Palm 'Mansion' coming: 800x480, no physical keyboard | webOS Nation
 
 

Palm 'Mansion' coming: 800x480, no physical keyboard 371

by Dieter Bohn Mon, 04 Oct 2010 3:16 pm EDT

  Palm Mansion

Device rumors surrounding Palm smartphones are starting to heat up. After we saw the P102 appear in a certification database (and subsequently get pulled) and heard that we might see something in October, another very reliable tipster has written in that Palm is planning a new device - which may or may not be the same thing as the P102.

The phone is codenamed 'mansion.' It is to have a 800x480 screen and it will not have a physical keyboard - a design decision that's very interesting given that we assumed that virtual keyboard code buried in webOS 2.0 was meant for the PalmPad.

We know that webOS scales easily so we're not concerned about a smartphone with a virtual keyboard from that standpoint - but we'll be curious to see if Palm can rise above the mix of 'pretty good' virtual keyboards on Android phones and get theirs up to par with the iPhone and Windows Phone.

Does a slate-style webOS device without a physical keyboard interest you? How about an 800x480 screen?

Thanks Anonymous!

(Update: As ToniCipriani cleverly notes in the comments, the Palm Pre was codenamed 'Castle,' which is mansion-esque, eh?)

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371 Comments

yes

I guess I'm one of the few looking forward to a webOS phone that does not have a painful-to-use physical keyboard.

HPalm will produce multiple form factors, that is probably why there has been such a wait.. IF they are smart the will have one in every form, slab, Portrait sliders, landscape slider, candybar.

Don't fail us HPalm..

i too think multiple formfactors is a smarter thing to do. i'm not big on portrait sliders or candy bars but i don't see how you can not have a slab in the market today.

'candybars'.....

the snauzberries taste like snauzberries

+1

Oh please, please release your next phone on Sprint with 4G and before the year is over. I beg of you Palm and HP. This is the only thing that will keep me from upgrading to the EVO or Epic. I love WebOS but WiMax is about 7 times faster than 3g where I live and that's enough to get a WiMax phone. Plus Android is a pretty good OS with all the Google apps behind it. I guess we'll see what happens in the next few weeks. (fingers crossed)

I had just decided that I was leaving Sprint after 12 years for AT&T since my contract is up and I can't find a Sprint phone that I want. HOWEVER maybe if HPalm magically releases an amazing phone before Xmas, they my keep me as a webos user AND as a Sprint customer....only time will tell

So you're going to get an iPhone? AT&T carries squat in terms of Android phones.

Unless you were thinking the new Blackberry I find it hard to believe that you can't find another phone on Sprint. You don't think that the Epic or EVO qualify as amazing?

The iPhone is actually quite impressive. If it was available on Sprint than this old crust Pre would ot hold me back. A new slab webOS phone.... Interesting.....

Sorry for the confusion. I was thinking about leaving Sprint and going to AT&T for the iphone. However I may just hold off until Xmas and see if anything comes to fruition from HPalm now that we are getting some leaks. I am not an Android or Black Berry fan. I do love webOS and would also be fine with an iphone.

If it is 4g I probably won't get it. Sprint would charge me the extra $10 a month even though there is no 4G coverage where I am.

4G is great, but on a WebOS device it would need an easier to tether capability. Right now, I'd have to have the MHS that isn't supposed to be on Sprint, or tweak with driver installation and network settings to tether.

Android devices are ridiculously easy to tether with PDAnet. My friend bought his Evo and he simply downloaded PDAnet from the Android Market. He was up and running at 5Mbps in less than 2 minutes.

Can't say that with WebOS. Too many hoops to jump through if you are on Sprint.

Your friend might have purchased PDAnet, but that doesn't make it sanctioned. Sprint can still terminate your friend's contract because he is violating the no-tether-unless-you-pay-for-it portion of it.

And yet it still has it. Who cares if it violates a lame policy? Sprint obviously doesn't care as long as you don't consistently go over the 5 gig cap.

I just hope WebOS 2.0 doesn't break MHS on Sprint for now.

