Analyzing the teaser: slider phone with autofocus camera and dock connector | webOS Nation
 
 

Analyzing the teaser: slider phone with autofocus camera and dock connector 165

by Derek Kessler Wed, 02 Feb 2011 8:22 pm EST

So, Palm posted a video this evening teasing some extra-close-up shots of a black something that will presumably be unveiled at the Think Beyond event next week. Being the desperate for more info types that we are, we couldn’t help but dig into those eight seconds of ghostly silent video to figure out what it is. And here’s our conclusion: it’s the next generation webOS smartphone, possibly a successor to the Pre.

How did we come to these conclusions? Experience, caffeine, voodoo magics, and a lot of squinting and conjecture. After all, we’re gleaning what we can from three almost macro shots, two of them of the same corner of the device. Here’s what we can say with certainty: this is a smartphone with a glass screen, power switch, ringer toggle, autofocus camera, and some kind of dock connector. More detail after the break.

Why a smartphone and not a tablet? It’s the scale of the curves and the placement of the buttons. It’s all very much like the current Pre-series devices, though seemingly thinner. Heck, even the camera is in the same spot as before, though the speaker there is new and we didn’t spy an LED flash.

As Meltedwire pointed out in the comments on the teaser video post, that is an autofocus camera. It has a separate lens cover (it’s at an angle with the curving back cover in relation to the purple camera lens below) and the round and raised camera module body indicates to us that it’s capable of moving independently from the rest of the phone (as well as looking very similar to camera modules installed in the last few iPhones). That says autofocus camera to us. As we noted above, we didn’t see an LED flash in this video, though it’s entirely conceivable that it was moved over to the other side of that speaker.

Now, about those five rounded silver bits: that’s a dock connector of some type. We don’t know if it’s the Touchstone v2 as markm2179 and other suggested, but our time with the old Jawbone headsets tells us that those five little silver bits are dock connectors. What exactly they’re for is anybody’s guess - for all we know it could be video and audio out to a media dock. Wouldn’t that be something? Also, we can say that these aren’t any sort of connections for the “tap to send” feature leaked a few weeks back, or at least we hope they aren’t. The fact that they’re recessed tells us that this is meant for a persistent physical connection, like charging or sending data to other wired bits.

Lastly, there’s that seam down the middle of the device. It could be one of two things: a battery cover or the seam between two sliding halves. If we operate on the slider assumption, the placement of the buttons, dock, etc leads us to say a vertical slider, making it a successor to the Pre. It also makes us wonder about the removability of the battery, we don’t see an additional seam for the battery cover like we do on the current Pre devices. It’s possible that there may be another method for removing the battery, but on the flips side of the coin, a non-removable battery can be a bigger and more strangely-shaped battery (see the tall-and-skinny iPhone 4 battery) with longer life.

Or that could be the battery back, which slots over the power button, ringer switch, and other controls like it does on the Pixi, though hopefully without being as difficult to remove. We can’t imagine this being a slider with a full-wrap removable back (the edge of the back would wrap around to the front of the keyboard, and that’d be no good), so if this is the battery back seam, we’re going to have to say that this is a small keyboard-less phone. As much as we want a small phone, we’re big keyboard fans here, so we’re hoping it’s the former option.

So, what do we have here? Like we said at the start, we can’t say anything definitively, but if you forced us to tell you what we see, here it is: this is a Pre-style slider phone with a glass screen, autofocus camera, and a dock connector of uncertain function. We'd be remiss if we didn't point out that the corner of this device looks an awful lot like Virox's renders for last year's mock-up contest. Come to think of it, his PalmPad render looks an awful lot like what we've seen thus far. Crazy, eh? All we know for certain is that we can’t wait to find out what it really is, and we get the feeling we’re going to want one.

165 Comments

PLEASE......FOR THE LOVE OF GOD.....LET THIS SEE THE LIGHT OF DAY ON THE SPRINT NETWORK!!! Derek...Dieter....What do you guys feel in your hearts??? Is Sprint gonna see the love????

