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  • Unofficial patch lets you hang up Palm Pre calls by closing the slider

    by 
    Donald Melanson
    Donald Melanson
    10.19.2009

    You know how easy and natural it is to hang up a call on a cellphone by sliding it closed or flipping it shut? It's a small satisfaction that's been lost on touchscreen-only phones, but it would seem to still make sense on something like, say, the Palm Pre -- just not to Palm, it seems. Well, it looks like unofficial patch maker KeyToss has now finally stepped in and done what Palm hasn't, and produced a patch that does nothing more than let you end a call by closing the slider on your Pre. Who knows? You might even start hanging up on people just for the fun of it. Hit up the link below for all the necessary details on installing the patch.

  • Third-party Google Voice client hits the webOS App Catalog

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    09.10.2009

    It looks like it isn't just bluster from Palm when it comes to thinking differently about its app approval policy. Besides taking a pretty healthy stance on applications that deviate from its current standards, today 10 new titles have shown up for download... a Google Voice app being one of them. gDial Pro, a piece of software which started its life as a homebrew application, is now an official part of the beta store. The program lets you access Google Voice's full feature set (including a dialer), and no one seems very bothered by it. Here's hoping Palm keeps up the flow of new software to the Catalog (they're eating for two now) and they keep a healthy distance from rejection letters. [Via PreThinking]

  • The Palm Pixi is official, headed to Sprint this holiday season -- we've got hands-on and video!

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    09.09.2009

    The Palm Pixi has officially arrived, and if you're an avid reader of Engadget (you'd better be), this device should look a little bit familiar to you. We first broke specs and images of the phone -- codenamed Eos and the alternately-spelled "Pixie" -- back in April, when we nabbed what appeared to be a leak of a new, Centro-esque phone headed to AT&T. Today, Palm has announced that the Pixi -- a tiny, sleek webOS-based handset -- will be coming to Sprint this holiday season. The phone will hit shelves sans-WiFi (EV-DO Rev. A only here), with 8GB of storage onboard (a nice bump up from the rumored 4GB), 2 megapixel camera (with flash), a full QWERTY keyboard, and a minute, 2.63-inch, 320 x 400 capacitive display (guess they didn't get that HTC memo). Along with the new handset, Palm will offer five artist-designed back covers in the "Palm Pixi Artist Series" -- similar to Zune Originals and Dell's Design Studio laptops -- which can be purchased separately... of course. Touchstone owners take heart: those backs, as well as a separate black backing that you'll also pay extra for, are all compatible with the accessory. In addition to the hardware, Palm will be introducing a native Facebook app when the Pixi hits, as well as new Yahoo! and LinkedIn integration for Synergy. Right now no date for launch has been set, though Palm says the phone will be ready in time for the holidays. The company is also mum on price, but coupled with the news that Sprint will be slimming the Pre's entry point down to $149.99, we have to assume it's going to be in the $99-or-less ballpark. We had a chance to play around with the new phone, so read on after the break for our initial, early impressions.

  • Sprint support site says webOS 1.2 coming today, releases patch notes

    by 
    Ross Miller
    Ross Miller
    09.08.2009

    According to Sprint's official support pages, webOS 1.2.0 is officially heading out of the stable sometime today. There's lots of minor tweaks and updates here, a hefty refinement of the current system -- but a few of you already know that. Our Pre phones haven't started blinking yet, and there's still a chance the patch date is in error. Hit up the read link for the full list of changes, and be sure to let us know if you start getting any update notifications. [Via Pre Thinking]

  • Editorial: Palm, iTunes, and the ties that don't bind

    by 
    Nilay Patel
    Nilay Patel
    07.30.2009

    So I was out of town last week when Apple and Palm got into it over the Pre syncing with iTunes, and the more I think about it, the more ridiculous the situation has become. If you'll remember, the Pre shipped with a hack that allowed it to appear as an iPod, which was inevitably blocked by Apple, and Palm's latest move was to spoof the Pre's USB Vendor ID to make it look like an Apple product while simultaneously complaining to the USB Implementor's Forum that Apple improperly uses the field. Yeah, it's messy, and the end result is that while Palm is getting a lot of attention for jabbing at Apple, Pre owners are being left with a jury-rigged hack of a solution that will almost certainly be blocked by the next iTunes update -- and Palm's official advice is that you should hold off on updating iTunes to ensure Pre compatibility. Let's just say it: this is insane.

