Think Twice Before You Add Palm Phones to Your Fleet

Mobile management is more than just picking the lowest prices or the best handsets. Consider the case of Palm products.

The Palm Pre was an extraordinary smartphone. The Pre Plus is even better. On the surface, both are worthy executive level phones with a unique OS and look that combined functionality and style. The Palm Pixi is a fun little phone for basic tasks – not great for core business activities, but it looks like might be good as a pure perk. Right now, the Pre and Pixi are incredibly cheap, so wouldn’t it keep costs down to pick them?

Palm Pre Mobile Management

The Palm Pre is a bargain for consumers -- but not the best for business.

Well I’ve given it away in the article title, but the sad answer is “no.” Yes, the Palm Pre is an excellent phone that carriers are offering for nothing on selected plans, but Palm is ailing. Its stock plummeted 19% on Friday March 19th, and may be worthless soon. CNN Money quoted one analyst as saying Palm is in a “death spiral.” This matters to end users because if Palm falls apart, that means you’ll be left with no upgrades, up to date support or new applications – and that’s not where you want to be with a contract. That’s a serious mobile management consideration.

What happened? Blackberries were the original smartphones before there was even a smartphone category, and are still the go-to phone for business use. The iPhone is in a league of its own. It can be customized for virtually any task by loading the right Apps, though many people probably use it for style and fun, not business. A past pioneer in the dying PDA category, Palm was ideally positioned to enter the smartphone category that replaced PDAs. Despite a few hiccups in the hardware and a foolish war with Apple over iTunes synching, the Pre looked ready to make Palm a third big player, bridging the gap between the too-serious Blackberry and the style-fixated iPhone.

Then Android hit. Palm couldn’t compete with an open OS that might not have been innovative, but was cheap to implement on a variety of handsets in all price categories, right up to the Droid, (Milestone in Canada) a phone obviously competing for the over $100 digital assistant niche. Android might be a poor fit for some handsets, but it will always cost less to implement, and the wave of Android phones creates a situation where once users will become familiar with the OS on one phone they’ll be comfortable with any handset that has an Android installation.

Palm’s tried to move forward with gaming and rich media applications in the Pre Plus and Pixi Plus, but even if they save themselves, they’re doing it by attacking a niche with little relevance to business users. Either way, Palm phones aren’t the right choice for your company’s mobile fleet, no matter how far their prices drop. Good mobile management thinks about your interests across a phone’s entire lifecycle – not just at the point of purchase.


  1. I’ve had my Pre given that shortly soon after release and am glad to find (through this forum) that I can now set a ring tone on incoming text messages and can research as a result of e-mails and such. Now is there any hope for an upcoming release through which I can search my calendar? Would make my occupation a lot easier, locating dates of final appointments. No other complaints, except that yesterday I was in and out of Sprint support (not unusual). I think I had been roaming, and looked at my calendar. Everything inside calendar was one hour earlier than what I had input. The clock was 1 hour early as properly. I used to be frightened to death–then, as soon as we got back into Sprint service once again, anything was normalized. Has this happened to any individual else?? Looking forward to answers, but please bear in mind, I’m no techie and speak English as opposed to technospeak.

  2. I need to say that my selection to invest in a Palm Pixi with Sprint assistance was both a rational and emotional just one. I mean, the Palm Pixi is gorgeous and functional. And coupled using the support good quality of Sprint, it looks almost nothing short of a revolution from the producing. I believe that Palm and Sprint have (almost) hit it off famously. I did a whole lot of exploration just before acquiring the Pixi but overlooked at lowest 1 point. The Pixi does not, yet, allow me synchronize my e-mails in between it and Outlook. As far as I’m concerned, this is a drawback I’m facing unless Palm comes up which has a answer rapidly. With my previous SmartPhone running a Windows OS, it was a snap to synchronize e-mails along with other information with one’s Pc. But Pixi’s inability to perform so is producing lifestyle a small complicated for me since I have to Bcc every e-mail, I send out, to my e-mail address after which manually transfer it on the ‘sent’ folder in Outlook. I hope Palm, or at lowest a third-party, will arrive up having a solution incredibly quickly which will very easily let me synchronize all my e-mails, and ideally all needed info, between the Pixi and my office Personal computer.