palm pixi review

Palm makes no extraordinary claims about battery life on the Pixi.

In our tests, the phone lasted about one day for normal usage that included listening to handful of MP3 files, placing a few calls, and checking the web and email occasionally.

We liked how easy it was to access airplane mode (you just press and hold the power button until you see the prompt) to turn off 3G access quickly and save power.

In those modes, the Pixi lasted more like two full days for occasional MP3 listening but not phone calls or Web browsing. The small size of the device means the battery takes a typical charge – essentially matching the power consumption of a Nokia or Motorola smartphone, but not the longer battery life of a BlackBerry.

airplane

MODE: The Pixi lasted about one day, but you can quickly put the phone into airplane mode to save battery power

Organiser

We've mentioned many of the organisational features on the device – such as the ability to see multiple schedule items from several services (such as Yahoo and Google Cal) in one combined schedule.

You can also split out services to see their own schedule. Syncing calendars took some time – about three minutes for a loaded Google Calendar over a 3G connection – but that time was not surprising since Palm is upfront about the time it takes to download this data, parse it into Synergy and display the information.

Overall, the PIM functions on the Pixi match the capabilities of the Pre in every way and the device is even more suited to the hectic lifestyle of the business professional in that it is lighter and more portable than the Pre, so it can easily become part of your daily routine.

We also like the schedule alerts which pop up on the screen.

Connectivity

Holy smokes – we found one troubling problem with the Palm Pixi when we tried to connect it to a PC for the first time.

The USB cover, located on the right side of the device, is so hard to use that it is almost comical.

As you are holding the USB cable, you have to hold the cover back in order to insert the cable. The cover is so hard to grasp, that you might have to try several times just to insert the cable. Or, frankly, you might just decide just to rip off the cover.

Once connected, you can charge the device, use it for media syncing or enable the device as a USB drive. We tested the Pixi with both a Sony laptop and a MacBook and both platforms worked well for all three activities (as long as we used an older version of iTunes 8).

Another small gripe: the Palm Pixi does provide a GPS chip, so you can use the device with the included navigation app (in the US, it is from Sprint) to get directions from one place to another. However, Google maps does not offer navigation like it does on Android handsets, and the major GPS vendors - including Navigon and TomTom - have chosen to ignore the Palm webOS so far.