PalmOne released today a sequel for its popular Tungsten E. The Tungsten E2, looks essentially identical to its predecessor, but offers Bluetooth wireless networking, and a more powerful battery. Like the original, the E2 has a 320-by-320-pixel display. This is 30% brighter and has 40% better color saturation. This handheld has 32 MB of NVFS memory, with 26 MB available to the user. NVFS memory holds information without a charge or power. It runs at 200 Mhz, it has a headphones-in jack, but it lacks a microphone. It uses PalmOS Garnet 5.4.7 and sells for $249. Reviews here, here and here.
Palm Releases the Tungsten E2
2005-04-13 Wireless 22 Comments
Well if it’s just a tad better than the original E that I have it’s worth buying if you’re on the lookout for a PDA.
where is my Palm OS 6?
And a sripting interface for the desktop data files?
…but i’ll stick with my wifi+bt+sd+cf 400mhz pocketpc.
Palm just ain’t what it used to be…
…but i’ll stick with my wifi+bt+sd+cf 400mhz pocketpc.
and 4 hour battery life too, right?
I’m pissed at Palm for two reasons: first, they bought out Be and won’t release jack about the OS; and second, they’re not even utilizing the new OS that the Be engineers worked so hard on.
I’m buying a PocketPC next.
I had a Z71, and I loved it, but I need wifi daily and I waited patiently for the T|T5 to come out, just to reveal itself as the crappiest thing palm put out *ever*.
I’ll admit my battery life is nothing compared to that of my z71, but i wouldn’t trade my ppc (and the 2gb CF card I’ve just bought) for ANY palm in a near future. My step up would be a zaurus with wifi.
yeah. im planning on eventually getting a new zaurus. very nice pda’s!
lets see.. what are ‘other’ reasons for buying a company? OH! thats right! Patents! or developers! wow! whoduhthunkit!?
I’m pissed at Palm for not making it clear that the original Tungsten E couldn’t be upgraded to wireless, despite its having an SD slot that can physically accept a Palm-branded wi-fi card.
Does anyone know whether the E2 drivers for wi-fi will work on the E? If so, or if Palm had an E-to-E2 upgrade program for stranded customers like me, I just might think of them semi-favorably once again.
wait for OS 6…
Rastalabasta: You’re confusing PalmOne and PalmSource.
zaurus r00lz da house amico!
Keep in mind the average PDA sold in 2004 (in USA) was around $340. So I predict the E2 will do very well in attracting existing Palm owners using 3+ year-old devices.
I’d run out TODAY and buy these hypothetical devices and not the E2:
EV Palm Vx form-factor, $349 (yes, $100 extra for same features as E2 in a thin shirt-pocket device)
E2+ 64MB RAM, $249. (IMHO, Palm would sell a 500,000 more units than E2 if the did this).
E2++ 128MB RAM + voice recorder, $349.
Now the summary with bad news first (because it is fewer/shorter than the good news):
BAD1: The E2 is now 0.59 inch thick. Palm needs a THINNER device that doesn’t look geeky (stylish like RAZR). RAZR proved that style matters more than features for millions of customers willing to pay big bucks.
BAD2: Palm users know 32MB RAM in Palm is not the same as 32MB RAM in PocketPC–but non-Palm users don’t know that. If you want NEW customers, offer 64MB RAM. But if your business strategy is to continue reselling to existing Palm customers, then this is not as damaging (yet)–and you’ll continue losing marketshare. Kinda like the strategy of only advertising on Palm-related websites instead of advertising on PocketPC and smartphone-related websites (maybe the same marketing folks from Commodore Amiga got hired to do this?).
BAD3: No voice recorder. Most of us HATE tapping notes into PDA devices but we love accessing data already inside it. Give us a quick one-handed method to record voice notes.
Now, on to the good news (improvements from E -> E2 cut/paste from palmone.com website):
“Brighter, richer color display.
The new color display – typically 30% brighter than the Tungsten E display – makes it easy to view any document, indoors or out. And with 40% better color saturation, photos and video clips come to life in rich, dazzling color.
Non-volatile, flash memory.
Now all of your information stays protected – even if you’re on the go and don’t have time to recharge.
Bluetooth® wireless technology.
Synchronize with your desktop without wires getting in the way1. Or use your Tungsten E2 handheld with a compatible phone to send email and text messages2. You can even check news headlines on the Web2.
Better battery life.
The new battery has more longevity, so you don’t have slow down when life speeds up. For example, you’ll get 10-12 hours of continuous use if you want to listen to your MP3s all day3.
NEW Documents To Go® 7.0.
View native PowerPoint files (for Mac users, too). Take your important Word and Excel docs with you. And get an intuitive interface that’s even easier to use.
Wi-Fi card compatible.
