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Palm Treo 650 Device Spotlight

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Keep Coming Back Thu Aug 03, 2006 12:45 pm
Well, it seems that I always keep coming back to the Treo 650 no matter what other device, or devices, I try.

I recently tried a Cingular 8125 for about three months. While I liked the keyboard, WiFi, and web browsing experience on the 8125, I really missed the one-handed operation of the Treo 650. In addition, I missed the keyboard always being available. It is just quicker getting things done with the Treo.

Before the Cingular 8125, I tried two devices. I used a bluetooth enabled cell phone with a Palm Tungsten T5. While it worked, I really did not like carrying about two separate devices. It really was not worth the trouble, even though it was nice having the bigger screen on the T5.

Anyway, I am back with another Treo 650, and I am glad it's back!
Permalink | Discuss (0)

VersaMail and Button Assignments Thu Feb 09, 2006 11:44 am
If you use VersaMail very much, you might find this helpful, especially if you use multiple accounts.

You can map the e-mail button on your device to VersaMail. Then, whenever you want to go to VersaMail, you simply press the email button on your device. In addition, if you press the button while in VersaMail, it switches between your email accounts assuming that you have more than one account configured.

When making the button assignments on your device, you can press the button directly for three separate applications. We just configured one for VersaMail, but there are other button assignments that can be configured. In addition, you can press the option key before pressing one of the other buttons for quicker access to other applications, as well.

To map the buttons on your device, here a few screenshots that guide you through the process.

1. Go to Prefs
2. Go to Buttons
3. Map E-mail Button to VersaMail

-> ->
Permalink | Discuss (0)

Another ROM Update Experience Thu Jan 19, 2006 9:51 pm
I just got through performing a ROM update to my Treo 650, Treo 650 Updater 1.20 for Unlocked GSM Phones. Fortunately, everything went very well. There seems to be a host of improvements in this update, which are actually improvements. VersaMail is much more stable. Blazer seems to work better as well, but I still have some more testing to do. Also as promised, the voice quality is better. When you throw in better Gmail support, you really cannot go wrong with this update.

More about the ROM Update
Permalink | Discuss (4)

Power of SplashBlog Tue Oct 25, 2005 11:58 pm
I first saw SplashBlog in action at the 2005 PalmSource Developers Conference. At first, I really did not think it was a big deal. However, you will have to understand that I did not have a Treo 650 at the time.

Since I got my Treo 650, I have really been impressed with the power of SplashBlog. I have used it on countless occasions to keep in touch with my family. I am not one to travel a lot, but when I do, I like to keep in touch with my wife and three daughters. Not only can I talk to them, but I can take a picture and upload it to SplashBlog for them to view. While I could e-mail them a picture, SplashBlog makes it so much easier to do. Plus, I can manage the blog directly from my Treo.

What about cost? SplashBlog is free for one blog up to 100 pictures. If you want to store more than 100 pictures on your blog, it will cost $29.95 a year to subscribe to the SplashBlog service. That is a little over two dollars a month ($2.50 to be exact). Not bad? Right?

Well, please note that using SplashBlog will almost force you to purchase an unlimited data plan, so you might want to factor that in there as well. It can be very addicting and at 40-80 KB per photo, it can add up pretty quickly.

So go take SplashBlog for a test drive, but don't say that I didn't warn you!

By the way, SplashBlog does work with other Palm devices. If you have a way to get digital pictures onto your Palm device and have a wireless path to the Internet, you can SplashBlog as well.

Download and Try SplashBlog Here
Permalink | Discuss (0)

Time Without My Treo Tue Oct 25, 2005 1:59 pm
I have been without my Treo 650 since I sold it last Thursday, and I must admit that I really miss it. Fortunately, I will be getting another one this Thursday.

I really have to say that it has been a great device. It does a lot of things really well. Now, it has its little quirks, and it falls a little short in some of the bigger tasks that I throw at it, but all in all, it is a great device.

Since I have been without my Treo, I have gone back to using a cell phone and handheld combination. It is just not the same as having the Treo, and now I remember how cumbersome two devices can be. Don't get me wrong, a cell phone and a handheld work well together. However, I always have to carry both devices with me. I am always needing something from my handheld and something else from my cell phone. I cannot get by with just one or the other because neither one can cover what the other can do for me.

With the Treo 650, I can get by with one device. At times, it would be nicer to have a bigger screen and maybe a few other things, but all-in-all, it can do everything I need. For those special occassions, I still have my Tungsten T5.

Anyway, Thursday cannot come soon enough!
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Sold My Unlocked GSM Palm Treo 650 Tue Oct 25, 2005 1:38 pm
Last week, I sold my unlocked GSM Palm Treo 650. Before you wonder why on earth I would do such a thing, let me explain.

My company supports the purchase and use of Palm devices. However, the Treo 650 was a step in a new direction, and they were not willing to start purchasing these for employees. Thus, I purchased one for myself. Now, they support the Palm Treo 650, and they are willing to purchase one for me.

Thus, I sold my unlocked Treo 650, and they purchased a Cingular version for me this week. I should get it later this week. Hopefully, I will get it Thursday.

Now, what did I do with the money from the Treo 650 I sold? Well, I will save the answer for another post...
Permalink | Discuss (0)

Major Problem - Simple Solution Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:11 pm
Well, I had a problem with my Treo 650 this weekend. It turned out to be a manageable situation. At first, it was a major problem. Here is the story...

