Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 3rd Jun 2014 18:24 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

My love and appreciation for Palm OS is somewhat obvious around these parts, culminating in the detailed Palm OS retrospective I wrote a little over a year ago. I consider Palm OS to be the shoulders on which all subsequent mobile operating systems are built, and I believe it would do the current technology press and users a world of good if they acquainted themselves with this prescient masterpiece.

That being said, with Palm OS being old and dead, the only way to experience it is to get your hands on a real device on eBay or its local equivalent in your country of residence. If you go down this route - which I strongly advise everyone to at least look into - try and go for the ultimate Palm device, the Palm T|X. It's the most advanced PDA Palm ever built, and you can pry mine from my cold, dead hands.

Sadly, not everyone has the disposable income, time, will, desire, or any combination thereof, to go out and buy real hardware just to play with a dead operating system and all the hardships that come with it. Since I still want to spread the word of Palm OS, I've been looking into an alternative - namely, the Palm OS Simulator.

Permalink for comment 590168
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Vote for the Tungsten 3
by Machster on Wed 4th Jun 2014 14:12 UTC
Machster
Member since:
2007-05-15

While I share your love of Palm OS, that love would have stopped when Palm introduced NVRAM. From then on it was never the same: Palm OS was meant to run and be stored entirely in RAM.

NVRAM was introduced to satisfy users who would let the battery drain without a backup. Unfortunately, NVRAM also introduced instability and performance issues. The later devices were noticeably less responsive. Utilities sprang up to try to fix the cache problems but were not entirely successful.

If someone wanted to explore the actual hardware I can recommend the Tungsten 3 which also came with the fastest processor incorporated into a Palm: 400mhz. Unfortunately, the highest capacity SD card that could be used was 1.5gb if one could find it. I use a 1 gb.

Palm was never known for their screen quality but unlike the subsequent models, which suffered from a lack of brightness and were heavily blue tinted, the screen on the T3 (and the TC) was decent, even by today's standards. None of these can come close to the resolution of today's screens, but most could be easily read in the daylight due to their trans-reflective screen technology.

I can also recommend the ill-fated Tapwave Zodiac with a caveat. The Zodiac was meant to be a Palm OS gaming machine with its built in joy stick and shoulder triggers. Unfortunately for Tapwave it came out just before the Sony PSP was announced. It only came with a 200mhz processor (which the makers claimed was fast enough) but it did incorporate a separate gpu for very smooth graphics. Both versions had two SD slots that could take up to 2 gb each. The caveat was/is that the hardware, specifically the resistive-touch screen and the joy stick, suffered accuracy issues. Getting one without these issues might be difficult.

It should be noted that the applications for Palm were small in size so the devices did not need a lot of storage space or RAM to begin with.

Edited 2014-06-04 14:16 UTC

Reply Score: 3