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80%

Palm Treo Pro Windows Mobile smartphone

Unusual... but far from unusable

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

With all that potential storage it's a shame that media playback is restricted to the capabilities of the Windows' own media player. Thank heavens for CorePlayer downloads then.

The Pro's two-megapixel camera is a very basic device with no autofocus and no flash - it's acceptable for taking snaps for your contacts book but not a whole lot else. Video capture is limited to 320 x 240 at 30f/s. Palm hasn't given the Pro a forward facing video camera though in the real world this is hardly a major oversight. Does anyone ever actually make 3G video calls?

Palm Treo Pro

Volume and camera keys on one side...

Signal and call quality proved to be well up to snuff during our time with the Pro, while the Wi-Fi radio proved far more capable of finding and holding a signal than that on the Samsung Omnia we tested recently.

Palm claims a maximum of five hours' talk time and 250 on stand-by from the 1500mAh battery. Certainly, the combination of a slightly larger-than-average battery and slightly smaller-than-usual screen means that the Pro needs to be charged less often than the majority of the Windows-driven smartphones we've tested of late. Two days between charges was never a problem unless we really went to town on the Wi-Fi and the GPS receiver.

Incidentally, the Treo comes with a novel little mains charger that uses the supplied USB cable, meaning one less lead to get tangled up when you're out and about. The box and sundry packaging is made from entirely re-cycled material, Earth fans.

Palm Treo Pro

...and a tricky-to-press Wi-Fi key on the other

At the time of writing, the Treo Pro has yet to appear on contract from any of the usual suspects though you can buy it direct from Palm, SIM-free, for a very respectable £399.

Verdict

Some will criticise the Treo Pro for being neither fish nor fowl, but the option of being able to execute many of the device's functions using either the touchscreen or the keyboard is not without attraction. On balance, it's a smart, well-built, well-featured phone that is likely to serve its owners well.

The essential guide to IT transformation

80%

Palm Treo Pro Windows Mobile smartphone

An unusual but far from unusable Windows Mobile device that's likely to appeal to the business rather than domestic user. Small fingers an advantage.
Price: Contract: TBC. PAYG: TBC. Unlocked: £399 RRP

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