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MOBILE DEVICES

Tungsten E Review: Easy, Entry-level, Elegant
By: Katharine Miller
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    2004-02-20

    Table of Contents:
  • Tungsten E Review: Easy, Entry-level, Elegant
  • Features and Specifications
  • What We Didn't Like, What We Did
  • Who Needs It?

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    Tungsten E Review: Easy, Entry-level, Elegant


    (Page 1 of 4 )

    Technology isnít just for geeks anymore. A growing number of average consumers are catching gadget fever and picking up everything from PDAs to digital cameras to WiFi capable cell phones. But even though consumer enthusiasm is increasing, most potential users arenít quite tech-savvy enough to handle (or appreciate) some of the more sophisticated devices. Fortunately, manufacturers are realizing this and have started to meet the need for user-friendly devices. Enter Tungsten E.


    At first, the Tungsten E looks sleek, shiny and sophisticated. You wouldnít guess that beneath the chrome finish lays plastic and the potential to change the way you keep track of your personal or professional information. 

    Tungsten E is part of Palmís Tungsten line for corporate-minded individuals. This model, pricing in at just under $200, is designed to be an entry-level device for the technology-impaired or people who need the technology and just donít have the time to learn complicated new systems.

    Tungsten E - FrontTungsten E - Back
    Images courtesy of PalmOne.com

    When the E model was released in October 2003, it was touted as one of the best new PDAs in its price range. With high-quality bundled software, a 126 MHz TI OMAP311 ARM processor, and a crisp 320 x 320 color screen, the Tungsten E may be better than your first computer. This isnít the model that hardcore PDA users will rave over, but average users will be able to appreciate the features and functions.

    Tools and devices for beginners and entry-level users typically tend to be stripped down versions of their regular counterparts. And if you look at the price, you might expect this to be a low-quality monochrome bubblegum machine type of PDA. However, the E might just dash your negative expectations. This device manages to succeed as an easily navigable device without dumbing-down the applications or the user. And it does so in full color and with 32 MB of RAM, which is quadruple the amount of RAM in most other PDA models in the same price bracket.

    Palm makes inputting information easy and painless for new and loyal users. Rather than implement complicated handwriting recognition software, the Palm OS uses a pre-determined set of stylus strokes akin to the normal writing style we were taught in elementary school. The latest version of Graffiti is said to be much improved over earlier versions, but Graffiti can still be temperamental. Easily frustrated or busy users who just want to make a quick note without puzzling over strokes can pull up the on-screen keyboard and peck information in with the stylus.

    Personal users looking for a little bit of fun can find hundreds of games and time-wasters on PDA freeware or shareware sites. With the purchase of a SD card, users can listen to MP3s in the RealPlayer through a tiny speaker on the back of the E.

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