Turn your Tungsten E2 into a Wi-Fi® enabled device. Get the Wi-Fi Card by palmOne (sold separately) and download the free driver for Tungsten E2 handhelds from palmOne.com/support. Then simply plug the card into the expansion slot to surf the web or check your email at cafes, airports, or at thousands of Wi-Fi hotspots around the world4.
VersaMail® 2.7.1 email client.
Use Versamail to help stay on top of your email5 – both IMAP and Internet POP accounts. You can download your email to read and compose responses offline. Then, when you’re back at your desk, sync with your computer5 and send those responses. Or, use a Bluetooth mobile phone to establish a wireless Internet connection and check your email while mobile, but use the larger handheld screen to read the email and write responses6.
Photos and videos to go.
Thanks to the new palmOne Media application, you can take digital photos and videos with you, and show them off on the bright color screen. Or pop in the SD memory card from your digital camera, and view them that way. You can even add a photo as wallpaper in the background of your home screen.
The faster, more powerful IntelÆ 200MHz XScale ARM-based processor lets you work and play without missing a beat.
New multi-connector port is compatible with all of the latest power and synchronization cables, such as the cradle kit, travel chargers and car charger.
I had a PalmIII and PalmVx (which I sold last year), and I absolutely love the PalmOS. But today my needs are more.
I can’t think of a single good reason to buy a Palm PDA anymore.
As soon as the Ipaq rz1710 becomes availible with the latest WindowsCE (or whatever it is called), I’m buyin that instead.
As long as Palm ignores a proper file system and doesn’t release Cobalt with proper multi-tasking, I’m not ever going to look back.
1. No microphone.
2. The price was upgraded at $249 while they removed the cradle that was standard on the Tungsten E model that was selling for $199.
3. 32 MB of RAM is too few when most PalmOS apps can’t be run natively from an SD card. 64 MBs would be better to install most stuff.
Obviously, that model could easily be still selling at $199 and still make profit. I am pretty unhappy about these three points, and especially about the #1 and #2.
“2. The price was upgraded at $249 while they removed the cradle that was standard on the Tungsten E model that was selling for $199.”
I’ve never seen a Tungsten E that came with a cradle. They used a usb cable instead.
I bought my Tungsten E when they first came out in October 2003, and I love it. At first I was disappointed that the battery life I got was 3 hours tops. But I found a screen dimmer utility and was able to extend the battery life to about 5 hours by running the unit as dim as it could go. This setting is still bright enough for me. (For some reason, the built-in PalmOS brightness slider doesn’t go as low as the unit is capable of.) Furthermore, adding an external battery pack was cheap, cheap, cheap (like $5 cheap, homemade) because the unit uses a standard 5V connector and a standard mini-USB connector.
So yes, the Tungsten E has some warts, but I was able to work around them. Palm OS is well designed (for usability, that is) and there is a very large shareware / freeware catalog of software for it. I highly recommend the Tungsten E, so hopefully this next generation E2 will deliver great things, too.
Darren Paul Griffith
“I’m pissed at Palm for two reasons: first, they bought out Be and won’t release jack about the OS; and second, they’re not even utilizing the new OS that the Be engineers worked so hard on.
I’m buying a PocketPC next.”
So you are going to give money to the company that forced Be into the position of having to sell to Palm. Brillant strategy!
Not that the new Tunston E2 doesn’t sound nice, but I have a tapwave zodiac and I think its a better deal. About the same price w/more or less the same features, and it has a 3d accelerator. I’m really happy with it.
This is the perfect PDA for me. I actually did a wish list because the original Tungsten E was not enough.
If money doesn’t count I would go for the Treo 650 or the T5, but it really does. So, I don’t need a new cell phone, because most of the time my Nokia is sitting at home (I don’t like being so easy to locate). My very old Handspring Visor Deluxe had a Mic but I never used, not a single time.
Tungsten E2 has what I love about the T5: non-volatile memory, Bluetooth networking, fast enough processor, newer OS and a brighter screen. Don’t use a bomb to kill a mosquito… And no, I don’t need a cradle because there is Bluetooth hot-sync. The E2 just fits me. I’m going go get one.
Still, a microphone should have been there though. The Tungstens are business devices and it’s more convinient to speak than to write. And adding a mic doesn’t cost more than $1 or $2. It was perfectly feasible to add it to the E2.
Not always, but in specific cases, the E2 is substantially faster than the T5 despite having a much slower CPU.
Don’t waste money on the T5. The E2 is a better deal (you can find them today for around $219 and then probably $199 by Christmas).
If you don’t mind not having the NVRAM found in E2, then the Zire 72s (silver) is a great deal at $299 with free 512MB SD card on the PalmOne website. Unlike the E2, the Zire 72s has a voice recorder and camera.