I PRAY FOR THIS TO BE ON SPRINT AHHHH

I'm not seeing the cool factor here. Unless there's something we don't see, people are not going to get rid of their iphones.

lol well I think it's safe to assume there's quite a bit we can't see unless the phone consists of 2 corners...

I hope it's on Sprint. I can't really say either way, because I have no clue.

It would make sense that they are getting some amazing new phones on Sprint, with their new $10 smartphone bonus charge going into effect. If they don't have some great new hardware, then their bringing their costs closer to what it costs to have a smartphone on AT&T or Verizon seems like a really bad move.

I hope this is the big announcement Sprint has on the 7th!

Wait, nevermind, HP doesn't have their announcement until the 9th....I just shattered my own dream.... :*(

I realize Sprint has the lowest total cost for a smartphone with dataplan, but I'm still paying a lot for my account. That being said, if this is exclusively on another carrier, and it turns out to be a phone at least on par with current-gen smartphones, I'll move to whichever carrier sells it.

Where is the releasemypre guy? SPRINTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I've been month-to-month with Sprint for almost 2 years waiting for something worth renewing the contract for. (755P > Pro > Pre > ???)

> w/e that is up there haha

it is definitely a keyboard phone. "Just type" ring any bells?

oh im excited!

You can type on virtual keyboards too.

;-)

Win. and if you notice the fact that just type actually has a text bar attached to it implies it is being used with touchscreen only phones as you will just tap that bar to bring up the on screen keyboard to just type.

u sir are correct

yippie.

Happy with the slider idea. I love the form factor. However, I find myself pulling the battery a lot. Hope there is a reset button. I did also destroy my old battery (somehow) and the $3 OEM replacement was extremely helpful in getting more than 4 hours out of my phone.

Guess we'll see in 6 days!

Orange+Sym+R = Reset

You should never pull the battery out. You can hold down the power button and you get the option for reset, power off and replace battery.

Worst case, hold down the power button and slide the ringer switch back and forth four or five times.

the pre form factor is AWESOME for use in the car docked with the touchstone. the phone is so easy to navigate that way.

Very good attention to detail (from everyone); it amazes me how astute our community is!

I hope it's a Pre 3/successor...on Sprint I would be more then happy. I do agree though, I think it's a slider Pre-successor.

Loving the tease campaign! This tease alone is already leaps and bounds better than the entire "creepy lady" Palm Pre campaign.

Feb 9th can't get here any quicker!

Hopefully it's the Pre 3 and it's on At&t. I want a 4" screen and updated core apps.

awesome. looking forward to the reveal

I don't think the 5 silvery bits are dock connectors. They look more like some kind of sliding switch. Maybe just for look and gripping.

ha ha i just tweeted the same thing. it looks like its slides in the recess area. maybe those are leds and they light up for some reason?

i hope they arent just cosmetic.

If they were just grips or looks, why would they show it?

I thought the same thing - it looks like there's a track it slides on, which could be anything; volume control, focus, universal slider widget for whatever an app could use it for.

yeaaah some kinda analog slider mechanism would we cool. good thought

To me it looks like a pop-off USB cover with some cosmetic styling.

some kind of cover/door yes

Agreed, I did not think dock connector at all when I saw it. The recessed part below implies it slides left and right...

Also, the company that's in close-to-last place in a market shouldn't be using weird proprietary connectors. I'd be pretty pissed if it was.

Maybe it's a toggle switch for sharing content with the new PalmPad? Just my idea. Maybe the white dots turn to orange when you slide it to let you know you've turned on sharing content with another device? Just my idea..

It looks like some kind of magnetic plug. Possibly for docking it to other accessories. It makes sense to get rid of the USB all together since the only reason you would need a USB is to program the phone. Charging and transferring stuff can be done wireless.

