The Palm Pre, with a launch date of June 6, 2009 in the U.S. and available through Sprint Nextel, is a smartphone that is seen as an alternative to the iPhone 3G.

According to Wired magazine, when the Palm Pre was first announced in January at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, it offered features like universal search that scans contacts on the phone and the web, copy-and-paste and multi-tasking that were not available on the iPhone 3G. But in March Apple closed the gap significantly. The iPhone 3.0 update to be released in the summer of 2009 is expected to bring many of the Palm Pre’s features to the iPhone.

The Associated Press offered a glowing review of the Palm Pre, stating that Pre had better software capabilities ("a phone operating system that is more powerful, elegant and user-friendly") than the iPhone. The article mentions webOS features like multitasking, seeing notification regardless of which application you're using, and aggregating contacts from various sources including Google, MS Exchange and Facebook.

Another interesting feature of the Palm Pre when it launched was that when you connect it to a Mac or Windows PC, the computer thought that the Pre is an iPod. So the iTunes software could be used to transfer music libraries easily to the Pre. But on July 15 2009, Apple released an update for iTunes that broke this interoperability. Since Apple puts restrictions on the video and certain songs sold via the iTunes store, they cannot be played on the Pre.

Comparison chart

Apple iPhone 3G versus Palm Pre comparison chart
Edit this comparison chartApple iPhone 3GPalm Pre
  • current rating is 3.35/5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(106 ratings)
  • current rating is 3.03/5
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
(138 ratings)
Apple iPhone 3GPalm Pre
Screen Resolution 320 x 480 pixels 320 x 480 pixels
FM Radio No No
Operating System (proprietary) iPhone / based on OS X core (proprietary) webOS
Headphone Jack (3.5mm) Yes Yes
Weight 4.7 oz (133 g) 4.76 oz (135 g)
Music Player Supported Formats: AAC, Protected AAC, MP3, Audible, Apple Lossless, AIFF, WAV iPod Supported Formats: MP3, AAC, AAC+, WAV
Screen size 3.5" diagonal 3.1" diagonal
Wireless Carrier AT&T Sprint
Dimensions 4.52" x 2.44" x 0.49" (115 x 62 x 12.4 mm) 3.9" x 2.3" x 0.67" (99 x 58 x 17 mm)
Picture messaging Yes No
Bluetooth Supported Profiles: HSP, HFP 1.5, PBA version 2.0 + EDR Supported Profiles: HSP 1.1, HFP 1.5, PBA, A2DP, AVRC, PAN version 2.1+EDR
Games Yes Yes
Calendar Yes Yes
Hard Drive No No
E-mail client Protocols Supported: POP, IMAP, Exchange built-in attachment viewer (Microsoft Office, PDF) Protocols Supported: Exchange Direct Push, POP3, IMAP
Voice recorder No No
To-Do List No Yes
Memory card slot No No
SyncML No No
Text messaging (SMS) 2-Way: Yes threaded 2-Way: Yes
Stereo Speakers No No
Flashlight No No
Keyboard No Layout: QWERTY
Headset Jack (2.5 mm) No No
MMS No Yes
CPU Samsung 32-bit RISC ARM11 @ 620 MHz TI OMAP 3430
Ruggedized No No
Side buttons volume keys, ringer switch on left / sleep key on top volume
Wi-Fi support Version(s): 802.11 b/g Version(s): 802.11 b, g supports WPA, WPA2, 802.1X
Push-To-Talk No No
Screen Colors 16.7 million (24-bit) 16.7 million (24-bit)
GPS A-GPS supports LBS, photo geo-tagging A-GPS
Streaming Video Protocol: H.264 / MPEG-4 (MOV, MP4, M4V, 3GPP) via Safari web browser / plus dedicated YouTube client Protocol: RTSP
Video Capture No No
Java support No No
Browser Safari supports landscape mode, multi-touch zoom and pan, and multiple windows. WebKit-based
Networks GSM 850 / GSM 900 / GSM 1800 / GSM 1900 WCDMA 850 / WCDMA 1900 / WCDMA 2100 CDMA 850 / CDMA 1900
Screen Type LCD (Color TFT/TFD) LCD (Color TFT/TFD)
Infrared No No
Picture ID Yes Yes
PictBridge No No
Languages supported English, French, German, Japanese, Dutch, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish, Korean, Chinese, Russian, Polish English, Spanish
Auto-complete suggestions for text Yes No
Supports enlarging text No No
Speakerphone Yes Yes
Physical design Bar Internal Antenna Slide-out; QWERTY keyboard; Internal Antenna
Built-in memory 16 GB (internal memory available to user for storage) also available in 8 GB model 8 GB (internal memory available to user for storage)
Ringer Profiles No No
Ringer ID Yes Yes
Digital TTY/TDD Yes Yes
Camera Resolution: 2+ megapixel supports geo-tagging Resolution: 3+ megapixel LED flash
External Display No No
Voice dialing No No
Alarm Yes Yes
Vibrate mode Yes Yes
USB Version: 2.0 supports charging Version: 2.0 High Speed built-in microUSB connector / supports mass storage mode
Live TV No No
Polyphonic Ringtones No Yes
Calculator Yes Yes
Data network Technology: HSDPA 3.6 Technology: 1xEV-DO rA
Touch Screen Primary input method: Finger multi-touch Primary input method: Finger capacitive

Shop For


Share this comparison:

If you read this far, you should follow us:

"Apple iPhone 3G vs Palm Pre." Diffen LLC, n.d. Web. 6 Dec 2018. < >