The overall rating of a review is different from a simple average of all individual ratings.
Share this review on
Ahh, the joys of using your palm for pleasure...NOT THAT WAY! I'm talking about the Palm Tungsten T handheld PDA, a fully functional, palm sized computer. I must admit, I'm a bit biased being a computer enthusiast but, on the flip side, that also means that you can trust what I'm saying as truthful and enthusiastic. With that said, on to the review.
When the Tungsten T (TT) was initially released, it was heralded as the next generation of handheld devices. It has a unique sliding body which increases screen size by about ten percent. When closed, the TT is 9.5 centimeters (about 3.75 inches) in height, when open it is 11.5 cm in height (about 4.5 inches) and 1.5 cm (about .5 inch) thick. In closed position, the grafitti writing area is hidden. Very compact, though not something you want hanging in your shirt pocket behind the old pocket protector. But with the right soft case, it sits comfortably at your side, ready for action!
The TT comes with all the standard PDA software: Datebook, To Do List (now Tasks in later models), Address Book (Contacts), Notepad, Memo, Clock, etc. It still uses the original Grafitti user interface, which is a bit of a let down, because the newer Palm models have the Grafitti 2 interface and also allow direct input on the screen, so that your handwriting becomes typed letters. I've experienced handwriting recognition issues after prolonged inputting, but then again, I wrote a fantasy novel using the poor little TT, and that might be to blame. But, that's a minor negative because of all the positives the TT offers. The color screen is a fantastic hi-res 320 X 320 pixel screen, a huge leap forward from earlier models (m130, Palm VII, etc.), though not yet on a par with the SONY Clie.
The software bundled with the TT is great too. You get a trial version of the fantastic Documents To Go which allows you to tranfer spreadsheets, word processing, and now, slideshow documents from you desktop to your palmtop. Documents to Go also comes with Inbox To Go, a nifty mail organizaion program that synchronizes your desktop e-mail manager with your handheld so you can read e-mail on the go. You get a trial version of the Arcsoft Photo software which allows you to view photographs on your color screen. The TT comes with Bluetooth wireless technology for those of you savvy enough to wirelessly connect your hardware with Bluetooth cards. They enable you to surf the web wirelesly, transfer files, and hotsynch wirelessly. There's even a phone dialer included for your Bluetooth enabled cell phones. WOW!
One of the main additions to the TT, though, is the inclusion of a voice memo feature that allows you to turn the TT into a digital voice recorder. The mcirophone is on the side of the unit, which poses a problem when gripping the TT because you can accidentally begin recording a new memo every time you grasp it which is a mild inconveniece. But it is a great tool for writers, because you can speak your mind wherever you are, and get it all down, word for word and play it back whenever you want. Above the record/playback button on the side is a headphone jack for private listening.
There's also a speaker on the TT, located on the upper right hand corner. It outputs reasonably good sound, and if you download the free Realplayer for Palm OS 5, you can play MP3's with the TT! YEAH! But tthere's a drawback here. The audio playback is not quite as loud as some might like it, though there are other audio players (Aeroplayer, Pocket-Tunes) that are inexspensive and have equalizers that make auudio playback much better. There's also a software update for the audio file on the PalmOne website.
Aesthetically, the TT is a handsome little device. Its brushed metal exterior gives it a grown up appearance unlike the m100 series with ttheir juvenile plastic covers. Come on, I'm an adult here! The TT makes you feel like it. A round, central navigation button allows you to acccess all parts of the TT with ONE FINGER. Yes, that's right, all you need is a thumb to scroll through the programs, select one, and open it. It s the same for leaving the programs. You can also set the TT to power on by opening tthe sliding section and lengthening the screen, and set it to power off when you close the screen (but that might get annoying when your working on a document and you just want to close the screen).
The TT comes with 8 MB memory standard and has a SD memory slot in the top for attachment of an additional 16, 64, 128, 256, or 512 MB's of memory. It uses the ARM 144 Mhz processor, and Palm OS 5. Its a durable, dependable machine.
So, all in all, I've found the TT to be a faithful assistant, and invaluable writing tool before the acquisition of my new Mac G5 laptop. But I still use the TT for my everyday scheduling chores, and when I'm at the beach its gret for jotting down notes and editing projects I'm working on. And now that the TT is an "older" model, you can get it for a great price! When it first came out it sold for nearly $300 (US). Now its around $150 (US) and you can find it at authorized third party Palm dealers on the internet. I'd highly recommend it to anyone looking for a reliable, attractive, color digital assistant to mae their lives easier and give them less to have to remember. Ciao!