The space on both the right and left side of it are more than the width of the black component which means it's not slider. Plus they don't have the same design for the silencer next to the power button.

After review.. it is TOTALLY a 5-Pin connector and not a switch. There is space on each side of the pin set for the holder. The ringer switch is shown in another part of the same video

Ringer switch is at the top and sticks out, see pic #3. The presumed dock connector is recessed, which is bad for a switch of any type.

If not a dock connector, then I would assume it's some sort of sliding volume control, which could account for the recessed tab, meaning it would theoretically not slide around when coming in and out of a pocket. The fact that it would slide around excessively makes me lean to the idea of it being some sort of connector. A sliding ringer/volume switch would be impractical.

I'm thinking this could be a SLIDING Touchstone dock connector.. Think about it:

Position 1 (left): Just charge
Position 2 (center): Media mode
Position 3 (right): Some other mode

I agree. The hardware does look like it slides note the quite visible space between the edges of the phone and the connector/button. The space has to be there for a reason otherwise I believe Palm would have favored a more solid design. The track also does seem fairly large. The coloration of the "dots" appear to be a cosmetic feature, but it could aslo be blacklit for led notifications ect. Maybe it is actually a slider button and it's use is for switching "cards" in landscape mode?

I could go back to a dock connector. Have you ever tried to plug that frickin little USB connector in while driving???

You should get a touchstone for your car. Verizon was blowing them out for $10 a pop a few months back. I've got my touchstone sitting on my dash, on one of those "sticky pads" that you can buy to hold onto your cell phone or sunglasses, plugged into a car charger.

Works exceptionally well... I've never had it slip off of the touchstone while driving, even during hard braking and maneuvering. I can see and hear any messages or calls come in, and easily pull it on and off the charger when I have to wait at a stoplight.

Dude it doenst do any of those things. it shots lasers out that go to the music that your phone is playing. have u ever been to a show where they have the laser fans? thats def it right there. i hope they are green lasers

yeah, I definitely dont see dock connector there

looks like you slide the 5 silvery things to reveal a connector...maybe to sync to a tablet or a laptop.

yeah, this was my thinking. it may slide to the side to reveal the micro-USB charging hookup

Y'know, regardless of what that is, the sliding USB port cover is a brilliant/elegant solution to hiding the port. Guess it might waste a bit of internal space, but it'd be prettier and more robust than what's out there already!

I want this to come to Canada, I don't like Android at all...

how? its very functional and user friendly. i know what u mean, but if u didnt have it to compare to anything else u would think it was incredible

Thanks Derek, that was very cool! :D

The five round things is a slider, not a connector, those are just decorative for grip when you slide it

A grip surface, perhaps? Just to give a little tactile feedback for where the slider is?

A dock connector would be awesome, just sayin' I can't quite see it..

its def not a dock connector. PERIOD. its going to have a touchstone and usb. why in the hell would that b another connector?... alil off topic but for the love of god palm/hp advertise the touchstone cuz every phone nut i know that sees that thing they are like "yooooo i wish my phone had that." my android crazy buddy was talking about trying to mod his htc incredible to use that thing. ITS THE BEST THING ABOUT THE PHONE. advertise it. fuckin a

I'll take 2 on Sprint to-go please with a side of webOS 2.1 and a pair of V2 Touchstones.

I wouldn't be so sure about the dock as well. There are seams around seams around it indicating a slider. That was my first thing as well: the ringer toggle.

However, the toggle would be rather large...

Which picture depicts a glass screen? I think that just falls in the common sense/wishful thinking catagory.

Pic #3. The darker portion at the bottom left.

Could the 5 dots be a new proprietary charging connector a la Macbooks with a magnetic attachment? That way it avoids the whole microUSB interface and door cover issues from the original Pre.

Exactly.

Not to mention pocket lint getting in the mUSB plug.

I don't think Palm will be moving away from the standard charging port (microUSB).

