We had not heard about Palm for a long time. The company famous for its PDAs fell into oblivion many years ago, and it was not until 2015 that it returned to the fray when TCL, a Chinese multinational that owns Alcatel, bought the brand. Two years of silence broke when in 2017 the possibility was mentioned that the firm would come back with an Android phone, a “Pepito”. That device has become reality today, and the truth is that it is not a mobile as such.
Palm’s “mobile” (which does not have a proper name) is a kind of large smartwatch. It is not a mobile phone to use, but it is synchronized with your current mobile. It is not a smartphone, it is a kind of accessory that, according to Palm, serves to “leave your mobile behind”. It’s kind of weird, and that’s why it’s interesting.
Palm, characteristics and technical specifications
DIMENSIONS AND WEIGHT: 50.6 x 96.6 X 7.4 mm – 62.5 grams
SCREEN : IPS / LCD 3.3 inches with HD resolution (445 ppi)
RAM :3 GB
PROCESSOR: Snapdragon 435
INTERNAL STORAGE: 32 GB
BATTERY: 800 mAh
OS: Android 8.1 Oreo
CAMERAS: Rear 12 megapixels; 8 megapixel front
OTHERS: USB type C, Gorilla Glass 3, facial unlocking, WiFi, 4G / LTE, Bluetooth 4.2, IP68
A mobile that synchronizes with your smartphone
Beyond the specifications, which can be clearly seen to be low-end, we must understand this device as what it is: an accessory. The phone can not be purchased separately, it is not available in a physical store. Because it can not, it can not be purchased outside of Verizon. The Palm mobile is an addition to the rate: you choose your monthly Verizon rate and you add a Palm Phone for 10 euros more per month.
It does not work on its own, but it has to be synchronized with an Android phone or iPhone, from which it receives the data connection, the signal, etc. This is thanks to NumberShare, a Verizon service that allows you to “use your mobile number on up to five connected devices.” In this way, your main mobile acts as a host and sends calls, messages and notifications to other devices.
Its interface is simple. Just press the only physical button you have to turn on the screen and access applications, which are arranged as if it were an Apple Watch. It has Google Play, so you can download all you want. To interact with them, the Palm mobile has a single touch button in the bottom frame. A touch will take you back, two touches will take you to the beginning and three touches open the multitasking.
As far as performance is concerned, you can expect a low-end one. Its 3 GB of RAM and its Snapdragon 435 will be responsible, together with the 800 mAh battery, to move Android 8.1 Oreo. It will work well for basic tasks, such as sending messages and navigating, as well as using Google Maps, but it may not stand out in games, sound or photography. It is not a mobile designed for that, but to help you disconnect from your main smartphone. This is where the “Life Mode” comes into play.
The “Life Mode”, the spearhead of the Palm Phone
What this San Francisco company has wanted to do with the Palm brand is to give a twist to its philosophy. The Palm Phone is focused on the disconnection, it’s like a Light Phone but something more advanced. The maximum exponent of this is the “Life mode”.
This mode deactivates each and every one of the connections that the device has, while activating the energy saving mode, while the screen is off. In this way, the user will not receive notifications, calls, messages or anything at all. It will only do so when you turn on the screen. In any case, you can always configure yourself to receive notifications of certain apps.
As we told you before, the device can not be purchased separately. The only way to get hold of it is with a Verizon plan and paying either $ 10 a month or $ 349.99 at the momet. Having a rate with Verizon is a sine qua non condition.
Will be available from November of this year in a single configuration of 3 + 32 GB. It is unknown if it will reach more markets that support technologies such as e-SIM.