I was keeping my children occupied in the mall by taking pictures using my Treo 650. We left the mall, and we got in the car. I started to make a phone call and to my dismay, I could not get past the keyguard message that pops up when you turn on the device. I would turn it on, but it was ignoring my hitting of the center button to unlock the device. I tried the procedure over and over until I realized there was a problem.

I started to troubleshoot the problem with the obvious first step, a soft reset. After the soft reset, I realized the keyboard and all the buttons were still unresponsive. However, I could still navigate using the touch screen. I was a little relieved at this point since I could still navigate, but with all the buttons unusable, this was not an ideal situation. What next?

Well, I started to think of other actions that would cause the device to power up. I tried reinserting the SD card. When I did, everything worked perfectly and all the buttons and keys worked without any problems. Hooray! Unfortunately, after the Treo powered off, the problem reappeared. At this point, I was very relieved that I had a temporary work around for the problem. However, the problem still existed, and I was determined to find a solution. Besides, it could not be something real serious or reinserting the SD card would not have resolved the problem. Right?

Anyway, to make a long story not so long, let's just say a performed a number of things in order to resolve the problem. I finally figured out that the 'H' key on the keyboard was stuck. After freeing the sticky key, everything was back to normal. As it is most of the time, a simple solution to a seemingly major problem.
Permalink | Discuss (2)

Hiccup with AvantGo Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:10 pm
I use Avantgo on my Treo 650. For some reason, it stopped working last week. It would try to HotSync, but I would have to disconnect my Treo 650 in order end the HotSync. Otherwise, it would continue an endless HotSync. Fortunately, I was able to fix the problem, and everything is running as well as it was before.

Here is what I ended up doing to fix the problem:
  • Deleted AvantGo and AGConnect from my Treo 650.
  • HotSync'd my Treo 650.
  • Since I saved AvantGo content to my external memory card, I deleted all the files under \Palm\Programs\AvantGo on my external memory card.
  • Re-installed AvantGo on the Desktop. Note: You should not have to reconfigure anything.
  • HotSync'd my Treo 650 to Install AvantGo. Note: You may have to repeat this to download content.
I am not sure about the root cause of the problem, but this got me back up and going fairly quickly. I assume there was some corruption in the content files on my external memory card. Take care.
Permalink | Discuss (2)

Extra Hardware Buttons Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:09 pm
As one said, "No news is good news." I really have not had a lot to say because my experience with the Palm Treo 650 has been going really well. It is an excellent cell phone and an excellent PDA.

Something I think that keeps the Treo 650 ahead of the pack is the extra hardware buttons, more specifically, the home button and the menu button. Although seemingly small additions, these buttons, when combined with the keyboard and the 5-way navigator, make the Treo 650 the best one-handed device, period. 98% of the time I never have to touch the stylus. Coming from the Tungsten T3 and the Tungsten T5, I was a bit concerned about the absence of the status bar that was always available. It was real handy having those functions available no matter what you were doing. With the Treo 650, I truely have not missed the status bar. In fact, I wonder why other Palm devices do not have separate home and menu buttons. Something to think about...
Permalink | Discuss (0)

Battery Life - Part 3 Wed Aug 31, 2005 12:07 pm
I was able to conduct another battery test with my Treo 650 GSM, today. For this test, I setup TCPMP to repeatedly playback an AVI video file. The volume was set at 50%, the brightness of the screen was set at 50%. Bluetooth was on but not communicating with anything. In addition, the phone was on, but it only ringed once during the test. I let the call go to my voice mail. Except for the phone and Bluetooth settings, everything else was identical to the tests I conducted for other devices. Thus, I have included the results for the PalmOne Treo 650, PalmOne Tungsten T3, PalmOne Tungsten T5, Tapwave Zodiac 2, and the Dell Axim X50v.

Here are results for video playback:
  • PalmOne Treo 650: 8 hours 35 minutes
  • PalmOne Tungsten T3: 2 hours 10 minutes
  • PalmOne Tungsten T5: 3 hours 40 minutes
  • Tapwave Zodiac 2: 2 hours 50 minutes
  • Dell Axim X50v: 2 hours 35 minutes
Another test showing the impressive battery life of the Treo 650! It played the video continuously for over 8 hours! This will give you the ability to watch three or four movies with a single charge. Now, I realize the screen of the Treo 650 is smaller than the other models tested, so one has to take that into consideration. However, the ability to watch a number of movies without worrying about the battery is worth a lot to me.

Taking both tests into consideration (audio and video), it is possible to listen to music for several hours, watch a couple of movies, and still have enough power to make phone calls and check your e-mail. All this is a little ironic considering the Treo 650 has a user replaceable battery but really does not need one. Then, you have all the other devices that do not have a user replaceable battery that could definitely benefit from one.

By the way, the specifications on the AVI video file are as follows:
  • Audio Bit Rate: 96 kbps, Stereo
  • Audio Format: MP3
  • Video Bit Rate: ~300 kbps
  • Video Format: XviD
  • Video Size: 416 x 176
  • Video Frame Rate: 24 fps
  • Video Length: 2:50:07 hh:mm:ss
  • File Size: 494,052 KB
The video was converted using my DVD and the FairUse Wizard LE. Found out how, here.
Permalink | Discuss (0)

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