There's been talk about external connectivity with monitors, TV's, etc, though I can only recall it in the context of the steroid-enhanced Touchstone. USB doesn't have the bandwidth - so I could see where they'd have some sort of connector to carry all those bits..

Yeah, it was regarding the Touchstone v2.

And a 5-pin connector for the Touchstone would make sense if it is a media connection port..

But they're not going to remove the standard microUSB charging port.

I agree. On the other hand, if you're trying to push out a 15 second viral marketing vid, would you show a picture of a "standard microUSB charging port"?

That's like advertising that the phone has a screen.. =)

Now you know what I want to see? The battery connector.

The damn Pre Plus battery connector is positioned so everytime I close my slider it reboots the damn phone! Putting a foam pad on the battery is ridiculous and barely works. See any Nokia phone for better ideas, that I hope this next-gen Palm will feature instead!

There's no reason to release Pre 2 (which was debatable as a true successor anyway) with this slider phone coming soon. I'd much rather leapfrog over the Pre 2 with this new device rather than underwhelm Verizon users with a few months of the Pre2. Anyone know if Pre 2 is selling in europe or canada?

i guess for most of us the most important thing we need to see is the carrier branding.

i would guess most here will get one if its on the right carrier.

i want it to be on either Verizon or sprint.

How about Sprint and AT&T?

Im on a Sprint Pre and I think it should be on every network.

please let it be 4G

the thought of it not being 4G never even crossed my mind it would be epic fail if it werent

I can't see what the thrill of 4G is.. It's not really 4G, it costs more, is only available in a few markets, and really doesn't provide a markedly more impressive experience.

4G is a slogan - anyone remember V.FAST?

4G doesn't cost more on Sprint anymore. You pay $10 more if you have it or not.

Maybe the five sliver dots is a lock for the silder to eliminate any oreo wobbles!

i'm gonna say in pic 3 we are seeing the power button and volume rocker... and that the alleged "dock connection" is indeed the ringer switch.. just a fancier rigid...

edit: i retract the above comment.. after watching the video a few more times.. that on top is clearly the ringer switch.. so i'll assume thats a power button on the side.. and the other is still a mystery.. i am now going to agree with treetom (below) in saying "thats where the magic comes out" lol

Great googly moogly... That's where the magic comes out... Not a dock connector at all...

Ok, after sliding back and forth through the video, this is what I think can be made out.

1) The device clearly has a larger camera lens than the current Pre, and is likely an autofocus camera as suggested.

2) The ringer and power buttons are metal, or metallic painted (that would be really cheap, though, so I'm thinking metal).

3) That "dock connector" appears to actually be a sliding switch or cover. Considering where it is located, I suspect it is a sliding door for the USB port.

4) This appears to be a slider, and it looks like a curved one, meaning this very much looks like a Pre successor.

It also appears too me that this phone is slightly larger. Probably a 3.5" to 3.8" display sized device, but they did a good job minimizing how much of the phone you see. Too me the biggest indicator is the size of the side slide cover/switch (or "dock connector) in relation to the phone.

That's my take, at least.

HP has in the past had soft sliders for their volume control. That is what I believe it is unless someone can explain the groves it sits in. I could go for a locking slider, but I still think the volume is the best choice.

Really not liking the plasticky look to it again. I was hoping for a much more matted metallic look to it. But from the images it looks to have a rugged, bumpy back for grip or asthetics. I'll wait and see i suppose.

Oh my an improved pre form factor, iphone 4 specs? ;) yes please!

I'm thinking the white ring around the camera lens IS the flash. If so it's very cool and great for macro shots.

Chrome ring, like on practically every smartphone made in the last three years.

Yep, I see that now. Drats.

Btw, thats a slider phone if i evet saw one. The pic with the connector/ringer switch gives it away.

Can i just point out, it will be epic FAIL if the phone still has a screen smaller than 3.7 inches.

Well, HP's been talking about multiple form-factors for a while now.

Count me in the camp that doesn't want to carry a paperback-sized form-factor phone around in his pocket..

