Anyone out there remember the Palm Pilot? Back in the late 90's it was the gizmo to own. A small (for the times) device it not only came with a built in contact list, calender and memo program but it also had lots of other neat applications (back then we still said the entire word). As the device evolved it got smaller and sleeker and its app catalog exploded with fun and relevant programs for almost any field. About the only thing the Palms couldn't do was act like a phone but unless you were a Blackberry user you didn't really care about that.
In the hi-tech world one either evolves constantly or dies a quick death. Such was the fate of the Commodore 64 in the late 1980's as Apple's Macintosh took over the home computing scene. Such was the fate of Palm. Late to the phone game Palm only realized inthe mid-00's that Blackberry was onto something when it combined personal data assistannts (PDA's) and phones. It came out with the Treo and then the Centre which were okay phones but the underlying operating system never really changed. Yes, the graphics resolution improved a bit and colour became a standard feature but overall it looked and felt the same as the original.
Then came the iPhone and Androids. Suddenly Palm was in huge trouble selling a phone with an antiquated operating system. Yes they had the app catalog but those programs also looked positively antique when compared to what Apple and Google were putting out.
Much too late Palm put out the Pre and then the Pre2. I owned a Pre2 and had high hopes it would revive the company. It was fast with great graphics and an intuitive operating system. Unfortunately it never took off. Palm was bought by HP which tried to make waves with the Pre3 and then just gave up on the cell phone business altogether.
So there I was with a Palm phone and it was a lonely experience. The app catalog numbered in the 1000's with only 2-3 new programs appearing a week, sometimes less. It was frustrating to read about all the new app's coming out but only for Apple, Android and usually Blackberry. It's an awful feeling to be left behind but I'd been with Palm since 1998. I was so reluctant to let go.
Ultimately I did though. I didn't want an iPhone or Android (I found the original Terminator movie frightening when I was a kid and he was an android) so I tried out the Blackberry Z10.
Now, full disclosure: I own Blackberry stock and I bought it on the hope that the Z10 would be a kick ass phone. I'm pleased to note that it is. Suddenly I'm working with a huge app catalog that is growing daily and constant updates to programs I have. As opposed to the lonely quiet world of Palm I feel like I'm back on the information highway again, not some information side road in the country.
But every so often I look at my old Palm, still sitting on my desk and wonder about what could have been.