+1

Likely so. Pushing at "enterprise" and targeting Blackberry, I know they'll definitely be offering a physical keyboard soon enough. For me, I wont jump at a slab, might tinker with one and wait a few weeks to see what else is in the pipe. Likewise, I wont settle for such a cramped keyboard as we've been getting either. But interesting if they lead with a slab, backing further away from the Palm roots.

i too want my next phone to be keyboardless. i was the opposite til my pre keyboard started messing up actually. now it's not as big a deal.

I say give us who don't want the physical kb the phone we have wanted, and all these yahoots who claim to still love their Pre's as is can wait 6 more months for a hardware kb version.

Makes total sense. I don't just "claim" to still love my pre, and have absolutely no use for a keyboardless slab - not now (under contract), not later (keyboard wh0re). Unless I ever see a VKB that I really like... And the iPhone isn't even CLOSE. I want reliable. Keys are.

So yes - bring the slab NOW for all the people who don't like keyboards because that's a gap in Palm's portfolio right now. And bring a true Pre replacement when the Pre is two years old.

No your not the only one. I am over the crapped keyboard on my Pre and I don't want to feel like I have a Black Berry. However if they are going to do a virtual keyboard it better be one hell of a virtual keyboard.

I need a physical keyboard. It's superior in almost every way. I'm a power user though. I'm typing on this thing constantly. I'm at the point where I can type without looking at my phone.

Exactly.

I don't see what you are talking about the keyboard was near perfect for texting right left handed while I changed gears with my right. But, I don't mind seeing a non keyboard device and how well Palm applies it.

Everything is true!
Go in look look: http://www.bizboysell.com
Believe that you may need.

I don't find the physical keyboard on my Pre "painful to use".

Even HTC (Now) and iPhone for last 6 months have retina display, why cant palm after 6 months get a retina display? Why are we always behind?
Plus H/P needs to buy some text predictive company to get better VKB

hold your phone 14 inches from your eyes instead of 12 and voila! retina display! (not that anyone cared about that till steve jobs said they did!)

lol

Really cheesy if you actually know this fact. It is kinda genius on Apple's part to take something abstract and market it as a new technology and the masses take it in.

Effing brilliant.

@GFS

+100
Well done Mr. GFS, well done! PoTD award from me. =)

you wrote: "why are we so behind?"

Are you an employee of HP/Palm? If not, why do you comment on Palm as though you are with the company? Nothing against your post, as I see this often on many sites. While I think your point is valid, this is where your purchasing power makes or breaks companies. If an apple iphone is superior, or more suitable for you, then buy the iphone, don't buy Palm. You're locking yourself into a company that just isn't making you happy.

Palm will either understand at some point or another that they need to build phones that are better than the competition or they will go out of business. If they are unable to satisfy their customer's requirements, they will lose them.

As to whether or not this rumor is true, or even if the display is reasonably competitive (when it does come out) is certainly another discussion. The point I'm trying to make is that if Palm just isn't doing enough, well, maybe it's time we spend our money on devices that are providing timely updates with hardware that actually is better.

My thoughts exactly. Why is Palm merely TRYING to keeping up with the competition when they should be TRYING to lead the competition. But at this point I am just glad to hear some sort of leak regarding a new phone. I will give Palm the benefit of the doubt and say that it is hard to be an innovator when you only joined forces with HP 3 months ago. They are still working out the kinks, I'm sure. Hopefully great INNOVATIVE things to come after the "mansion"......I hope this mansion is in Beverly Hills!

how do you know what they try to do? Your post sounds like as if you know the coming devices and the specs. You don't I'm sure. Why don't we all just wait until they released the stuff. Then we can tell what they _accomplished_ to do. Not what we thought they were trying. They don't talk to us much do they? So how can we tell what they're brewing right now.

No, not yes.

The Droid had a 854 x 480 screen A YEAR AGO. The iPhone now has a super high res "retina display" and phones are moving in that direction to match it.

Why does Palm engineer to be outdated day 1?

Seriously?!?! If the phone is less than 4" than anything above 480 x 800 is pointless. Even the Pre's screen is pretty good and it's only 320 x 480. Sooo...