Those massive Android bricks (but they're thin! With "4G"!) might be useful if you're wearing a suit, or carry a man-bag around. I wear jeans and a flannel shirt to work, and the current Pre's screen size is the perfect balance between "phone" and "smart".

Of course, as I've said elsewhere here, there will be many form factors, if HP can execute on their plan. Even paperbacks. =)

I really hope it has a micro sd card, and doesn't make you store everything in their "cloud."

Can't wait until the 9th. That's my birthday week. This announcement could end up being a great bday present.

something tells me this is Verizon's pre 2. i may be completely wrong, but info over the last few weeks points toward a quick release of product/s after announcement, and verizon has yet to launch the pre 2. if i remember correctly, there was a rumor that verizon had returned their dummy units back to palm, why? Could it be that palm will revise the pre 2 before it launches on a US carrier? since the pre 2 wasnt exactly a "hit" when announced, it makes sense to me.

I would give up the flash for a low light CCD that didn't need a flash. The flash on the pre is almost worse than none at all.

I use my flash as a flashlight every day, primarily while I'm walking home along dark roads. I sure hope they don't drop it.

By the way, the further the flash is from the lens, the less likely you'll get red-eye. I'm not sure if it's possible to move it far enough away on a cell phone to make a difference though. Also, you want the flash higher than the lens or off to the side if that's not possible. Otherwise you get weird and disconcerting shadows.

I don't care what anybody says I'm just going to keep telling myself that this is a landscape qwerty with a tilting screen for sprint, and that the led flash is on the other-side of the camera, or not included in this early render... that is all

My 2 cents on the "dock connector"

I was with the others thinking that this was not a dock connector, also the position of it struck me as where the current microusb port is.

With that in mind I thought, "wait... Could this be some kind of new method for connecting the usb? Avoiding the door altogether?" I knew I hated how the door would rip off the Pre.

Then I looked at my Macbook power connector...

My theory, its a new magnetized power connector that is similar to those used on the macbook. And that would be AWESOME!!!

I'am thinking one of those buttons are a camera button...

It seems to me that the pic with the 5 oblong circles are for grip on a slider. The slider looks to b flush with the body of the device, also the slider looks to b placed in a channel that has room for sliding action from one side to the other. Also, I have no idea how derek can feel like these 3 pics r enough to say that they resemble virox's renders from the contest. Thats amazing to b able to discern that kind of info from almost no info at all because thats what these pics offer. They very little info for us Palm loyalist. However, if he is right I hope that HPalm tweaks the design a little bit because the 3.5" screen is not enough. It needs to be at least 3.7" or 3.8' like the evo shift. That phone, by todays phone size standards is considered to b a smaller phone style. Palm already has small phones, they need their new designs to have as much screen landscape size as the leading phones of today.

What would be real cool to know is if the video and pics, especially the pics were taken with that device. That would say a lot about the camera and its macro capabilities.

That wouldn't be a removable battery hatch, because it surrounds the buttons, it'd be impossible to remove. Looks like they opted for a built in touchstone battery.

my source is credible from what we all have seen... remember my webos 2.0 forum post that i had to take down? The Pre2 will be in there on february 9.. but that is not the only phone.. expect 3 more phones :) and a tablet, duh :D (EXPECT A SUPER PHONE)

The 5 Silver Bits is the Cover for the HDMI out!

If wishes were horses...

Whatever it is, I sincerely hope the charging port is on the top or bottom. I think it was a really poor design for right handed people who have it plugged in while driving. It just gets in the way for one handed usage.

Just like the phone gets in the way of driving?

Slider= Fail

Is there a photo of the sliders Oreo? ;)

Exactly why I want a slab. That and slabs look higher class. Sliders look like something you got on a promotion with a two year contract for 29.99

Im locked in with sprints retarded change up on their premier member elegibility. I took the bait on the evo for $99 christmas eve. I either break contract to go to another carrier (not happening) or cough up around $400 for the new phone should it come out for Sprint.

