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Palm Quatro First Picture ?

Possible First Image Of Next Generation Palm Quatro Smartphone Reveals Unusual T-Swivel Design

Palm Quatro

Over the weekend a mysterious new smartphone (pictured above) sporting an unusual “T-Swivel” design with a full size QWERTY keyboard + large rectangular touchscreen made its first appearance and some people are now wondering if this may be one of the new type of devices (branded Quatro?) due to be released by Palm in 2009.

Palm-Quatro-Keyboard

Apparently, the main clue that this may actually be a real prototype of a forthcoming Palm smartphone is the fact that the key layout (detail above) is literally identical to that found on the Centro – for example you can clearly see the top right “P” key showing the “Screen Brightness” function and the rubber keyboard may also be a clue.

Separately, under the keyboard we also get to see what appears to be a touchpad/trackpad as well as two dedicated but unlabeled hard buttons on either side.  At the top front of the device we also have a camera (for video calling) as well as the familiar round 5Way button and four dedicated buttons.

The interesting thing about this narrow “T-Swivel” design is that unlike other smartphones with a sliding keyboard (such as the T-Mobile G1) you can actually use it with just one hand – something that I personally find extremely important. 

In this respect, the fact is that after much experimentation most smartphones fall under one of three design types below:

  1. Touchscreen-Only (such as iPhone, BlackBerry Storm and HTC Touch HD)
  2. Front Keyboard + Small Screen (Treo, Centro, BlackBerry Bold)
  3. Combination Full Touchscreen + Sliding/Swivel Keyboard (T-Mobile G1, HTC Tilt)

A creative Treonaut had recently also suggested a large rectangular flip screen + front keyboard (concept image below) but the drawback is that it would make the smartphone extremely long and therefore not particularly practical.

Palm-Roteo-Concept

In terms of this Palm Quatro and its T-Swivel design I have to say that I’m not against the concept as long as the actual device looks great.  Unfortunately, for now at least the images of this prototype reveal a smartphone that is quite honestly extremely ugly and I sincerely hope that (if true) it will actually look considerably more polished when released.

In the meantime, as the final weeks of the year keep passing by, like many the biggest question on my mind remains whether Palm will actually make good on its promise to “unveil the new NOVA OS before the end of the year”… 

Mysterious T-swivel handset appears on Korean site [via Engadget]
Roteo Concept [via TC Forums]

Treonauts always want to be first


Posted by Andrew on December 8, 2008 at 08:52 AM

Palm Quatro

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Comments

26
by Larry | Dec 15, 2008 10:55:18 AM

This is really unattractive in my book and Palm will lose me if this ends up being the next generation with Palm operating system. My needs are that I must have infrared on my phone and I detest the Microsoft interface. The Treo Pro design is the device I want with the Palm interface. This swivel cute thing is fine for some but I want a non-cute, basic, business phone - not one full of gimmicks. This is really goofy and I'd get laughed out of the room in my business environment with this.

27
by dpaus | Dec 16, 2008 8:09:59 AM

Geez, people, lighten up! It's different, it's interesting, and it's worth discussing and exploring. Most importantly of all, whether you like its appearance or not, it IS innovative.

Personally, I find it intriguing. Tell me that it's got a 2 GHz AMD ultra-low-power dual-core processor, 32 GBytes of RAM, GPS, WiFi and a micro-USB port that can be used with a dongle that supports connection of an external monitor, keyboard and mouse, and I'll not only buy one, I'll ditch my laptop.

28
by Treonaut 680 | Dec 17, 2008 8:57:51 AM

Well, I really like palm and I'm glad to see they are waking up to the next generation, since they were the pioneers in all that touchscreen business.

What always attracted me to Palm was the simplicity and stability of the OS. When I upgraded to Treo 680, I was disappointed. It was far more instable. They already showed they are concerned about that when they declared they are going to change the OS.

Other problem I had was this darn SMALL SCREEN!! It looks like they are concearned about that also.

Well, the design leaves much to be desired, but I don't think they are going to leave it like that. With Treo Pro, they showed they are trying to improve on that aspect.

Given all that, I'm happy to see my concearns are their concearns.

I surelly hope the final design will be different, though. This looks like someone installed a Tungsten T|X's screen on a centro and customized the carcass... Since that's a non-official picture, that is even possible :)

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