French carrier SFR advertised a Palm Pre 2 on its Website, raising speculation that the Pre 2 is the webOS-running device HP has slated for early 2011.
Hewlett-Packard's first WebOS-running smartphone looks to be a Palm Pre 2.
SFR, the second-largest mobile carrier in France, touted the device
on its Website Oct. 12, before apparently noting its faux pas and
pulling the page-though not before PreCentral.net grabbed a screenshot.
The Palm Pre 2, looking quite a bit like the original Pre, is said
to feature a 1GHz processor, 512MB of RAM, a flatter screen-PreCentral
guesses that means glass-a more intuitive user interface, a faster boot
time, an "overlayed" view of related applications, and a redesign of
the Palm App Catalog. It will also run webOS 2.0, which will features
The QWERTY keypad design also appears less recessed, and a
PreCentral reader with sharp eyes points out that the Palm Pre's USB
door has been replaced with an exposed microUSB port. SFR offered no
details on pricing or a release date.
Since HP's announced $1.2 billion acquisition of Palm in April, the
PC manufacturer has made no secret of its plans to introduce numerous
mobile form factors running a version of the Palm-created operating
system, webOS. Both a tablet PC and smartphones are reported to be are
among the planned devices. Eric Cador, senior vice president in HP's
PSG (Personal Systems Group), recently offered a hint at the expected
timeframe for the latter, saying HP will begin introducing smartphones in early 2011,
Reuters reported Oct. 6.
During Palm's Aug. 19 earnings call, Todd Bradley, executive vice
president of PSG, also said a webOS-based device would be coming at the
turn of the calendar-though at the time, many expected he was referring
to HP's tablet PC, a version of which is also expected to run
Microsoft's Windows 7.
"You'll see us with a Microsoft product out in the near future and a webOS-based product in early 2011," Bradley said during the call.
On Oct. 11, Microsoft released its Windows Phone 7 platform on several smartphones from Taiwan-based phone-maker HTC,
as well as Dell, LG Electronics and Samsung. Microsoft imposed several hardware requirements on its manufacturing partners, including a "pane of glass" form factor.
Palm fans literate in French may want to give the SFR screenshot
another read. PreCentral, working to glean any additional details,
reports that in the unedited image name, SFR also gives away the Pre
2's internal codename: Roadrunner. Which is hopefully the most telling
detail of all.