In 2018, Palm released something of a minimum viable product: the first-gen Palm phone was designed as a companion device through Verizon’s number-sharing program, incapable of operating solo. Tech reviewers panned it upon release, calling it “a tiny second phone no one needs” and “more promise than product.” But with today’s updates, including a totally new version of the Palm, a lot of that could be changing for the better.
An announcement from Palm and Verizon states that the new Palm phone is now capable of operating as a primary mobile phone. New software updates are to thank for the improvements, which also include a longer battery life, snappier performance and better image capture through the phone’s 12-megapixel rear camera. In order to use a Palm as a standalone device, users will have to trade in their original Palm at a Verizon store and get the new one; turns out it takes more than a software update to take a device this small from secondary-only to solo-ready.
The credit-card-sized Palm still doesn’t provide the right platform to comfortably type out text messages, let alone compose a serious email. And that’s not likely to change. But considering it’s a device meant to make your downtime more truly disconnected and screen-free, one can almost see a glimmer of what Palm was trying to do all along. For a lot of savvy, socially-conscious tech users, these little steps in the right direction could be reason enough to join Steph Curry in going small.
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