Lets not beat around the bush: the 750v is the Treo you want to own. It handles phone, data, and PDA applications well and it does it in a slick looking interface. Of course, everyone wants to know about the improved form factor of the 750v. Yes, it is improved by the integrated antenna, a space-efficient miniSD slot, and the slightly reduced weight. For me, though, the form-factor is only part of the story. The rest is Windows Mobile 5.
I know many of the users on this site are also long-time Palm aficionados and so this review is geared towards you. I honestly think it is likely that a Windows Mobile Treo is going to be the device youll want to own in the very near future.
On Switching to WM5
When I left for England I took my Treo 650 and every accessory I could find and dumped them in a box. I tracked down every piece of Palm software and burned it to CD with a text file of registration codes and it all went on E-Bay. Ive owned a Palm device since pre-ordering the Pilot 1000, so this was a big step for me. I figured I might buy a replacement upon my return in 12 months.
Now, just six weeks later, I own a Treo 750v and I never want to struggle with the Palm OS again. From the moment I got my 650 it repeatedly crashed and even after innumerable updates it still had trouble hot-syncing. Memory was always an issue, too. Finally, let's face it, the interface was and is ancient. The phone application has barely changed from the Visor Phone days and that is not a "good thing." The 700p seems like a stop-gap improvement. The operating system is still a kludged together piece of software affectionately known as "Frankengarnet." I'm happy to be done with it.
On the Outside
The specifications for the 750v can only tell you so much. It is roughly the same size as other Treos, except just a titch thinner. At 5.4 ounces it weighs one ounce less than the Treo 700 models. Most importantly: this model has no antenna. Palm's marketing tells us, insultingly, that the removal of an external antenna was developed for the refined European sensibility. Apparently we Americans will take any brick that is shoved under our noses. Actually, we love our sleek, sexy, and comfortable tech as much as the next gearhead. And in that respect the 750v is a delight to hold. It is now much more like the Palm Pilots of yesteryear that sat cradled comfortably in your hand. The new "soft-touch" material is also great. The color of the device is a deep bluish black offset with metallic silver.
Now lets take the full tour of the outside of the device. On the top is the ringer switch. It too is much nicer than on other Treos: black, flush, with just enough ridges to catch a grip. Noticeably (and thankfully) absent on the top is the SD card slot. Although I never lost one, occasionally my cards would pop out by accident. The protruding card always annoyed me. Instead, down on the right side we find the new miniSD card slot. The slot is covered by a door (use a fingernail to open it). Inside, next to the slot, is a very convenient reset button. Now there is no need to fiddle with the battery compartment door for a reset. Frankly, though, my unit hasnt crashed or needed a reset since I started using it more than a week ago. The IR port is still there, also on the side. I do wonder when Palm will finally dump it. I havent beamed in eons.
The bottom of the unit has a the same connector for syncing and power as previous Treos. The cables are now completely separate, however - one for syncing and another for power as is done with Palm's recent PDAs (like the T|X). Yes, we still suffer from the 2.5mm headset jack on the bottom. Its a shame because I'd much prefer a 3.5 for music - or even a separate one on the top. The microphone opening has been improved as well as it is now set within a little plastic well that seems designed to funnel sound from the front and pick up sound when the unit is set upside-down on a table for speakerphone use.
The left side has the volume buttons and the side button. These too have seen a makeover from my 650s buttons and side switch. I actually preferred the 650's buttons, they were more substantial. On the 750v they have a lower profile.
The back of the unit sports the 1.3 megapixel camera, the cute self-portrait mirror and a sharp looking square grill for the speakerphone's speaker. The stylus clicks out from the back right. The stylus is an attractive combination of black and silver, plastic at the top and heavier metal at the bottom. Contrary to a rumor I heard earlier, it does not "expand" like the original Tungsten T stylus.
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