Though some reviewers are a little tired of the Palm Pre since this is the third time they've reviewed it (once on Sprint, then on Verizon and now on ATT), I have to say this webOS phone brings a ray of hope and a breath of fresh OS to an otherwise fairly stagnant touchscreen smartphone line. Conspiracy theorists believe that Apple mandated a no-competition clause with America's largest GSM carrier, but perhaps that's not the case since the Palm Pre Plus on AT&T is certainly a worthy iPhone competitor.
The Pre Plus sells for $149 with a contract (and you get a Touchstone charger in the deal that normally sells for $49 separately), and $399 without a contract (that's $200 less that Verizon charges sans contract). No, you don't get free mobile hotspots as with Verizon because AT&T is more protective of their iPhone-saturated data network.
The Pre Plus has 16 gigs of storage, an ARM Cortex-A8 family CPU, a GPS that works with Google Maps and AT&T Navigator, a 3MP camera that can shoot VGA video and it has WiFi too. It runs Palm's WebOS which is one of the cooler new mobile operating systems, and thankfully there are now a couple of thousand downloadable apps to choose from in the App Catalog. Better yet, with HP's acquisition of Palm, we know they won't be going out of business any time soon and will have the development and marketing dollars they need to continually evolve WebOS. The Pre is well worth a look if you're tired of the iPhone or aren't into the Apple thing. After all, the Palm Pre Plus does have a fully multi-tasking OS, a removable battery (take that, iPhone) and it can do simultaneous 3G voice and data unlike the Sprint and Verizon versions.
We'll post our full written review of the AT&T nPalm Pre Plus tomorrow.
-------------------- Lisa Gade Editor in Chief, MobileTechReview