The Treo 650 is a SmartPhone from Sprint PCS and palmOne. After 15 years of cellular service from Verizon, I moved to Sprint PCS just to get the Treo 650. I was surprised to find Sprint PCS is a much more robust and user-friendly cellular service provider than Verizon. The Sprint network, at least in New York City and northern New Jersey, is excellent and strong and I can finally use my cellphone in my basement.

Verizon was dead in my basement. Sprint PCS, despite rambling urban myths that suggest otherwise, can penetrate into buildings just fine. The power of the Treo 650 is in its ability to wireless connect to the internet via Sprint PCS Vision. I no longer need to lug around a huge computer bag to carry my books and laptop.

I can now carry a smaller, lighter, bag because everything I need during the day can be found in my Treo 650 and not on my laptop. I can wirelessly check and send SSL IMAP email and read and reply and create messages. I can read and write DOC files and PDFs. I can do wireless web browsing research on the internet. I can wirelessly update my magazine and newspaper subscriptions automatically throughout the day. I can wirelessly do live chat via Yahoo! or MSN or other server-based chat services. I can wirelessly send and receive SMS text messaging.

I can wirelessly reserve and track airline travel via direct connection to the OAG Flight-Finder database. I can wirelessly listen to live streamed music from the internet. I can wirelessly send and share images and movies captured with the Treo 650’s built-in camera. The beauty of the Treo 650 is that it is not a Wi-Fi device with limited connections. The Treo 650 uses the nationwide Sprint PCS Vision network for connectivity, so wherever you can use your Sprint cellular phone you can use the Treo 650’s wireless capabilities mentioned here. Here are the programs and accessories I have set up on my Treo 650:

Vaja Case – Made specifically for the Treo to protect it from bumps and and each case is unique, hand-dyed and hand-stitched.

Lexar – 1gig SD Disk – Most of my programs and data run from here.

HandmarkExpress – Wirelessly update news, scores, weather, movies and stocks.

Pocket Tunes Deluxe – Wirelessly listen to live music streams or OGG Vorbis, WMA, WAV or MPG files stored on the SD card.

VeriChat – Live, fast, real-time, wireless chat via Yahoo! or MSN or other chat services.

WorldMate Pro – Updated wireless weather and currency exchange rates and OAG updates.

Mergic – Wireless VPN access.

SnapperMail – Wireless POP3 or SSL IMAP4 support to control all aspects of my seven mail accounts.

DateBook 5 – The everlasting champ of calendar software.

PocketMirror Pro XT – Chapura makes it simple to synch your Outlook 2003 data.

Documents to Go – The latest version now includes PDF support.

MegaClock – Timers, Countdowns, fun Skins and aesthetic Watch faces make this a joy to use for tracking projects.

In addition to its incredible data and internet capabilities, the Treo 650 is also a great cellular phone. I use a Motorola HS850 Bluetooth headset with the phone. The built-in speakerphone is extremely easy to use. The Treo 650’s screen is bright, crisp and beautiful. The Treo 650 sets the new industry standard for excellence in SmartPhones.

10 Comments

  1. That’s interesting. While I was in the Houston, Chicago, and D.C. areas my Sprint service was subpar for five years. I am now very pleased with Verizon.
    I imagine the area and perhaps the phone matter quite a bit.

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  2. Hi Bob —
    Hey, I am with you on the Verizon vs. Sprint thing. I was a happy Verizon customer for many years. I chose SprintPCS, as I say in the review above, because they were the only carrier at the time that had the Treo 650.
    Lots of people really despise Sprint. I was with Verizon when they were NYNEX and then Bell Atlantic. They were always superior in dense city populations.
    In big cities on the East Coast, however, especially in NYC and the surrounding area, SprintPCS is just as good or better lately than Verizon. Odd, eh?
    Oh, and hey, I loved your post from your blog:
    http://bobvis.blogspot.com/2004/10/bobs-making-trouble-already.html
    I laughed and laughed because I have been there with you and experienced that!
    You described Pinheadery at its best and you handled it with aplomb when contempt and fury were the more likely reasons of being. 🙂

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  3. Have you tried T-Mobile’s Sidekick? Is it like that? I want to switch from Sidekick but looking for a device which does have a good sized keyboard (not like a Blackberry where you can hit any of 8 different letters each time you hit a key).

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  4. Hi Daniel —
    I have tried the original Sidekick and the Sidekick II and while I know a lot of people love their Sidekick neither were powerful enough to meet my needs.
    The Sidekick system is closed for dynamically updating your calendar and addresses via direct sync with your computer and, as a phone, it leaves a lot to be desired.
    I will soon post a review here of a couple of neat programs you can use to retrieve information on the Treo 650 and those programs alone make the 650 a killer piece of hardware for me.
    The Blackberry never excited me — the sharp angles don’t cut well in my hands. The keyboard on the Treo 650 is excellent.
    You can find an active community at Treo Central where a bunch of good people can compare answers with you. The great thing about Treo Central is there are haters there as well as 650 lovers so you’ll get a good balance of feedback:
    http://discussion.treocentral.com/forumdisplay.php?f=70
    If you have any more direct questions for me, I’m happy to answer, so let ’em ring!

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