Negative, the Droid slams the pre hard with sharpness. Own both and have read several entire kindle books on the Droid with a tiny font.

I just hope we don't have to wait for 5 months before we see the "mansion". If I remember correctly the Pre started getting talked about and leaked in January but didn't debut until June. I hope the mansion isn't so slow to appear.

no keyboard! what the heck! is their problem! that was one of the best features! THEY BETTER NOT MESS THIS ONE UP LIKE THEY DID THE PRE! I SWEAR! palm buch of slackers :-!

No, No and No

I'm not interested if there is not a physical key board. Something like the Samsung Epic is what I'm looking for but with WebOS. I think they should offer an all touch phone like the EVO and a version with a key board like the Epic.

I love and need a good keyboard with my multi-function phone. I would very much appreciate a slightly larger keyboard than the one currently used on the Pre. A slightly larger screen would make this eminently doable. If I had my choice it would be a landscape hinge rather than a slider, so I can adjust the viewing angle.

I write a great deal on my phone. When I have spur of the moment thoughts and ideas, no matter where I am, I need a fast predictable input environment that permits accurate and rapid editing.

User populations that tend to enjoy full keyboards include (1) heavy multitasking personalities, (2) content creators who need to compose significant documents quickly and accurately and (3) individuals with visual impairments who benefit from specific button locations.

If Palm really wants to extend productivity they should put together better voice voice input/navigation and even full fledged dictation. This would really help WebOS in my opinion.

Cue up all the people that will not claim "we never really wanted a physical keyboard anyway".

Cue all the people who will say that they don't mind a virtual keyboard as long as Palm does it right - whatever that means.

Cue all the poeple who will say that he difference between Palm's virtual keyboard and other companies' is that Palm will do it right - whatever that means.

Ooh, a challenge! I'd say for me, "doing it right" means a keyboard that won't give me hand cramps, that I can easily dismiss so I can review a message on the full screen (and can easily call back once I'm done reviewing), and that I can type on without looking with minimal typos, either through good layout or good auto correction.

BlindType might be pretty dern close to right: http://www.blindtype.com/

Now owned by Google with native support coming in the next build of Android.

Really?! Bah!

I would like a virtual keyboard that I can easily turn on/off, and, when in the "on" state, lets me easily switch it from opaque (and takes up "space" in the gui layout), translucent (and takes up "no space" (i.e. floats above other content) in the gui layout).

Translucent is convenient because the web page or email can occupy my full screen, rather than 1/2 my screen. After two months I'll have the keys memorized anyways, so it would be nice to switch from opaque to a translucent keyboard.

Okay.

I won't buy the new phone if it doesn't have a physical keyboard.

Is that what you meant?

I definitely want the option of a virtual keyboard, but I LOVE the full keyboard on the vertical sliding Pre. It makes the whole idea of "Just Type" work beautifully. Horizontal sliders are too clunky.

it will be interesting to see how they implement Just Type on a phone with a physical keyboard...

don't you mean 'virtual keyboard'?

I know some people (like my fiancee) that need to have a Physical keyboard. It's a tactile reason... well I hope those that didn't want a keyboard are pleased with the specs

I prefer a physical keyboard. A larger screen may work but it really depends on the form and ease of holding it for long periods.

Is 800x480 definitely going to be a *larger* screen? (I mean, it'll definitely be larger than the Pre's, but will it be so large that it wouldn't fit in the Pre's form-factor?) I hope it's just a higher-res screen on similar real estate.

I'd also prefer a physical keyboard. I am a very big guy, with very big hands, and very big thumbs. Yet the Pre's keyboard is nearly perfect. (If the top row were 2mm lower on the slide-plate, it *would* be perfect.)

Hard to say the size exactly, but if true it will be a slightly different look then the pre, it would go from the current 3:2 aspect ratio now to a 16:9, better for most video content, but a taller or thinner depending on size and borders around the screen.

