Palm laying off employees as Pre sales plunge?

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Palm laying off employees as Pre sales plunge?
With sales of the Palm Pre sagging, and with Sprint's attention focused on other handsets at the moment, such as on the upcoming Android powered HTC Hero, the miracle comeback of the cellphone manufacturer appears to be at a crossroad. There is talk at Cool Smartphone of Palm laying off staff. And while it is being attributed to a restructuring, the timing of the pink slips is suspicious. CrunchGear reports that Pre sales topped out at the end of August at 375,000 units and the price dropped from an after rebate contract price of $199 to $79 in 11 weeks. If you charted the trend, it might remind you of the life cycle of a decent feature phone, but for a device that is supposed to herald the coming of age for an amazing new OS, the future is still not certain and there might not be anything in the upcoming release of the Pixi that can change this.

Palm might have one last chance when the Pre's exclusivity with Sprint ends and Verizon gets a crack at selling the handset. The uproar that followed a bogus report that Big Red was not going to support the phone shows you that Verizon customers have not been able to forget their carriers reported rejection of the iPhone when approached by Steve Jobs all those years ago. The wireless operator needs a top of the line multimedia handset (the Storm and the Touch Pro2 are too enterprise oriented) and the Pre could fit that opening perfectly.

Palm Pre Specifications | Review

source: CoolSmartphone via CrunchGear

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16 Comments

1. Domino

Posts: 6; Member since: Feb 02, 2008

Palm made a HORRIBLE decision to make their handset exclusive to Sprint. That will be their downfall. Sprint is not that great a network by any stretch of the imagination. Palm has essentially shot itself in the foot here and now we're watching them bleed out. and honestly, that's not really what killed Palm's Pre... what killed it was the horrendous lag on the interface, poor in-store demonstration experience (the demo models at the Sprint store were too laggy to even use often times) and the fact that their app store is just about empty. Who launches a phone with an empty app store? Palm I guess. It's really sad, because I had really high hopes with Palm. I think right now it's all about Motorola and HTC... Android is the next big wave, I'd jump on board if I were you.

3. BigKippa

Posts: 12; Member since: Sep 14, 2008

Who launches a phone with an empty app store how about Apple for starters or maybe Google and HTC, maybe you have never heard of those guys, they're just small time but when the iphone was launched there were NO APPS same with the G1. And Sprint's network is not that great of a network? Come on kid, they may not be number 1 but check any independent testing of Networks lately and Sprint tops the list in data Speed and connection reliability, and they are always one of the better performers in many test. The phone has only been out for 4 months, they just started approving apps and made it easier to pay for apps within the last week, give em a chance for god's sake!!!

5. jlt8604

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 07, 2009

I'll agree with kippa about giving the pre a shot, but while sprint has excellent speed and reliability, you have to be standing in a little corner of a vacant lot with your hand above your head to get it. Glad you found a good job with sprint but let's try to keep the preaching down a bit. Palm is making a better choice to release to other carriers and having a more widespread customer base.

7. ajac09

Posts: 1482; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

haha that's funny. I think this guy is a fanboi of apple. Sprint has the best network out their. Fast drop calls are no where near as much as AT&T and cheaper then the competition. and now the pre sales are slowing is probably because the HTC hero due out in a week or 2. now if sprint would clean up its customer service it wold be the perfect cell phone company.

10. JeffdaBeat unregistered

See, I think people keep wanting the Pre to have the same draw as the iPhone and that's not going to happen, for a few reason. First off, before the Pre came out, both CEOs of Verizon and AT&T reassured their customers that both networks would have a WebOS device next year simply because the exclusive deal was only 6-months long. So why break a contract for something that will be on your network in a few months? The iPhone has been exclusive for two years now, and folks had a decision of either waiting out their contract or breaking it and switching. Also, it's obvious that Palm would pick Sprint. Sprint has been pushing Palm devices for a few years now...and if I am not mistaken, Verizon and Palm had some problems a few years back. Most folks on Sprint who wanted the Palm Pre have it already. No one is going to rush to switch because it is going to be on other networks after Christmas. When the Pre is offered on other networks, I think Palm will see a whole lot more sell...especially at the iPhone hungry Verizon.

2. DonLouie

Posts: 594; Member since: Dec 22, 2008

This guy is stretching the imagination if he wants to consider Sprint's network anything less than good, if not great, thier past reputation is the only thing holding them back at this point. Palm and Sprint have had the best relationship of all the national carrier also they are the only ones not wanting to tamper with what Palm does. The magical iphone didn't have apps for a year and the G1 took a while to get apps, the App Catalog started w/30 and there have been plenty more since then. If you were using a demo phone in store anytime during the initial launch it had cumbersome demo that was the cause of lag, I believe that's been gotten rid of since. The phone has been out all of 3 months with a steady stream of improvement since, I would suggest it another shot before spreading mistruthes.

