With almost a year and a half under its belt, the once fresh and relevant Palm Pre is clearly beginning to show off its age as weve seen it slowly becoming more of a distant memory than anything else. Happily, HP Palm recently unveiled their followup successor with the Palm Pre 2 which has some notable improvements under the hood with its updated webOS platform.
On the surface, the Palm Pre 2 doesnt differ too much from the originals design and feel – which is honestly the safe approach with any succeeding device. Compact by default, this portrait sliding QWERTY handset boasts some minor elements, like its Gorilla glass display, that make it feel slightly more solid in the hand. Although it might not retain the originals polished stone look, the handset employs more of a flat surface with its touchscreen and is hugged with a bezel – both of which give off a distinct look to the somewhat unchanged handset. Another notable change is that Palm removed the plastic cover for the microUSB port and now keeps it exposed.
The sliding mechanism feels fairly responsive and reveals the all too familiar cramped Pre keyboard. Thankfully though, Palm improved the tactile feel of its buttons, but it still doesnt feel as good as the one found with the Palm Pixi or even Palm Treo Pro. Regardless, existing Palm Pre users wont have too much concern when adjusting to the keyboard on this device.
In the rear, Palm decided to increase the camera from a 3-megapixel shooter to a 5-megapixel one. From what we were shown, it still retains that lightning quick response in taking consecutive photos without much pause in between shots. However, it should be noted that its not an auto-focus camera, but simply, a usual fixed focused one.