  • Google Voice app GV Mobile ported to jailbroken iPhones, web app version in the works

    by 
    Ross Miller
    Ross Miller
    07.28.2009

    So well-mannered, straight-laced iPhone users got a pretty big slap in the face yesterday by way of Apple's (and AT&T's, no doubt) total Google Voice rejection. Looks like jailbreakers are picking up the pieces, as GV Mobile developer Sean Kovacs -- whose app was in the iTunes store for some time before being yanked yesterday -- has ported the Voice client over to Cydia free of charge, although donations are gladly accepted. Even more interesting, but less concrete, Kovacs said he was already working on a web app version, possibly for submission to Palm's app catalog. No word on the fate of GVdialer, an app that was also unceremoniously pulled, but we wouldn't be surprised if it followed in similar footsteps. Read - GV Mobile now on Cydia Read - Sean Kovacs on Twitter

  • Palm makes Mojo SDK beta and docs publicly available, officially opens developer floodgates

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    07.16.2009

    digg_url = 'http://digg.com/gadgets/Palm_goes_public_with_Pre_webOS_SDK_and_docs'; Success! For all you developers hankering to get in on the webOS and Pre action (or at least see the action), your wishes have come true. Today Palm announced on its corporate blog that it would be making the Mojo SDK beta and accompanying documentation available to anyone who is interested... effective immediately. Furthermore, the company says it will begin taking submissions for new applications in the fall -- so if you're planning on getting something in, it's time to start cranking. For those of you haven't already torrented the previously available leak of the kit (or just want some real docs), this news should be music to your ears... er, eyes. Well what are you waiting for? Get downloading!Read - Palm blog postRead - Palm's developer site

  • Palm Pre gets upgraded to 1.0.4 (update: homebrew installs via email dead for now)

    by 
    Chris Ziegler
    Chris Ziegler
    06.29.2009

    We don't know exactly what's new yet, but Palm's released firmware version 1.0.4 for Pres on Sprint (not to say there are any other Pres out there at the moment, anyhow). Stay tuned for details.Update: Looks like the only changes here address security vulnerabilities -- and interestingly, Palm gives a shout-out to Townsend Ladd Harris (a Pre homebrewer no less) who helped find them. Cheers to that.Update 2: Sadly, Palm's plugged the hole that allowed homebrew apps on the phone without a jailbreak, though software you've already installed on the phone will continue to work. The hole that's been plugged was admittedly dangerous to leave open (installing apps via a link in email), though rooting and installing otherwise remain unchanged as far as we know.

  • Palm says licensing webOS "not a religious issue"

    by 
    Nilay Patel
    Nilay Patel
    06.26.2009

    Palm had its quarterly results conference call yesterday and although CEO Jon Rubinstein and CFO Doug Jeffries kept a pretty tight lid on the future product talk, they did say that licensing webOS to third parties isn't "a religious issue for us." That's pretty vague, sure, but we can't help but immediately think back to the golden age of Palm OS, when licensees like Sony put out amazing devices like the Clie PEG-NZ90 that we've lovingly mocked up with a webOS screenshot above -- we're sure Palm's upcoming handsets will be interesting in their own right, but we'd love to see a manufacturer like HTC riff on webOS the way it's tweaking Android. Of course, Jeffries also said Palm has "no plans at this time to even talk about" licensing, so this is all just a pipe dream for now, but let's not ruin the moment, okay? Hit the read link for the full call transcript.[Via GearLog]