Call me crazy, but i dont see the thrill in forking over hard earned cash for less features (ie. no google nav, pathetic google maps, no streaming video apps, no bit torrent straight to phone)

It needs to come off the starting line at 500mph with a whole bunch of goodies baked in from HP for it to pull me back in. Im not put off totally. But Webos is not enough to entice.

Enjoy your Evo.

I dont care what it looks like s long as it is a slider with a 3.7" screen. A Slider is definitely the way to go for me.

I lean toward it being a dock connector. Download the clip and slow the video down to a frame by frame.

for that, why not do a screenshot? -_-

Well, the stills posted above make the 5-pin thing look like a connector, but if you watch the vid a hundred+ times as I have, you can see that there's a track there..

I'm reiterating...please come to Sprint!!

Those five silver bits look like the design of the silent switch and not a dock connector to me.

At first when I saw the teaser video I was very optimistic about this phone. But after reading all of the comments and looking at the pictures more closely I think that this is the reworked US release of the Pre 2. If this is the case I think it may be an epic fail unless there are other phones being released as well. In comparing the first photo to my current Pre minus I don't think that it is an autofocus camera, it looks almost the exact same as my current camera except the lens cover is on the battery cover and not on the body of the phone. In the second picture the one with the supposed dock/slider it is pretty simple to see that it is a USB cover that is easier to access that the current flush cover on the current Pre. Also, in the same image it is easy to see the seem for the battery cover. And lastly on the last photo I think it could be just a power button that sticks out the top and possibly and akwardly placed volume rocker with no ringer switch.

I have a Pre+, as well as a Pixi+, and looking at the close-up shot of that camera, it is clearly NOT the same. It is a significantly bigger lens than the Pre, which is bigger than the Pixi. The surrounding parts, are also different.

A dock connector? Really?? I think we're all reaching a little too far here, it's obviously a silent/ringer switch.. Just look at your pre, It's the same basic design, only a little wider with more recesses for better grip(so you can flip off the ringer one handed).

That chrome ring is not a flash... It's the same chrome ring that's on the pre. It better be hiding somewhere on there, cause I do not want a phone without a flash at this point.

The third one I'm having trouble with.. Most likely it's the volume and something else.. Maybe the power.. May not even be the same device (looks similar to the pixi's power button) as you can see the power button on the camera shot and it's obviously not the same.

It's nice to get a tease.. But this is not beyond, this is stuff long since passed.

I bet it is 4 different devices.
Either way, it would be great to be back in the webos camp again! Gotta come with something strong!

God I hope this doesn't have 3.1"screen with low resolution.

They're saving power by going 8-bit on the display.

The more I look at it the more i think it is a pad, i dont see any flash for camera. They just showing the edges and it is hard to say for sure if it is a phone. I say it is a pad.

Hi all,

All I can say is cool, way cool!

Take care,

Jay

Hi all,

All I can say is cool, way cool!

Take care,

Jay

Glad I'm not the only one who thought that looked like the return of the Palm ringer switch. Some other article had me thinking they'd get away from that, but it's awful handy and I'm glad to see it stay!

looks like a pre. looks ugly

as much as i'd love a 4" Pre successor, i think that seam is a bit too narrow to suggest this is a slider phone. this could be a render, however, so it's still possible.

i know this is the internet and everything, but i wouldn't break out "epic fail" until after feb 9. i don't think that is going to happen. i just hope that with HP, Palm was able to choose the strongest components for the new devices.

the Pre 2 is kinda like the Treo Pro. something Palm had on the roadmap and launched seemingly out of obligation. the phone in these photos is not a Pre 2, though. I think the buttons and camera are smaller in relation to the curves.

I knew this was a pad and not a phone, thank g-d it is a pad, i think the pad and phone will look the same in design.

I would love this to be a Pre 3 for Sprint. I am so ridiculously excited for this announcement. Seriously.

