The Treo 650 has been my constant companion for the past year-and-half. (Come to think of it, it’s with me more than my wife is!) It’s my cell phone, my calendar and to-do list manager, it gives me turn-by-turn driving directions and Internet access wherever I go, and it even trounces me at chess. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want something better. The rumor mill has said for many months now that someday Palm would release a new and improved smartphone, the Treo 700p. Well, today is that day.
Looking at the specs, this new Treo is mostly identical to my old 650:
- Same screen (320×320 pixels)
- Same processor (312MHz Intel)
- Same operating system (Palm OS 5.4)
- Still no Wi-Fi support (a lot of people complain about this, but I’ve never understood the need for Wi-Fi on the Treo)
But there are some welcome differences:
- Four times as much memory (128 MB vs. 32 MB), although supposedly only 60 MB are available to the user
- Slightly better Bluetooth (version 1.2 vs. 1.1), which should mean slightly faster speeds and fewer interference problems. This will be nice to have when syncing and when using the Treo for dial-up networking.
- And speaking of dial-up networking, the 700p has a 1xEV-DO radio instead of the old 1xRTT, which means Internet access should be a lot faster. (This is probably the single biggest difference between the 700p and the 650.)
- Higher-resolution camera (1.3 megapixels vs. 0.3 megapixels), although this doesn’t matter to me since I always use a real camera for taking pictures
- Slightly different form factor (but identical to the previously released 700w). I like the bigger buttons and slightly modified layout, but I’m not sure about the squarish-looking keys.
- Built-in voice memo application (not sure whether I’ll use this)
All in all, there’s enough here to get me to upgrade, especially considering the improved Internet access speed. (It’s so nice when you’re stuck in a hotel room and you can connect your laptop to the net just by pushing a few keys on your phone.)My wife will now get my Treo 650 as a hand-me-down. Now, don’t complain; her old phone was a low-end Nokia candybar model with no Bluetooth support. With the 650, she’ll finally be able to use our wireless headset and avoid those neck cramps she gets during long calls.