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See, The Palm Pre Can Be Offered For Free

from the was-it-such-a-ridiculous-suggestion? dept

A little over a month ago, I suggested that Sprint and Palm were making a big mistake in not offering the Palm Pre for free (more specifically, saying that Sprint should subsidize the full price). I don't think I can recall a post where more people told me I was so totally wrong. People insisted it was the dumbest idea ever, and that it would harm the brand value of the Pre, while costing Sprint way too much money. Yet, I still stand by that claim. Sprint doesn't make money selling the phone, it makes it by getting people to sign up for at least two years of Palm Pre service -- which is on the higher end of the service scale. The Pre is not as good as the iPhone, and did very little to really stand out from the competition. So the way to get around that is to offer the device for free.

At least some people seem to agree.

The device is now being offered in the UK... exactly as I suggested: free with a two year contract. At the same time, through some tricky step following, you can actually get the device for free in the US as well. I don't see how that takes away from the prestige of the device at all. If anything, it's only going to help make it easier for some people to at least try it out as a phone.

Of course, my other big complaint with the Palm Pre -- its weak developer support still stands. Famed developer Jamie Zawinski just wrote about his absolutely ridiculous experience trying to get two simple apps available on Palm Pre phones. It's taken months, and they're still not available, even though he wants to make them available for free. Instead, as with the iPhone, the "approval" process of getting apps into the app store are positively ridiculous. I had been seriously considering getting a Palm Pre (in fact, a few months ago, I was positive I was going to get one), but without real developer support, it's just not worth it. I'll wait until a decent Android phone is available instead.

Filed Under: palm pre, pricing
Companies: palm


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  1. identicon
    Pauly, 1 Oct 2009 @ 11:24am

    Doesn't anyone have patience anymore?

    Remember the first gen iphone?
    Remember the baby app store?
    Remember how long it took to get new apps approved?
    Remember waiting for three years to get cut/copy/paste?
    Remember waiting for three years to get MMS?

    Why are people so quick to persecute Palm, who clearly raised the bar in the smart phone/PDA market?

    The Pre is new, innovative, sleek, and like every other brand new phone, has a few bugs to work out, which they're doing far faster than Apple has. Cut them some slack, and stop being such iphone snobs!

    And don't forget... Palm had thousands of "apps" long before the iphone was even born!

    Play nice kids!

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