HP Pre 3 Hands-on

HP Pre 3 Hands-on

Back in the day, the original Palm Pre was an iconic device despite its delayed launch and Palm's funding problems. WebOS undeniably has one of the most original concepts for a platform with the card-based webOS, but the Pre seemed to be always plagued with problems and the most important one of them is the lack of massive developer support as seen on iOS or Android. The HP Pre 3 marked an important threshold – the end of the Palm era and the transition to HP for webOS. We were eager to take our hands on the upcoming Pre 3 to see if it has the potential to build on the legacy of Palm, so read on.

The HP Pre 3 brings initial relief – the screen is finally bigger than on previous Pre handsets at 3.58” with a WVGA resolution (480 x 800 pixels). Actually, the whole device is notably bigger. But at the same time, 3.6 inches is starting to be considered a bit small in the high-end segment and with its Summer release date the Pre 3 might remain the only flagship handset with such a small screen size. Nevertheless, it is a big improvement and webOS looks even better on the HP Pre 3. And it is not only the looks – the whole experience feels richer. The handset is compatible with the Palm TouchStone wireless charging dock as well.

Of course, this handset is all about the QWERTY keyboard – the bigger size allows for more space between buttons, which contributes to a faster and almost error-free typing. The universal “Just type” search on webOS will let you fully appreciate the presence of a physical keyboard.

But most importantly, we wanted to see smooth transitions and speed on the next Pre. And we have to say that the performance doesn't disappoint – with a mind-blowing 1.4GHz Qualcomm single-core Snapdragon CPU and 512MB of RAM, webOS flies on the Pre 3. The handset also comes with a 5-megapixel shooter with 720p HD video capturing capabilities on the back and a front-facing VGA camera. Connectivity is well covered with support for Wi-Fi b/g/n, as well as Wi-Fi router functionality for up to five devices using HP mobile hotspot. The device's HSDPA bands allow for downloads of up to 7.2 Mbps.

In the software department we will see webOS 2.2. And it is the first Pre with Touch-to-share, which allows you to instantly send content such as URLs to other compatible devices like the HP TouchPad. A well rounded package, isn't it? Finally, the Pre seems to stand a chance among the other smartphone heavyweights. If only it could come out earlier!

Related phones

  • Display 3.6" 480 x 800 pixels
  • Camera 5 MP / 0.3 MP VGA front
  • Storage 8 GB
  • Battery 1230 mAh
Pre3 GSM
  • Display 3.6" 480 x 800 pixels
  • Camera 5 MP / 0.3 MP VGA front
  • Storage 8 GB
  • Battery 1230 mAh



1. rayjones09

Posts: 149; Member since: Dec 16, 2010

I LIKE THIS!!! This seems to be a really good phone

2. JeffdaBeat unregistered

It's so funny, I remember when I was excited when my computer was upgraded to 800Mhz...now we have 1GHz processors in cellphones...

3. tacoslaad

Posts: 8; Member since: Dec 15, 2010

wow. The last pre was garbage, HP doesnt mess around, when they upgrade they go all out.

4. RudestBuddhist

Posts: 2; Member since: Feb 07, 2011

I got a demo of the Palm Pre when it came out. I thought the OS was pretty damn awesome, but the hardware was just garbage. Can't wait to see what they do with the new phones. Their TouchPad also looks pretty cool!

5. Landmarkcm

Posts: 507; Member since: Aug 11, 2009

Dont have time to wait for them. Too many broken promises already moved onto Windowsphone7 & love it. Hp is gonna have a hard time trying to regain what little market share they have left..

13. jjbinkes unregistered

I love wp7, but this looks better imho.

6. Flip7

Posts: 31; Member since: Nov 27, 2009

I was always a fan of webos but they didn't keep up with the competition n the evo just was amazing...now that they have HP backing them up there's future there n potential so I don't knw if the evo2 will ever come but will see cuz my wife already said she's leaving her epic for the pre3

7. webOSdev2.0

Posts: 31; Member since: Jan 17, 2011

This is my next phone no question about it, on a side note don't mean to be rude but why waste your time coming to this post just to say you have a windows phone no one here cares. We all are webos fanboys people like you who come to start mess is what ruins blogs for everyone else. It's good that you like Winmo but next time just remember NO ONE CARES!

8. PRE3333 unregistered

Please Release this SOOOONNNN on Sprint or Vzw!!! I Need this phone lol

9. some1 unregistered

all i want is Web OS on my Evo

10. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

Android floundered for over a year between its initial release with the G1 and its explosion with the Droid. I don't think anyone should count WebOS out. It may never have the huge following of Android & iOS, but it definitely has its backers. And the Pre3 finally has the hardware to really compete on specs. I was looking forward to the next set of Droids this summer, but the Pre3 is now my top choice.

11. boat48

Posts: 1; Member since: Feb 17, 2011

I'm so excited about the pre3 and the touchpad. HP has a great start to want I hope is a whole stable of WebOs products. IMO, WebOS is the easiest mobile OS to use and very intuitive. ...but I have to wait until June before taking this pony for a ride.

12. depeche

Posts: 63; Member since: Feb 04, 2011

The Pre 3 will be a great flagship phone for HP, with a lot of hardware upgrades nice 3.6", 24 bit display, larger keyboard, noise canceling, auto-focus camera (hopefully it does not kill the camera, really liked the original fast action camera) overall hardware seems to have improved. They have had a lot of time to work on the software hopefully they have added stronger finishing touches to the webOS so that it may compete... Sprint has a strong PALM (webOS) fan base; which they seemed to have missed on the Palm Pre Plus and the Palm Pre 2. Maybe they will get to share the Pre 3 action?

14. Ex PRE user... unregistered

I went thru 4 different Palm Pre's on Sprint.... eventually I gave up and switched over to Android (currently have the Evo and love it). The hardware of the Palm Pre was such a disappointment / let-down, that I couldn't count on it to work. BUT I was very very impressed with the WebOS. If it gets support from developers, and multiple phones (not just the Pre, but a whole line of phones, like Android & Windows)... then it could be very successful. I'm really looking forward to playing with the HP Tablet with the WebOS. Nice job HP for keeping this alive and pushing forward with it. You may have a re-convert if things go well!

15. oldgreyfox unregistered

Was introduced to 'smartphones' way back via a succesion of Palm's..been on BlackBerry's since then but would jump on this phone in a flash. Just hope it's slated for an Aussie release..

16. pavel unregistered

Does anyone know on what carrier this will come out?

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