After reading Andrew's full-throated defense of the Treo over at Treonauts, I was slightly abashed to realize that the Treo really does still have a very nice form factor - it's just that Palm got it right early and hasn't managed to significantly improved on it. To wit:
The Treo 680, 750 and 755p are still the smallest and lightest smartphones featuring both a large high resolution touchscreen and full QWERTY keyboard on the market today!!! [The Treo weighs 5.4 ounces while competing devices in this category are between 5.6 and 6.33 ounces.]
Exclamation points aside, he's right that a combination of a one-handed QWERTY keyboard and a hi-res screen is still an ideal form factor and one that I'd like to return to someday. "Someday" being "when Palm finally gets off their duff and throws a 320x320 screen into the Treo 750," because that really shouldn't be all that difficult (they've done it just fine with the PalmOS 755 and 680).
However, in the past few days I've realized that some other company is likely to challenge Palm in this particular form factor space - that company just might be Samsung. Mobility Today is one among many sites showing a photo and video of this sweet-looking Blackjack-esque device. The spec sheet is literally a list of the things that Palm has failed to deliver on (in the US, anyway):
- Windows Mobile 6
- HSDPA (ok, they've done that)
All on a thin little touchscreen device looks to be 320x320. You can watch the video below to get a better feel for it, but don't look at the "mouse" feature too much. The less that's said about that crime against user interface on a smartphone, the better.
Video after the break.