  • Homebrew apps come to the Palm Pre

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    06.23.2009

    According to Dieter over at PreCentral, real, honest-to-goodness usable apps are starting to "trickle out" for the Pre / webOS. Apparently utilizing a loophole in the operating system which allows unsigned apps to be sideloaded through email, homebrewers have taken to the interwebs with small utilities like the tip calculator (pictured above). This comes just a day after a group of DIY'ers figured out a workable solution for getting software onto the phone without rooting, so obviously Pre hacking is moving along at a healthy clip. These are -- of course -- very early applications, so don't expect perfection, and there seems to be some concern that Palm might want to patch up this hole, as it leaves the phone vulnerable to less altruistic endeavors. While the latter point is reasonable to consider, we do have a piece of advice for the folks at the front of this movement: don't wait and worry on how Palm will react to this stuff. It's important to push platforms like webOS, and the Pre needs all the love it can get on the development side right now.Read - Right now: Install a Homebrew App without HackingRead - Homebrew Apps Tricking Out, but be careful

  • Pre apps successfully installed on non-rooted phone, world waits for details

    by 
    Tim Stevens
    Tim Stevens
    06.22.2009

    There have been no shortage of custom apps hitting the Pre already, including a number of old favorites, but all have required a little bit of roto-rooting ahead of time to lay the groundwork for such non-authorized code. That might change in the very near future thanks to the work of a trio of dedicated deviant coders going by the handles xorg, simplyflipflops, and Shaya Potter. Over the span of just a few days they managed to figure out how to package and sign custom apps in such a way that anything can be installed on a completely stock phone -- the only catch is they're waiting to see what Palm has to say about it before they release a full how-to. Since the company has its own plans of making most developers wait at least a few months before setting them free we can't imagine the response is going to be: "This is totally awesome, please tell the world our secrets." But, we'd be happy to be wrong.[Thanks, Bo]

  • Palm says no webOS SDK till end of Summer

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    06.19.2009

    So, you want to be a webOS developer, huh? That's great kid, we're excited for you, but there's a catch: Palm won't be handing out an actual SDK to most people until the end of Summer. In a post just published on the Palm Developer Network Blog, reps from the company say that although they've been cranking away on getting their full SDK in shipshape (the version given out to current devs is apparently pretty rough), they won't have anything for a broader audience anytime soon. In their words:With the Pre now in customers' hands and reports of webOS hacks in the news, we know that you are more anxious than ever to get access to the SDK and start developing for webOS.We've been working very hard on the SDK and are eager to open access on a wider scale, but the software and the developer services to support it just aren't ready yet.This should come as a bit of a blow to developers hoping to get cracking on Pre software, and will unquestionably turn those who can't bear the wait towards the fully stocked iPhone or Android platforms. However, Palm does say that they'll be opening the program up a bit wider, stating in the post that they plan to crank the number of devs with the early SDK in their hands up from "hundreds to thousands" over the next few weeks. Apparently, that's part of process the company is beginning to ration out access, building to a full release.Another bit of puzzling wordsmithing in this post comes in the form of the company's stance on homebrew and DIY "experiments" (their words) which have come to light in the past couple of weeks. So says Palm:As on any popular platform, we recognize that some developers will experiment in ways that cross official boundaries, but we believe that our formal offerings – and community efforts built around those offerings – will provide the best experience for the vast majority of webOS developers and users.So while it's not exactly a keep-off-the-grass statement, it certainly reads vaguely as to whether or not the company will lock out jailbreakers hoping to dive deeper into webOS. Further confusing the matter? Palm has just released the Linux source code used to compile the Pre's firmware, making the possibility of cooked / custom ROMs a very serious reality, and obviously opening the floor to a lot of said experimentation. Mixed messages? Yes. Our word to Palm right now? Put every effort into getting that SDK out, or you're at risk of quickly burning through all the good will you've just engendered.Update: We've added some info above which reflects Palm's statement that it will be considerably widening its pool of developers over the next few weeks with access to the early SDK.Read - An update on the early access program and the SDKRead - Open source packages

  • Palm Pre data tethering is a go, Sprint be damned

    by 
    Nilay Patel
    Nilay Patel
    06.15.2009

    Well, that was fast. Just a couple hours after we noted Palm warning against hacking webOS to allow data tethering on the Pre, the first set of instructions has popped up. It's not the cleanest hack we've ever seen -- you need to root your phone, enable SSH, and then configure your browser to run through a SOCKS proxy -- but it'll certainly get the job done in a pinch. Just don't go crazy, alright? We've got a feeling Sprint's watching Pre accounts with an eagle eye.