Everyone (but one) assumes these are all pictures of the same phone - interesting. I do like the discussion they are generating though.

This could be too late and I don't know if this has been thought or mentioned in the past but I would like to share my thought. Is it possible that the Think Beyond part is a universal 3G/HSPA+ superphone that would work anywhere in the world including AT&T, T-Mobile, Sprint and Verizon by just simply replacing a sim card type chip that supports all type of 3G/HSPA+ radio?

I'm thinking like an oversized sim card radio chip and for GSM versions that chip would obviously have a slot for a regular sim card? I'm not really sure how radio chips are designed but I'm sure thinking beyond can make this possible.

Nice teaser though...

Looks like a smaller pre2 with different speaker placement and a dock connector...yay? no.

My take: It's almost certainly a phone. You can tell in the first shot where you can just see the top left edge bending back down. If it is a tablet, then it is a very small one (e.g. 5" screen).

It does not appear to be a slider - I have owned several slider phones, and none of them have a seam anywhere near that tight. Of course, if this is just a render, then that could explain the tight seam.

Finally, the dock connector/slider thingamagiggee is definitely a functional slider - not a sliding cover. That seems pretty obvious IMO. Many of HP's current devices use a similar slider to power the device on and off.

It's not a dock connector, it's a toasting progress indicator.

http://bit.ly/hGMfZd vs http://bit.ly/guNO2h - coincidence? I think not.

New webOS Toaster, bring it on.

-- Rod

Finally, some good detective work instead of mere speculation! Bravo!

if hp will release a new phone, what will happen to pre 2? a new phone will kill pre 2. I don't think they will do that.

One way to keep Pre 2 going is lower the price. Get some low end new users on Pre 2 allow them to experience webOS, and not have to spend a lot of money right away. Meanwhile, make the cool people pay more for the coolest new devices.

I have been waiting, off-contract, with Sprint since June of last year... just hoping and praying for a new WebOS phone. After using WebOS for so long, I don't think I could stomach going to Android or iOS at this point.

I have been with Sprint since they launched back in 1997... but if they aren't selling whatever new WebOS superphone that HP is coming out with, it would be enough to get me to leave Sprint for a different carrier.

HPalm must be loving our reaction to their tease. Where is the creepy Borg queen chick?

j/k

No slider!

I can see only one groove. I hope you can replace the battery and the SIM has to be inserted like before. So the groove is for the rear panel?

There isn't another groove for the slider mechanism. My Pré features two grooves.

Would be a very sophisticated design, if the groove of the back panel is the same as for the sliding mechanism.

I am quite sure that you are wrong with the dock connectors. If you look at this detail you can see that right of this "thing" there is space as if it was a slider button that can be slided to the right.

So I assume this is nothing else but the ringer (mute) button.

I still wonder why the hell Palm does not release the update for our pre-

This would be a great thing for all fans before the 9th february.

Could still be a slider. They have gone to a standard TS back, so no need to replace the entire back. So the battery door has been reduced to a portion of the back, not the whole back as on the Pre.

It really doesn't look like a dock-connector. I my opinion it is a slidebutton for the volume. So this slidebutton is placed instead of the volumebuttons we know.

I'll tell you what the 5 silver dots are, that's the connector for the slide-out and detachable keyboard. Also the designs and specs for the Tablet and phone have been hiding in plain view but we overlooked them. This Virox character from the Mock-up contest shows the way, i have he/she is an employee of Hp/Palm with some minor tweaks those could be the watch, phone, and tablet.

I was thinking something similar. His entry was executed so well. It really made me think. And then reading the specs for the concepts... they are soooo spot on!!

If I were an ElectroMechanical engineer, (I am) & worked for HP on this project.... (I don't) I would look at the following:
1. Space is always an issue
2. Interfacing needs fwd & backward compatibility
so what if they designed a slider connector..
Bottom position is power + USB.
slide the switch up & reconnect & whalah... you have Audio/Video & or?
so under the sliding connections are multiple connectios. Not to difficult as these are low power/low amp. Connections.. Especially if powered from Touchstone2 or PC or XBox or..? (insert your Fantasy here)...