This is the one thing I DO NOT want to see on a new Palm phone. I absolutely cannot stand this push toward ridiculously long, ridiculously narrow screens on computer monitors and phones. Monitors are being branded as "full HD" and being snapped up by customers who don't realize that they've just given up 120 vertical pixels (going from 1920x1200 to 1920x1080).

Why would anyone want a tall, narrow screen on a touchscreen phone? It makes any portrait keyboard cramped horizontally, it makes small text on full (non-mobile-optimized) websites even harder to read, and it offends my sense of natural geometry.

Is there really anybody that watches so many movies on their phone that they can justify such a stupid aspect ratio? I don't get it.

Am I the only one that is thinking that the Pre's screen, including the gesture area, is approximately this aspect ratio? The extra pixels could be dedicated to a number of different uses other than cards, such as notifications or even the virtual keyboard (albeit a very small one).

Discuss...

There's no way it's gonna be able to fit in the PreOne's form factor.

I, too, would like a physical keyboard... with just an extra 2mm above the top row.

:(

Guess I'm gonna have to keep waiting.

Another big-hands dude here that loves the Pre's KB. I fuss about some stuff related to the Pre but the Keyboard has NEVER been one of them. Best mobile KB I have ever used, period.

Palm's bread-and-butter is the portrait KB... Surely they wouldn't leave it behind now, when it's just about perfect?

sign me up as well to the camp of 'prefer physical keyboard'

AYE! +1

Agreed.

If it's going to come without a physical keyboard, I don't want to believe.

I hope this is just unfounded rumour, to be honest.

A physical keyboard is great if it is done right. Not too big, not to small but just right. I personally think the Pre was not "just right". Close but not right. It was crammed and the keys where not easy to push. However I was just afraid that Palm would come out with a new phone that was like the Black Berry Torch. TRAGIC. Once I saw that phone it scared me into wanting a virtual keyboard. I have never had a virtual keyboard but I will say that it took me months to get use to the Pre's small keyboard. So I am sure that I could easily adjust to a virtual keyboard. But I don't think everyone should start to worry. Palm is not dumb enough to give up a physical keyboard forever. I think they are simply going to give us options to choose from. After all isn't that what we want as webos users?

Screen yes (anything about physical size?), but lack of physical keyboard = non-starter for me personally. I know others arereally keen for such a device, and, hey, fill your boots, it's just not for me...

yay!! Bring on the new devices. Hopefully it's more than one phone

No physical keyboard = no sale for me.

+1

agreed. No physical keyboard = no sale.

Agree 100%

+4 i need a keyboard

+3, I want a keyboard....Swype may change my mind though.

I have an Epic for work (I still have my Pre as a development bench), but I find myself using Swype more than the keyboard for short things. Typing emails, I prefer the physical keys.

If I wanted a device without a keyboard there are some good choices out there. PALM - GIVE US NEW HARDWARE WITH A REAL KEYBOARD.

Me too. If I don't get a keyboard, I might as well get an iPhone. A keyboard is a deal-breaker for me.

Ever more reason for me to continue the purchase of more bad ESN Pre Pluses, so I have replacements.

I rather die in a Castle than to live in a Mansion in that case.

Castle v. Mansion. Nice catch.

Actually Dieter, the Pre was Castle, Pixi was Eos/Pixie.

That's what I wrote! Damn fingers!

Fixed, thanks!

I agree. The only device I'll buy with a virtual keyboard is the PalmPad (I only hope they have a different name because people really need to stop using names similar to the fruit; maybe call it the PalmPaq -- joking).

To win all the fruit name users over, maybe we can pay homage to the one that is given credit (though undeserved) and name it the PalmJob. That would be....what? do I know what that means? of course I know what that..... oh.... uhh ohh.... okay, maybe that wouldn't be such a great name for a new Palm Pad type thingy.... Just forget that I typed anything here.

Nothing to see here.... move along.....

Oh, Steve Jobs deserves credit... for being able to actually tell that many people that they want something. I don't know of anyone else who has the power to tell people "You want this even if you don't want this, because I say you want it."

Add me to the list. I've tried virtual keyboards. For one-handed typing, they're about as fast for me as I can type one-handed on a Pre. However, most of my typing is two-handed, and I'm faster doing that than using a virtual keyboard.