  • Palm webOS system upgrades mandatory; hacking scene forbidden from tethering

    by 
    Nilay Patel
    Nilay Patel
    06.15.2009

    We've seen a tremendous explosion in the webOS hacking scene ever since the Pre's firmware image leaked out -- between the easily-accessible restore more, Linux foundations and the directly-accessible HTML / CSS / Javascript application code, we've already seen everything from minor tweaks to full on NES emulation to Sprint activation hacks. In short, things are wide open at the moment, and people (including us) are excited by the possibilities -- but that doesn't mean Palm has to play along. In fact, two recent developments have us worried for the future of this happy little scene -- first, Palm's apparently forbidding the Pre Dev Wiki from posting any information about data tethering during the Sprint exclusivity period, and apparently threatening to have the site shut down if it happens: We have been politely cautioned by Palm that any discussion of tethering during the Sprint exclusivity period (and perhaps beyond-we don't know yet) will probably cause Sprint to complain to Palm, and if that happened then Palm would be forced to react against the people running the IRC channel and this wiki. Yeah, that's pretty aggro for a company that needs to court all the developer support it can. We're not sure what'll happen after Sprint's exclusivity runs out, but we can't imagine any other carriers are going to be thrilled about hacked tethering options either, so we'd say Palm's going to keep the pressure on until unlocked GSM webOS devices hit the scene -- and we can almost guarantee that tethering hacks are going to make it into the wild regardless of Palm's actions.Even worse for hackers, Palm's taking an unusually aggressive approach to webOS system updates -- they're mandatory. According to the support docs, webOS updates are automatically downloaded in the background within two days of being available, and they're required to be installed within a week of the download -- after seven days and four install prompts, the phone will give you a ten-minute countdown and then automatically begin installing the update. Sure, we can understand why Palm would want all of its devices to be updated, and we know that a lot of webOS system foundations are in flux while the Mojo SDK is being finalized, but forced updates seem extremely heavy-handed to us -- it's one thing to try and maintain control over a platform, it's another to keep it with an iron fist. Of course, it's probable that we'll see a hack to bypass all of this extremely soon, so maybe it'll all work itself out, but we'd really like to see Palm develop an official policy friendly towards hacking and homebrew and stick to it -- the Pre and webOS have attracted a lot of talent in the past two weeks, and it'd be a shame to lose it.[Via PreThinking; thanks, Justin]Read - Pre Dev Wiki tethering policyRead - Palm webOS updates support doc

  • The secret to Palm Pre dev mode lies in the Konami code

    by 
    Ross Miller
    Ross Miller
    06.10.2009

    We couldn't believe it either, but as it turns out, from the launcher screen of your Pre, simply type in the phrase "upupdowndownleftrightleftrightbastart" -- which if you parse with spacing might be more easily recognizable as the infamous Contra / Konami code (look it up) -- and up comes a hidden app called "Developer Mode Enabler." Looks like it was discovered via the leaked ROM from earlier this evening. It's apparently used to connect a Pre to a machine running Palm's Mojo SDK for webOS, and we have confirmed its legitimacy. In fact, if you want proof and you don't have a Pre of your own, head on after the break for a video we put together, just for you.[Thanks to everyone who sent this in!]

  • Palm's webOS root image leaks out, code enthusiasts reschedule their normal nightly plans

    by 
    Ross Miller
    Ross Miller
    06.09.2009

    Looks like Palm's webOS Reset Doctor, intended for resetting Pre smartphones with a mangled system, has been outed to the public at large along with a very special bonus for hackers and other programming enthusiasts: a complete 195MB root image of webOS itself. Code-inclined individuals on the PreCentral forums have already cracked open the ROM and are getting an unfettered glimpse at the Palm's new platform, which for the layman means it should open the doors for some crazy Pre hacking and possibly hint, by way of unfinished / unused code, of what's to come for the platform -- and if we're really lucky, maybe someone will be able to look at this and move us one step closer to an unlocked Pre that could jump onto Verizon's network. Amusingly, you also get to see all the comments left by the devs in the code, guaranteeing a few good chuckles from others who can relate. Intrepid computer science-ers can hit up the read link to find the appropriate .jar file or just follow along with all the fun in the forum discussion.

