D’oh. SFR, a wireless carrier in France, briefly posted a product page for the Palm Pre 2. The page is gone now, but we all know what goes up on the Internet never really comes down. Pre Central has the details preserved.
As the name suggests, the Palm Pre 2 doesn’t deviate much from the original. Instead, it modernizes the hardware — there’s a 1 GHz processor, 512 MB of RAM and an unspecified bump in battery life — and refines the design, with a flatter screen and what looks like a matted finish to reduce cracks in the plastic. And of course, WebOS 2.0 will be on board. Think of it as the Droid 2 to Motorola’s original Droid.
It’s tempting to look at the leaked Palm Pre 2 evidence and wonder what HP and Palm are thinking. When HP announced its plan to acquire Palm, it seemed giddy about getting WebOS, but didn’t mention the Pre at all. All signs pointed to some kind of smartphone reboot, not a rehash of the same hardware models that bombed commercially.
But updating the Palm Pre to reach parity with other smartphones doesn’t preclude HP and Palm from being more ambitious at the same time. A slab-like phone codenamed “Mansion” is reportedly in the works, and we know nothing about HP and Palm’s strategies for pricing, marketing and wireless carrier deals.
Certainly, HP is in a deep hole with Palm phones. The App Catalog is tiny and brand awareness is lousy. Maybe the solution lies in releasing a lot of solid smartphones to a lot of carriers, and the Pre 2 is just the beginning. We’ll see.