Palm’s new phone – the “Centro” – offers a price breakthrough for “higher end” smart phones. With a mid-october launch date. My prediction is that this is too little too late from Palm, already struggling to regain a market. The Treo was a significant improvement over earlier phones and PDAs, but Apple’s iPhone effectively blew the Treo design out of the water. Others will copy the iPhone and other good smart phone features but it seems Palm has just issued a “cheap” version of the Treo. This was too little too late to compete with the iPhone and coming Google phone
This *may* work depending on the expectation of users. If people who have held off on iPhones decide they can now afford a device that has the enhanced functionality of the Centro AND if the Google phone is delayed past Christmas (unlikely in my view), the Centro may be the boost Palm seems to desparately need. However, unlike the iPhone the Centro is unlikely to create a huge buzz. Unlike the iPhone which was a masterpiece of clever innovation and hype, the Centro can only brag about a price breakthrough – it is nothing like a technology breakthrough. A large screen at this price might have made this the “must have” gadget for high schoolers and soccer moms, but I don’t see this taking off.
The Google phone is likely to come out before Christmas and if it’s in this price range and more like the iPhone it’ll be the device of the year and yet another feather in Google’s oversized cap (and oversized market cap!)
IMHO LARGE screen sizes will be the key to success as phones evolve.
More on Google Phone from Business Week