Palm owners complain about defects, cheap construction, Oreos - Macenstein

Palm owners complain about defects, cheap construction, Oreos

Sure, the iPhone 3GS may be running hot enough to allegedly nearly melt the white models, but at least its keyboard doesn’t squeak! Ahhh, the joys of a touchscreen…

According to ABC News, owners of the “iPhone killing” Palm Pre (which sold 400,000 units last month, compared to the 1 million iPhone 3GS’ Apple sold its first weekend) are experiencing some hardware glitches, forcing some users to give up completely on the device after their 3rd returns.

“Yeah I will be exchanging mine as well,” writes one Palm owner on the site jkOnTheRun. “It is squeaky when i type on it, and I have found that if you squeeze the pre in a weird way OR slide the screen down a tad to hard my unit just turns off in a blink of an eye…..”

Across the web on Palm Pre enthusiast sites, more and more reports of build defects are surfacing, including an odd type of separation being described as “Oreo Twisting”. Here’s one of many complaints about the Pre’s build quality on the PreCentral forums:

“I’m on my THIRD pre (yellow box). Over the last two weeks, I’ve noticed an increasing amount of play with the screen. I’ve also noticed that on the left side of the device the two sections are separated enough that i can almost see the innards. When I push them together, you can hear squeaking. On top of that, the device came with a loose power button that doesn’t click nearly as firmly as that of other devices.”

… and another…

“On average its 4 slides to get it to turn off. I love getting an email, opening the slider, and seeing the screen go black. Then I have to wait 90 seconds for it to start up (longest OS start-up I have ever seen. Vista boots faster).

… and another…

“I already exchanged my first one due to a faulty screen, and will likely also exchange my current one because of a wobbly/loose slider. Hopefully third time’s a charm.”

… and my favorite…

“Twice today mine shutoff when I opened the slider. Got a piece of paper and tightened up the battery connection. So far so good. The gap on the left side of my Pre appears to be getting wider and wider. Also, starting to get a wiggle in it. Can’t see how this REV A device is going to make through the first year.”

Tightened the battery connection with a piece of paper? The Pre sounds rock solid. Of course, we iPhone users aren’t even allowed to get close enough to the battery to stick paper in it, so I guess in that respect the Pre has us beat.

Now, in the interest of faux fair journalism, I should remind everyone that when the first generation iPhone launched many people experienced “stuck pixels” on the device’s touch screen, and I in fact returned an iPhone for that reason. But while it’s perfectly reasonable to expect that a 1st gen product might have a couple warts, two years later that replaced iPhone is as rock-solid as it was the day I unboxed it – not an Oreo Twist in sight. Thank god for no moving parts.

Mmmm… Oreos…

Thanks to faithful Macenstein reader Johnny for the tip!

18 Responses to “Palm owners complain about defects, cheap construction, Oreos”
  1. Goes both ways says:

    The latest iPhone isn’t exactly great either.. There are reports of overheating turning white iPhones brown. Also reports of non-uniform/washed out colors on the screen and finally there’s all that cracking of the the plastic case

  2. dave says:

    And now we know why the Pre’s sales are so high. Replacements!

  3. iShervin says:

    apple needs to make more iphones now as 400 000 users will be getting iphone

  4. Killer's Dad says:

    Gee, my June 30, 2007 iPhone is doing just fine. It’s been on since 8 this morning, handling calls, listening to the iPod during my 1 hour walk and still has 2/3-3/4 battery remaining for the gym and dinner.

    No scratches, cracking, Oreo-Twisting, not even a replacement battery…

  5. slappy says:

    Those numbers are all guesses from some analyst. Where are the real numbers for the weekend sales and to date from Palm or Sprint? If they were selling like crazy, you would think these guys would proudly announce it. Hello? Bueller? Bueller?

  6. Ed A says:

    Some Pre users on their third replacement? Sounds like the Pre problems are more widespread than the iPhone 3G problems were. I’ve heard of the 3G case cracks, but I don’t personally know anybody who actually had the problem.

  7. Chloë Moíra Smith says:

    That’s why it is called a “Pre,” it’s a PREview of of phone coming to a town near you soon!

  8. James says:

    I think the 3G case crack is an urban legend. I’ve dropped mine more times than I’d like, most recently on the tile floor of my kitchen, and it has nary a scratch on it. I do have a film on it though, both front and back, maybe it has served as a shock absorber or something, I dunno. Needless to say, it’s still rock solid and I’ve never had a problem with it.