  • Palm Pre review

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    06.03.2009

    The Palm Pre. It's not just a phone, it's a myth, an idea, possibly a legacy... and a really, really long time coming. It's almost impossible to believe, but the crew at Engadget has been talking about a Linux-based Palm phone since way back in 2004. Through the now-distant years that followed, we were speculating, pontificating, and wishfully-thinking about a new device from a company that we'd come to expect innovation from. But we waited. And waited. And waited. We waited so long, in fact, that we actually penned a lengthy open letter to Palm, pleading for the company to get back on its game. Only when the picture looked really, truly bleak for the folks in Sunnyvale (you know, like $2 a share bleak) did we actually see a spark of hope -- two sparks, in fact -- called the Pre and webOS. Yes, this is epic stuff. The Pre (and its accompanying operating system) could likely decide the fate of the company largely credited with ushering in the age of the do-everything phone. Since Palm's announcement at CES this year, news surrounding the Pre has been a veritable whirlwind of activity: rumors, half-truths, hate, love, fear-mongering, fanboyism, rampant gadget-lust... and even a little late night celebrity for the pint-sized phone. Finally the time has come to put rubber to road and get into the guts of this thing once and for all. Can the Pre and webOS live up to the hype -- the kind of hype we haven't seen since the launch of the original iPhone -- or do they snap under the pressure? Read on for the full review. Part 1: Hardware, webOS / user interface Part 2: Synergy, phone, media, applications Part 3: Data speeds, backup, battery, Bluetooth, pricing, wrap-up

  • Plethora of Palm Pre interface videos emerge from leaked emulator

    by 
    Ross Miller
    Ross Miller
    05.24.2009

    Palm Pre secrets? That's very quickly becoming a thing of the past. After getting some pretty good shots of webOS last week, the "invisible man" from PalmPreForum.org has uploaded an absolute ton of videos -- fifteen in all, at last count -- showcasing the interface from a leaked emulator given out to early developers (available for Windows, Mac, and Linux, in case you were wondering). Browser, tasks, memos, YouTube, Google Maps, backup, settings, copy and paste -- frankly, we're still wrapping our heads around all of them, and while it's a shame we can't see any multitouch gesture since he's limited to a mouseclick, we're not gonna be choosy here. Clear your afternoon schedule and check out the video playlist we've embedded after the break -- and not to worry, the audio clears up right around the 9th video. Read - YouTube channel Read - PalmPreForum.org [Thanks, Michael]

  • Palm launching smaller Pre-like device later this year says rumor-mill

    by 
    Joshua Topolsky
    Joshua Topolsky
    04.29.2009

    As if we didn't have enough Pre rumors to sort through, along comes TechCrunch and Mikey A. with some hard hitting stuff. According to the TC honcho, one of his "better sources" claims that Palm is "very far along" on a second webOS device which is smaller and slimmer than the Pre and may or may not have a physical keyboard. Apparently, this won't be the iPhone 3G to the first-gen iPhone, rather a device which addresses "a different part of the market." Details are still sketchy, but Arrington claims that the "Mini-Pre" (his name) will land sometime this year -- possibly as soon as the Fall. This is all complete rumor right now, but Palm has previously said that there would be more than one webOS device, so the idea of another model in the oven doesn't exactly come as a surprise. Stay tuned for further updates as we get them.

  • New Pre Classic emulator video shows off 3D gaming prowess

    by 
    Ross Miller
    Ross Miller
    04.19.2009

    The last time we saw the Pre's Classic Palm OS emulator in action, we had a few lingering questions in our mind, chief among them being how well can it game? From the looks of this latest video, released by Motion Apps to answer that very question, pretty well so far. In addition to confirming sound support for the latest build, we also get a brief glimpse of the software handling 3D driver GTS World Racer. Of course, seeing this makes us even more curious about the gaming potential for the native webOS, but alas, we're in the cold there. In the meantime, check out some classic 3D racing in the video after the break.