Yep; If true, what a waste of time and effort the past ~16 months has been with webOS for me. Might be the push to send me to Android.

There are two reasons that I'm interested in a virtual keyboard:

1) no more moving parts, so easier to get better build quality

2) potentially faster typing since you don't have to depress a key, just tap a screen.

Of course this comes at the expense of occluding part of the screen for the keyboard. But I'm ready for a virtual keyboard.

As far as the rest of the specs, what matters to me:

1) Big screen - nice readable fonts at small resolution to make web browsing more reasonable w/o relying on the mobile web.

2) Big battery - I'd like to get through the day with moderate usage w/o requiring a charge.

3) Smooth Performance - the stutters and slowdowns on my Sprint Pre drive me up a freaking tree. Consistent smooth performance trumps speed. Which means (probably) 1GB RAM to avoid swapping.

4) Apps - I realize that this is outside the direct control of HPalm, but I can't tell you how frustrating it is to not be able to use some of the apps that are available on the iPhone and Android. Everywhere I turn, there's someone advertising an app that I'd love to have, but not on WebOS. And the apps that are already on WebOS have to work better. (e.g. Gmail integration, YouTube videos playing immediately like they do on Android rather than watching a spinning wheel for 2 minutes despite plenty of bandwidth, etc).

agreed. i keep trying to make a case for this phone but i get the smirk from iphone/droid users when we start comparing apps and media downloads...when i see that spinning circle i want to vomit.

One *huge* reason for having a physical keyboard. I can type without looking based on feel. That is very important as I spend a lot of time driving and I can type on my Pre with one hand while I keep my eyes on the road.

A virtual keyboard would increase the danger of my driving and be quite unsafe to use while driving.

What is this, Palm? Some kind of iPhone joke? Dont you see portrait qwerty is huge selling point (especially in environment where almost nobody does portrait qwerty)? On the other hand - better something than nothing (or webOS printer)...

ADD a virtual KB is OK, as long as they KEEP THE KB like the Pre.

I loved my Treo, but could never deal w/friends' phones that had no physical keys. I kept the Treo for 6+ years. I'll do the same w/ this Pre if there's no KB.

will wait for physical portrait keyboard. Thank you very much...

Where have there been any hints to this other than the anonymous tip? Why would Palm change their aspect ratio, making scaling current apps much more difficult, when they could just as easily release a 640x960 phone? I think this is a guess and is not going to be a real phone.

Current Pre = 480/340 = 1.41 aspect ratio
Current Pixie = 400/320 = 1.25 aspect ratio
Rumored phone = 800/480 = 1.67 aspect ratio

As you say, if this aspect ratio is correct, the field is indeed getting a little crowded, isn't it? Why bother?!?

Don't go tell anyone, but Pre has 480/320=3/2=1.5.
Yeah.

800x480? Nexus 1 right?

Found a site that compiled phones/mobile devices by pixels..(resolution?) sizes vary..

http://techiser.com/type/800x480-display-resolution

Whatever. I like my physical keyboard, but I just want a new Palm phone. I'll get used to virtual keyboard.

I agree. I like having a physical keyboard, but would purchase a virtual kbd phone if the rest of the hardware was compelling. I love the ease of webOS too much to switch to android or iPhone. With that said, if the hardware is not up to snuff, then I'll consider an android, tho it pains me to say so. I'd have to stay with sprint either way.

Hopefully they'll announce 2 flavors of the phone; with kbd & naked.

I would GREATLY prefer a physical keyboard. Portrait for that matter.

Let's hope another leak for a keyboard model is coming too. Palm/HP has to realize they have tons of keyboard fans out here.

Non-Physical is okay with me, but the only way is if we have this on the Palm Mansion:

http://forum.swype.com/showthread.php?1047-Swype-on-WebOS

Vote please!!

