Unless you are apart of the alternate reality know as the geek-a-sphere, then you probably have not heard about the upcoming Palm Pre, exclusive to Sprint.
While this device rivals the iPhone in several ways (one of them being multitasking), this device is doomed to fail--although through no fault of it's own (with one exception).
Dude, where's my App?
After being inspired by jailbreaking hackers, Apple launched an app store which everyone from Google Android to Blackberry copied.
To my knowledge, Apple has over 30,000 apps while Android has a few thousand (note: I have no clue what Blackberry's numbers are).
If Palm Pre launches without some App momentum behind them, they may not attract many users because their too busy coveting Stanza, Ocarina or Joost which are on the iPhone (but may not be elsewhere).
Solution: Palm Pre needs to entice the iPhone developer community in order to attract the masses by the thousands.
With many iDevelopers in an uproar against Apple over a delay of payment, now would be the perfect time to "steal away" developers from Steve Jobs.
My suggestion? Offer the first 10,000 developers 100% commission for the first month of operation, and extend that offer for another month for those who end up in the top 10.
Compare yourself, with thyself
When Sprint launched the Instinct, one of their first mistakes was comparing themselves against the iPhone. Not only did Apple receive free advertising, but it showed just how clear the screen was.
Palm (and Sprint) should let the pundits compare and contrast the phones, and not marketing execs (unless they want a public backlash).
Palm and Sprint are doing a great job of this this far, although I fear desperation for attention might kick in ruining everything (especially with WWDC rolling around in June).
Solution: Highlight your phone, wait for the Apple mania to pass (give it two weeks) before proceeding to the next idea below.
Palm Pre What?
While many people have heard of Palm--at least in the corporate world--very few in the mainstream have heard of Palm Pre.
Let's face it, everyone has heard about the iPhone. I know plenty of kids (8 years or younger) who know exactly what an iPhone is and (sadly) think nothing can compare to it.
Suggestion: Since neither Palm or Sprint can match Apple's market share (at least immediately), my suggestion is they introduce the world to the Palm Pre via talk shows like Oprah and Ellen.
They should focus on why the Palm Pre is "Oprah/Ellen friendly," and then give one to every member of the audience (with 6 months free service).
This would generate headlines beyond the realm of geek, and help establish Palm as a serious iConpetitor.
Conclusion: You are probaly wondering why I, an iFanatic would seek Palm and Sprint's success, instead of their demise.
Truth be told while I probably would never exchange my iPhone for a Palm Pre (at least without seriously testing the Pre), I do want a strong rival to appear against Apple, instead of these half baked attempts by the Blackberry Storm (who needs a UI design for their phone) and Google Android (who has a software hardware dissconnect on the HTC).
Palm is currently my best hope that a serious iRival will emerge which will not only save both companies from financial ruin (that would be Palm and Sprint), but it would spare me the agony of hearing "Hi, I'm an iPhone--and hi, I'm an Android Phone" in the not so distant future.
--Posted via iPhone