HP/Palm have waited so long that the bar is unbelievably high now. And with Apotheker publicly declaring war with Apple and taking aim directly at the iPhone and iPad, they're claiming they can and will bring out devices that blow away the competition. Unless they really can, they're pretty much declaring their own death.

I am NOT interested in another small-screen Pre-like phone. I NEED a new webOS phone with a modern 4"+ smartphone screen. Also, I have NO interest in a landscape slider. I wouldn't mind another physical keyboard as long as it's a portrait slider, but IMHO Swype makes a physical keyboard unnecessary. That being said, I have NO interest in a virtual keyboard if it doesn't have Swype. My wife has an Epic 4G and I almost never use the physical keyboard and it's ONLY because Swype is awesome!

I feel certain that the 5-dot thing is a dock connector. They'll still have microUSB for charging and data transfer but they'll also have standard Touchstone inductive charging and I believe this dock connector will allow them to transfer data and video to and from the device in all the ways the Atrix 4G does. I want to drop my new webOS device into a cradle that provides HDMI connectivity without the risk of breaking connectors. Please let the new webOS device do "Think Ahead" and "Think Beyond" in ways that at least matches the capabilities of the Atrix 4G and all it's associated peripherals.

BTW, what's up with the Pre2? Why release it at all at this point? The specs on the Pre2 are so last-year unless it's aimed at the inexpensive "teen phone" market. It seems crazy to me that they have the Pre2 but it's only available in an unlocked developer-only model and not yet available on any US carriers. I seriously don't see why anyone would care about that phone at this point.

I hope that any new webOS devices continue to at least have an option for a camera flash/LED Torch. And what I'd LOVE is if it works as well as a regular digital camera so the images with a flash-fire don't look all washed out and ghostly and unnatural. I'm hoping that the teaser images are just not showing that the flash is on the other side of the speaker grill.

BTW, I'm hoping that the speaker grill indicates that the built-in stereo speakers are LOUD and offer great sound quality for music and speakerphone.

I don't think people "get" why a front-facing camera matters yet. It's new and seems like a novelty to people but it will become a standard smartphone feature. Of course most of your calls will continue to be voice-only but people will want universal capability to video chat with built-in webcams on phones. And I'm predicting that Google Voice will dominate as the standard way to do that. It could have been Qik or Skype but I doubt it. Apple is off on an island by themselves locking users into FaceTime on WiFi only and only with other iPhone4+ users.

So yeah, any new webOS device NEEDS a front-facing webcam too.

Another random thought about webOS is that I want the ability to swipe DOWN to minimize card stacks to the notification area so I can keep apps running but they're out of the way. Also, I like the idea of pinch and stretch to navigate among my open card stacks. You know how tapping in the empty space makes card extra small so you can see more of them at once? It seems only natural to extend that idea with webOS 2.1 or whatever and use pinch and stretch to navigate among them.

I'm so glad your not engineering Smartphones.. pre2 was for dev's, not aimed at the market, that's why there is no ad's for it. pre2 was in the pipeline before hp bought palm, devices already orderd. the penalty to cancel orders would have cost hp more than actually let the devices produce. hp are a greedy punks, you really think that they do anything out of good will..

and hey, it's not gonna be a 4" screen, believe me..

This is Dark Vader phone!!!!!

I also think the photos show more than one device.

The photo that shows the screen does worry me though. The top surface does not look flat with the screen somehow raised against the edges of the phone. There is a shadow between the the screen and the edge of the phone, especially visible on top. I am not sure that is a nice form factor, but let's see!

Yeah, I am interested in a flat gorilla glass screen. I think they had the right idea with Pre2 and I am very fond of the screen on my wife's Epic 4G.