Why vote for that? According to Dieter it is only "pretty good". :P

It would be pretty bad for some models to have a keyboard and some not. Apps tend to be written for one or the other. If you have some models without a keyboard then developers will pretty much assume there is no keyboard on a given device and design accordingly. For example, why put any hardware buttons on a game when a lot of devices don't have them. You would just do the software ones.

if text input was handled at the OS level, this wouldn't be an issue.

Nope. If a virtual keyboard is coming up, the the developer has to accommodate that. You have to make sure that the user can still see what they need to even though the screen is reduced.

I believe its one of many. Mr. Twitterpants (Sood) is to fired up about just '1' device. I say 3 phones and a slate. 1 slab, 1 slider, and 1 pixi like candy bar, and a 7 & 10" slate.


Pinch my I'm dreaing.....

Two sliders: Portrait AND Landscape.

+1 brother!

"but we'll be curious to see if Palm can rise above the mix of 'pretty good' virtual keyboards on Android phones and get theirs up to par with the iPhone and Windows Phone."

Wow, "pretty good", huh? If Swype, Smart Keyboard Pro, Blind Type, and Swiftkey are just "pretty good", then Palm's chances are less than nil.

I really hope this rumor is false.

+1

I'm not sure how I feel about this. The physical keyboard is one of the reasons I bought the Pre in the first place. I like the haptic feedback, and I like how you get more screen space to review a message you're composing if half your screen isn't taken up with a keyboard. However, the Pre's keyboard gives me thumb cramps if I type on it for too long.

I'll wait and see how well it's implemented. That implementation could either keep me with Palm or push me somewhere else.

This.

Sounds good, just build 4 different form factors so folks can stop the its not for me; 1. portrait/landscape 2. virtual 3. candy bar

That's one way to solve the "Oreo" problem. Virtual KB Not for me though.

If we can get a thinner device with a bigger screen then i am willing to switch to a virtual keyboard.
Code name mansion? Where did this come from?

In my mind, This next phone needs to have at the least the following to keep up with current smartphone contenders.
3.5" screen,
800x480 resolution
4G capable
8MP camera with auto focus and digital zoom.
HDMI out
Latest in battery technologies.
(maybe removable sd card slot?)

BUT, by the time HPalm releases their hardware i'm sure competitors will have something better already. So they better have something that blows my minimum expectations away.

Why not just get an EVO?

If Palm is just going to play "catch up" with their next device they might as well not even bother.

Because the EVO does not run WebOS.
What good is killer hardware without the right operating system? :)

I don't want a phone that is the size of a brick so I will never get the EVO. 3.5 or 3.8 is fine for me.

you forgot a faster processor.Maybe 1.2ghz or faster.Maybe a dual processor if possible.

"8MP camera with auto focus and digital zoom."

How about auto focus, image stabilization and an Optical Zoom?

It needs to be BETTER than the competition, not just match it.

It would be even better if the camera was done by Nikon or Canon. (Someone just released a phone with Carl Zeiss optics)

No keyboard = no purchase for me. I'm not intersted if it doesn't have a physical keyboard. Give me the option to use a virtual keyboard if I want but include real keys.

If you want a virtual keyboard

Not interested if there's no physical keyboard. It's nice to have such a device for those who like it, but I certainly hope they also have a new device similar to the Pre.

great another rumor.. im tired of them.. bring on some concrete info. lets go leaked picture leaked specs. something solidddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddddd comon palm

Apart from the resolution, I welcome this news. But 960x640 is the way to go nowadays, plus it makes scaling apps so much easier.
I'm skeptical because of this Android-style messy resolution...

Why is 16x9 messy resolution? It's different from a fruit but that doesn't mean it's messy. The only downside I could think is that porting may not be quite as easy though if the VK is correct you would have more realestate for a typing area with a virtual portrait keyboard.

Well if this phone has at least a four inch screen. Then I could get used to it. It really will come down to the hardware as a whole. I'm more interested in 2.0 of webos as far as the rest of this year is concerned. However I want another phone released from hpalm asap. Just to get more interest in webos if nothing else. I must admit that it's hard typing on the Pre's tiny keyboard. So I'd probably get the next phone released, keyboard or not. I figure, if I can handle typing on the pre, then I should be able to adjust just the same.

look I don't care ijust want to upgrade

I would prefer a real keyboard, but if it's as good as the iPhone than it's doable, however it better have a higher res display than that, I'm talking 960x640 iPhone matching res.