    Aside from the drool factor, my main motivation for getting an iPhone was how seamlessly it works with my Mac, and in that, probably better and more reliably than ANY phone does on a Windows machine-no other phone can touch it in that regard, or probably ever will.

    These issues with the Pre are bound to be worked out at some point. Right? Right?

  9. Dave-O says:

    When my brother worked at Motorola, he told me a story about the design guys proposing a thinner design that would have been prone to scratches. “It’s not like people are going to put them in their pockets with their keys, right?” Seriously, someone had to point out that their phones are supposed to go out into the world.

    The one report of the discolored iPhone is clearly a defective unit (and stuck pixels on LCDs is not unique to the iPhone), these Pre problems sound like design defects.

  10. Matt Davis says:

    pff. the pre is called the pre because its a PRE-iPhone experience…

  11. Lesson here is. Don’t get 1st gens anything.

    The lesson is that by fact the pre is not better than the iPhone.
    Yes that is the saddened truth.

  12. Matt says:

    The only problem i have had was with my iTouch (1st gen) the nice shiny silver back was very prone to scratching . i mean lay it on my nice clean desk and it would scratch. The first day i had it i ran to the apple store to get a rubber case.

    As for cracks and over heating. my 3Gs is rock solid and warming my pocket right now. (not really)

    The interface to a Mac/Windows computer. it is bar none the most user friendly out there.

  13. darrell says:

    no. what we’re seeing here is the same thing that we’ve experienced for years.

    a single product sells well, defects are reported and since there isn’t a wash of others in the product line, it gets a huge amount of attention.

    this happened with white MacBook case discoloring, the 5th Gen iPod and 1st Gen iPod nano scratches, even the Zune’s Y2K9 glitch. you don’t hear about defects with DeLL inspiron because there are so many different types, or broken cases with the samsung yepp because not enough people own them.

    the Pre isn’t defective. it’s selling well and enthusiasts are reporting isolated defects. message boards + a few unhappy owners = a recipe for FUD.

  14. Well, after just under a year and a half with my first iPhone, the black plastic bottom creaks and clicks when pressed on the back where it meets the metal. The metal body is also not flush with the chrome where it meets with the plastic – which is flush oddly enough.

    Needless to say, these issues are petty to me as the iPhone itself works flawlessly. Even more petty than the Pre’s whole ‘falling apart’ issues. 😛

  15. James says:

    Perhaps I’ve just gotten lucky, but I used to be the ultimate early adopter, and I never had issues with my first gen Apple stuff. Then again, I remember the great iMac G5 logic board recall of 2005-that first rev was a disaster (I didn’t own one of those).

    I suspect some of you are right on, and the next rev of the Pre will be a lot better. It still won’t beat my iPhone/Mac combo though. 😉 Once again, for me, Apple’s stuff trumps the rest because of the user experience. 🙂 If only everything in life were so easy.

  16. KenseiDave says:

    Yeah I had the same issue with iPhone 3G after 6 separate phone with dead and stuck pixels i settled with one with a decent screen.

    Also the bezel is pulling away from the foam between it and the glass screen (so I have hug light leakage on the left hand side and the bezel has pulled away from the back plate so there is a gap there at the top left hand corner too.

    Apple was good on all of them, replaced each one but crappy quality control. But I guess they can’t check every screen and unit.

  17. Michael says:

    Let me start by saying I completely love Apple. I purchased a macbook about a year ago and use it everyday. Logic is my best friend being a music major. I owned an ipod nano, traded up for a touch, then it got stolen. At the same time I wanted to switch from verizon to at&t so I could get an iphone to replace my stolen touch. Then I hear about the palm pre. It was a hard descision but I went pre once I heard it could sync with itunes. Also at&t doesnt have great service in my area and there plan was more expensive than sprint’s, plus I get a discount for sprint through my job.

    Getting to the point, I know there has been many negative things posted about the pre, but i don’t agree with all of them. Yes it takes forever to turn on, yes it chews through battery, yes the original software on the phone doesnt include an alarm clock, but I have not had one problem with programs crashing, squeaky keyboards or seperating halves.

    The OS seems stable to me, I can listen to music, use sprint navigation, and send and recieve phone calls seamlessly while Im driving all integrated through my car radio without any programs crashing.

    The phone definately needs some work as far as design, and I am unpatiently waiting for an update so I can record video but overall I am happy with my palm pre.

    Is it an iphone killer? No not by any means. I think they are both great phones and if iphone wasn’t exclusive to at&t I definately would have gone for one.

    Long time reader first time writer.

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