I've never owned a PDA, so PDA use is not part of my current routine... But I plan to start grad school in the fall, and feel that a PDA (sometimes with portable full-size keyboard accessory) would be a nice way to have a portable computer for academic use (in class, in the library, on the metro/train, etc.) without having to lug around a laptop. I will attend a university that is full of deaf people, so text messaging, rather than voice phone, is the primary means of cross-campus communication. Below, I've outlined what I need, don't need, and equipment I'm currently researching. Any other tips or suggestions are welcome
WHAT I NEED, in order of priority:
1. email AND text/instant messaging service (I plan on heavy use, from a variety of locations, *not* just near wi-fi hot spots...).
2. user-friendly QWERTY thumb-keyboard.
3. can download/upload/synch with PC and Mac - for example, to back up my PDA to my desktop, view any problematic email attachments on a desktop, import/export documents.
4. can use with full-size portable keyboard accessory as needed.
5. text messaging compatibility with TTYs (text telephones that deaf people use) would be convenient.
6. Expandability is a plus (for extra memory, future functions not currently included - such as bluetooth, etc.)
7. web browsing -- fun, but not vital.
WHAT I DON'T REALLY NEED: Cell phone and digital camera.
I already have a cell phone on a Sprint family plan (shared with out-of-state relatives). I don't really need a cell phone in my PDA. If one happens to be included, so be it. I just received a digital camera as a gift, so no need for one embedded in the PDA.
MODELS I'M CURRENTLY LOOKING INTO:
- PalmOne Tungsten W -- has less memory and older version of Palm OS than the other two - how much does that matter?
- PalmOne Tungsten C -- are the email/web/text messaging functions useless if you are not near a wi-fi hot spot?
- Handspring Treo 600 -- will its tiny keyboard and slender shape make it clumsy to use as a text pager?
- Other suggestions??
Great question. I am experiencing the same dilemma. Several of my assoicates have opted for Dell Axim. For the price, they seem to provide what you need. However, I would like to go another route. I am looking at the Viewsonic v36. It offers similar features as the Jordana and IPAC at a lower cost.
Hi and thanks so much for replying. I checked online, and it seems that both the dell and the viewsonic lack the integrated thumb keyboard. That's key for me, since I intend to use the pda as a 2-way pager a good deal of the time, and don't want to use a stylus for that.
HP does seem to have a couple pocket PCs with integrated thumb keyboards, so I'll look into that...
Anyone know of other devices I should look into, and/or have opinions on the ones mentioned in this thread?
Hi again. I have a follow-up question for all of you out there:
Which devices do you feel have the most comfortable/user-friendly QWERTY keyboards? I really do want a device that has an integrated thumb keyboard (so I can text message, and email), but some of them are *so* tiny.