Part of my love affair with Palm has been the physical keyboard, this goes back to my first Treo. I had a Cassiopea before that (I know, not a phone) but it used a virtual keybard and it really was a pain in the ass.

Palm, you're losing me a little at a time and it breaks my heart because I still believe in you and your OS, but you need to keep me happy with choices and let me carry your smart phones knowing I've got "the latest and greatest".

I completely agree. I have waited so long to hear anything about the new WebOS device and this being the first real "news"? It sucks.

BIG YES!!! It's about time Palm released a phone with a big screen and no keyboard. I hate physical keyboards on phones -- ironic since I own a Pre. I've tolerated the Pre's keyboard mainly because using webOS is such a joy. But I am much more productive on a virtual keyboard, and I can't wait.

Physical keyboard FTW palm!!!

Palm/HP a really going the way of "MeeToo" instead of going to uniqueness in a sea of clones.

At least have 2 devices to give people a choice. Vertical slider with keyboard FTW man, and that's qft brother!

I would gladly sacrifice the physical keyboard for a phone with a competitive screen size running webOS... if this isn't made official sometime soon, it will be hard to avoid the avalanche of droids.

No physical keyboard = no sale. I've been typing since I was 13 and if it doesn't have a physical KB, I'm not interested.

I like both the physical and the virtual... more physical but the pre keyboard is a bit cramped. And while building a new device, how about a better res screen then the norm Palm? And I mean why keep up with everyone else, when you can do something better - and have others keep up with you! Set the trend, be the "leader" HP, not a follower.

Im with you. I like the virtual keyboard. I'll say this though, most physical keyboards are better than the Pres, The keys are way too cramped on the pre. If the next WebOS phone were to have a hard KB similar to the one on the Droid then I might stick with it.

HELL YES. I don't think anyone who typed an an iphone could honestly say that it isn't amazing - virtual keyboard is so much better in every way - one less part of the phone that can break, different language options, just much easier and fluid to type on - you don't have to force keys down (ahem, pre).
I truly hope this is true, and the new Palm phone does NOT have a physical keyboard. Now I just want an official announcement!

Funny comment. Personal preferences stipulated as facts! Very funny! Good one!

Yeah, I really like how it uses up half the screen as I type, too! And the tactile feedback of my finger pressing on flat glass is awesome!

Virtual FTW!

haha. +1

If this is true I'm even more appreciative of the forum contributors who helped me create my Pre Plus on Sprint. I could go another year with the Pre Plus without needing to "upgrade" to the downgrade of a virtual keyboard.

I'd prefer a physical keyboard. But I'll settle for a virtual one. At this point I really don't care as long as some new hardware is being released.

you said it.

If I wanted a slab I'd have an iPhone or an EVO. The physical keyboard is one of the few distinguishing factors in favor of the Pre. Hopefully there will be a new model with keyboard also.

Whether you like it or not, touch-screen phones with physical keyboards are a dying breed. Virtual keyboards are so much better in my opinion. I just can't believe Palm has yet to offer a virtual keyboard to those of us who want it on the Pre.

You know what's "better" than virtual keyboards? Physical keyboards.

You can give the device keyboard shortcuts as commands to do something instantaneously... all the way from something simple, like page up/down... to more complex things, like activating USB mode so that you can recover your data & pics, because you just cracked your screen!!!

This thing better come with a microSD slot or something, or people are gonna be pissed.

I won't be pissed about the lack of microSD, that is what cloud storage and streaming is for. Just make it adequate for everyday uses (16GB - 24 GB) because eventually we won't need massive amounts of storage on a device. Who actually has their entire music/movie collection on their device and really uses it?

Unless you are somewhere without an internet connection, like an airplane, or subway, or many office buildings in major metro areas.

Cloud based storage is a nice feature, but it is no substitute for (a) substantial on-phone memory or (b) an SD slot.