Palm Pre finally arrived today

Palm launched its smart phone Pre today (June 6, 2009)

Alfred Rodriguez, 37, is perhaps the first person to get Palm Pre in Manhattan area.

With full touch (comparable if not better than Apple iPhone), better display, QWERTY keyboard and an elegant design this CDMA phone is tied to Sprint and sold only in USA. For $ 199 it is a great phone. In addition to hardware innovation, its software innovation (webOS and cloud computing for “sync”ing data) makes Pal Pre truly special.

A design team led by Micehelle Koh and her hand-picked designers led the user interface; Jonathan Rubinstein who was heading Apple Engineering division and credited with Apple iPod is the CEO of Palm today.

iSuppli expects Palm to see 1+ million phones in 2009; it will be higher if they can release a GSM version, open up WebOS and start an App Store (the way Apple and BlackBerry have done)

Palm is attempting Palm Pre to serve BOTH home users (Apple iPhone’s forte) and business users  (BlackBerry’s forte); we have to wait; whether it will be successful in meeting this goal or fail miserably to meet either of the segments will be known only over time.

Palm created PDA / PIM through Palm Pilot; Apple tried with Newton and failed!

With 26 million BlackBerrys and 21 million Apple iPhones around Palm will have to face severe competition. Apple & Palm competing firecely is good news for the consumers. 

Of course in the past few years, Palm was written off with shares coming down from a huge $ 650 in 2000 to nearly $ 3 in 2008. It is trading at $ 16 today.

It is an exciting week; Google announced 18 phone models powered by Android last Saturday; Nokia launched N 97 yesterday; today is Palm Pre; On June 8, 2009 (Monday) Apple in its World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC 2009) is likely to announce some new iPhone; BlackBerry is planning something next week. So Mobile Summer is hot indeed!

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