13. E.N.

Posts: 2610; Member since: Jan 25, 2009

Like I've said before, the iphone started this whole application store game (and we all better agree on that) so you can't really say that it took a year for the "magical iphone" as you called it, to get an application store. Before the 3G, no phone really had an app store (some people like to consider Get it Now as the first application store but whatever). So you can't say that it took them a year to get an app store. That's not a fair comparison. Apple spends all the money and time inventing their revolutionary app store and you say that it took them a year for the iphone to offer it and the Pre started with an App store. The technology is already created so there was not much difficulty in putting it in their phone. The only reason why the Pre has an app store is probably because of Apple's app store, considering Palm has been around for 10+ years.

14. DonLouie

Posts: 594; Member since: Dec 22, 2008

Palm OS and WinMo have had app for years before the iphone came out but no common place to get them. The magical iphone DID NOT get an app store til the 2nd gen 3G came out a year after the original so I can say it took that long for them to actually launch. I remember when the fruit came out how they were saying apps were coming but they didn't here until the 2nd gen 3G

4. bucky

Posts: 3771; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

let me just start off by saying, i love the pre and even thought of giving up my 32 gb 3gs (lack of memory that high in the pre stopped me). Wasn't it all the pre guys calling all the iphone guys stupid and "fanboyz" for sticking with their iphone? After months of reading that kind of BS over soo many different phone review websites i just had to say...Whats up now?

6. desertmike680

Posts: 42; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

Seriously guys, grow up. I've been an employee with Sprint for 6 and a half years, and the bottom line is, that we have the best network. We are the only carrier ahead of anyone else in regards to 4G, partnerships and technology. Att is still trying to fill its GSM gaps with 850mhz frequency band and still launching 3G? T mobile barely in 3G? Seriously. Again, this is ridiculous. The only close competition is Verizon, which runs off the same CMDA frequency spectrum. I respect Verizon. And stop being so damn trendy and switching to Att for the hippys Iphone. There is no sense in arguing about Palm's Pre and Palm itself. The economy still sucks, companies are trying to find ways of turning themselves around. The Pre has sold well and has not had any known issues except with the battery, but that was quickly corrected. Who cares if the Pre doesnt have all the features that the general consumer wants. What phone does? What car has every damn feature that you want. None of them. So stop crying. Their phones, this is current technology, again, grow up. Were lucky in this day in age to be able to use our multi media cell phones almost everywhere. This message mostly goes to Domino and Bigkappa....figure it out for yourself.

9. JeffdaBeat unregistered

I don't know Mike. Sprint is a great company. I worked for corporate for two years...but some of the stuff you are saying is not true. I work for AT&T Corp now, but I am not a fan boy... Sprint doesn't have the best network. Verizon does. I hated to admit it and I still do, but Verizon acquired Alltel, which had the largest network based on square mileage. Combine Verizon with Alltel and take away Sprint's roaming agreements and Sprint has about the same coverage as T-Mobile. Now, I will say that AT&T's 3G network isn't the best in the world, but Sprint going to WiMAX for 4G when everyone else is going to LTE is just not smart...I am worried Sprint is going to turn into Nextel in that either you are on Sprint's network or you have no service. And you may digg on T-Mobile, but they are not only gaining customers, but still rocking strong on customer service while doing it. The Palm Pre is falling because Sprint has saturated it already. There isn't a draw to the Pre that will make people want to break their contracts with other carriers to go to Sprint. Sprint didn't promote the Palm Pre in the way that Verizon did the Storm or the iPhone. But I agree with you on the fact that people need to grow up. I swear folks get boners trashing carriers as if these networks has done something other than provide them cellular service.

8. stuntz

Posts: 178; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

you guys do realize that Palm is getting rid of its WinMob team... thats the lay offs they're talking about...

11. desertmike680

Posts: 42; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

Yes I totally agree with you in every aspect. Sorry about getting a little heated in the previous comment, I got flooded with liquid damaged units at our service center and customers still blame us for them getting their phones wet....Imagine that!

12. JEEPOFFROADV8

Posts: 36; Member since: Apr 01, 2009

i was with at&t and vzw for 5 years each and also nextel, i hated sprint at the time. but what they are doing now with there customer service and there unlimited plans was to hard to pass up! and i can tell you first hand there network at least in my area destroys at&t!! and since i can roam off vzw. why pay there rates. i prefer the phones off sprint they have a great slection of rugged phones. i really cant say anything bad about there network as it has worked great for me in the year and half that i have had them!! i really never thought i would be with sprint or bragging about there network. but i have not looked back since i joined. not even the iphone has made me switch back!!and for the record there customer service at least for me has been as good if not better then vzw or at&t.

15. behold--me

Posts: 679; Member since: Jun 22, 2009

ok lets review y the pre is failing....... mistake 1: its exclusivity aggreement. mistake2: its exclusivity agreement is on sprint, which sucks. mistake3: the pre really isn't that good. hahah well "sales begin to sag". the glorified pre is not exactly living up to its hype, now is it?

16. DonLouie

Posts: 594; Member since: Dec 22, 2008

Amazon is still reporting the Pre as it's top selling phone

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