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Fans of Palm's webOS operating system will soon have another option beyond the Pre, as the company said the Pixi smartphone will go on sale Nov. 15 for about $100 with a new two-year contract for Sprint Nextel.
At just .43-inches thick, the Pixi is sleeker and thinner than the Palm Pre, iPhone 3GS, and even the BlackBerry Bold 9700. The handset also has a capacitive touchscreen and a full QWERTY keyboard on its face. Although it is generally considered to be a notch below the Pre, the Pixi is still capable of multitasking, mobile e-mailing, and Web browsing.
The device will be somewhat enterprise-friendly for businesses with a Microsoft Exchange server because it comes with Microsoft ActiveSync. The OS may also help mobile professionals organize their contacts because it combines information from various sources such as Outlook, Facebook, and LinkedIn into a single, finger-friendly interface. Users will also be able to receive push e-mail from Web-based providers such as Gmail and Yahoo Mail. New applications may be downloaded from Palm's App Catalog.
Some users may be disappointed that the Pixi lacks Wi-Fi, but the handset can use Sprint's EV-DO 3G network for surfing the Web and downloading apps. The handset also packs Bluetooth, GPS, 8 GB of internal memory, multimedia capabilities, and a 2-megapixel camera.
It is unclear how successful the Pixi will be, as the higher-end Pre can be had on the same network for only $50 more. The Pixi will likely sell more units once its exclusivity period ends and it is offered on multiple cellular operators as the Centro smartphone was.
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