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HP Pre 3

 HP Pre 3 Discontinued
9th February 2011

The first two Palm Pre smartphones were very competitive when it came to hardware and software, but they never really met with much success in sales terms and by now are certainly looking a bit dated compared to other high-end rivals. Palm's owners, HP, have pumped a great deal of resources into improving this and have come up with the impressive new HP Pre 3.

Palm fans might be saddened to see the "Palm" name vanish from the device.. but on the other hand, they will probably very much like the HP Pre 3's hugely improved feature set.

Following the trend of putting bigger displays into smartphones, the Pre 3 now boasts a 3.6" 480 x 800 pixel display, and it also comes with a bigger QWERTY keyboard which will make using it just a little easier. All the usual features are here including WiFi (802.11a, b, g and n), GPS, an accelerometer and Bluetooth, plus the choice of 8GB or 16GB of internal flash storage. On the back is a fairly standard 5 megapixel camera capable of 720p HD video recording.

Inside is a 1.4GHz Qualcomm MSM processor, probably the fastest single-core CPU we have seen to date. This is combined with a large 512 MB of RAM for applications to work in. HP have wisely added a fairly large 1230 mAh battery to keep things going, and the whole package comes in at 156 grams.

HP said that this is a "world phone" available with both HSPA+ and EVDO, apparently in the same device.. at least in the US. European versions may differ from this as there's not much HSPA+ coverage and little need for the US-only EVDO standard.

 HP Pre 3 What made the old Pre phones different from the competition was the software - webOS is a very capable operating system with several very cool features that other smartphones cannot manage. With the latest release of webOS, version 2.1, HP have added some extra features and polish, making this a very credible alternative to the iPhone and Android handsets.

It remains to be seen if HP can take the old Palm smartphone line and make it a sales success.. at the moment the market share is very small indeed, and HP's dumping of the Palm name may prove unpopular. HP say that the Pre 3 should be available in the northern hemisphere's summer, but at the moment there is no exact availability date or guidance on price.

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HP (Palm) Pre 3 at a glance

Available:

Q2/Q3 2011

Network:

CDMA/EVDO + GSM/HSPA+

Data:

EVDO + GPRS + EDGE + UMTS + HSPA + WiFi

Features may vary between markets

Screen:

3.6" 480 x 800 pixels

Camera:

5 megapixels

Size:

Large slider
111 x 64 x 16mm / 156 grams

Bluetooth:

Yes

Memory card:

No (8GB or 16GB internal)

Infra-red:

No

Polyphonic:

Yes

Java:

Optional

GPS:

Yes

OS:

webOS 2.1

Battery life:

Not specified

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