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Author Topic: Help me buy my wife a PDA for Christmas  (Read 1346 times)
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warning
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« on: November 19, 2004, 02:13:01 AM »

Mrs. Warning is a nursing instructor and she wants a PDA for Christmas.  She has software she can use to look up medicationss, help with diagnosing and general scheduling/organizing, etc.  The software runs on Palm or on Pocket PC platforms.

Additionally, since were going to have one, I'd like to be able to watch some movies on it (if that's possible), listen to music and maybe run an emulator or two (SNES?  do those exist for handhelds?).

So I need some recommendations.  I'm not particular to either Palm or Pocket PC, although I'm leaning away from Palm and more toward Pocket PC.  I'd like to spend about $300 on this.

Any ideas?   Thanks!
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zinckiwi
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« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2004, 02:49:02 AM »

I'm historically a Palm fanboi, but it's obvious even to me that you want a Dell Axim.
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Devil
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« Reply #2 on: November 19, 2004, 03:06:38 AM »

Tungsten C!
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« Reply #3 on: November 19, 2004, 06:00:16 AM »

I absolutely love my Ipaq 4355 Pocket PC. It does everything and has a nice little keyboard on it too. I whole heartedly recommend it.
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ericb
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« Reply #4 on: November 19, 2004, 12:47:30 PM »

I'm going to second the Dell Axim.  I have one myself and they are great (also have a color prism, 2 palms and a casio pocket pc).  You will not get another pocket pc with the screen, features, and available options like bluetooth, wireless, etc for anywhere close to the money the Dell sells for.  The only thing is try to get the 4" VGA screen.  Not only do you get an extra .5" but double the resolution.  Every PDA coming out is going VGA and applications coming out are going to be written with that in mind.  It's nice now but will probably be mandatory by next christmas.
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HankRaptor
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« Reply #5 on: November 19, 2004, 02:08:47 PM »

I have OWNED both. The Palm and the Pocket Pc.

There is NO COMPARISON.

Pocket Pc, is leaps and bounds superior if you are a geek. Palm may be easier for some one less technologically proficient.
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warning
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« Reply #6 on: November 19, 2004, 03:03:41 PM »

Quote from: "ericb"
I'm going to second the Dell Axim.  I have one myself and they are great (also have a color prism, 2 palms and a casio pocket pc).  You will not get another pocket pc with the screen, features, and available options like bluetooth, wireless, etc for anywhere close to the money the Dell sells for.  The only thing is try to get the 4" VGA screen.  Not only do you get an extra .5" but double the resolution.  Every PDA coming out is going VGA and applications coming out are going to be written with that in mind.  It's nice now but will probably be mandatory by next christmas.

Those sure do look sweet.  Two questions:
1) What is the difference between a VGA and a QVGA screen?  The VGA is 3.7" and the QVGA is 3.5".
2) They say they come with 64 mb SDRAM so I assume that is for storage. But there are also models that come with 128MB Intel StrataFlash®  ROM.  What is this?  Is it extra flash-based storage?  If so, how is it different from the 64 mb SDRAM?  Would I need to buy an extra memory card for this?
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Temjin
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« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2004, 09:07:34 PM »

The VGA screens will allow you to view web pages at 640x480.  With QVGA, web browsing is a truely horrible experience.  

If you want to view movies and listen to music, you'll definitely need a Compact Flash II or SD memory card.  

To get an adequate emulation experience, you'll need a keyboard for the PDA.  Trying to play old SNES games with the standard PDA controls is not adequate.  

I have a Toshiba E800, and I must admit I'm disappointed with the whole PDA scene.  They're expensive, underpowered, and undersupported.  Once the novelty wore off, I only use mine to check email and for mandatory school purposes.
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Scott
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« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2004, 09:50:38 PM »

Quote
She has software she can use to look up medicationss, help with diagnosing and general scheduling/organizing, etc. The software runs on Palm or on Pocket PC platforms.

I'm not sure how far the PocketPC community has moved towards supporting medical apps, but I know there is an incredible amount of Palm apps and databases.  It probably may even be a slam dunk in this regard.

I've used both, and have an Axim X3 now.  My dream PDA is this:
http://www.palmone.com/us/products/smartphones/treo650/

Having a small, full operational PDA and phone is the killer app.  Friends have this (acutally older models), and it simply blows other PDAs out of the water.
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« Reply #9 on: November 21, 2004, 05:43:19 PM »

The Dell Axim is a great PPC. The higher models  can even emulate Playstation games. The only thing I'm concerned with though is the battery. I've heard it's pretty bad.

As for Palm, personally I think the best choice is the Tapwave Zodiac. The 32 meg ram model is in your price range, and it's not only the best Palm, but it's probably the best PDA for games. It has an analog joystick, shoulder buttons, and 4 buttons on the right side. Basically think ofa SNES controller made into a pda, with an analog joystick. And with a 3d accelerator, it can do visuals that no other Palm can do. The graphics are equal with the Playstation, if not a bit superior. However it's also a top-notch PDA. And the battery life is fantastic. It also had a wide landscape screen, perfect for watching letterbox movies. The CPU speed isn't fast enough to run playstation ganmes though.


www.tapwave.com


The other Palm is the Tunsten III, which is another good choice. However, the screen is smaller than I'd like, and I heard the battery life isn't as good. It is a bit faster than the Zodiac though, and within the same price range. Really though you're not going to find many programs that need the CPU speed the the Tungsten III can dish out, at least until they make a Playstation emulator for the Palm smile
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Scott
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« Reply #10 on: November 22, 2004, 01:49:50 AM »

Forgot to add this to my post, but a PDA is only good when you have it with you.  I always carry my cell phone, but not my PDA nearly as much.  I really wish they were one in the same like the Treo.  It may not be as sexy as one of the Windows CE devices (like the Axim), but since you always carry it with you, it is incredibly more useful.  And it is much easier to carry one small device then two small devices.
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« Reply #11 on: November 22, 2004, 04:42:05 AM »

Well, I've owned a Tungsten T|3 now ever since launch day, and I love it.

It'll play lots of games (although emulating the SNES is beyond its power), does lots of things, and as far as medical aps go, I found that this free app at:
http://www2.epocrates.com/index.html
was a great little program to keep on me (I work as a pharmacy tech at my local grocery chain).

Now, after the total blunder of the Tungsten T|5 (it's a freaking E2, NOT a T5!), I've been wondering if I should upgrade to the latest Dell Axim model, as it's been getting some great reviews around the web. The only issue is that I'd lose all the titles I have for my Palm, as they aren't cross-compatible.

Maybe I'll get the Treo 650 instead...

The battery power (or lack thereof) is an issue though. Under heavy use (running the .mp3 player in the background constantly), expect 3 hours, tops, of battery life. If you're not doing too much with it, it'll last longer than that, but at best, you're looking at about 4-5 hours of continous use between recharges.
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