I do see the value in true multi-tasking, and I'd personally prefer a phone that had it. But I'm more of a power user (and it sounds like you might be, too.) Not everyone is like us.

Many, many people would prefer a phone that strikes a slightly different balance between power and ease of use. For those people, the iPhone is easier to use, and does everything they could ever want it to do. The card-based multi-tasking system of webOS doesn't deliver a lot of everyday value for that kind of user, while it does add a layer of complexity to the OS.

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