Palm Tungsten T3 

A new departure for a handheld device the ability to work landscape as well as portrait, this more powerful machine looks the part and I am sure will be every yuppies desire, that is if there are still such people.

It is 10.5x7.5x1cm when closed, there is a leather flap that folds from the top. Pull the body apart by 2.5cm and your screen area increases from the 320x320 modern norm to 320x480 64k colour. One click on an icon and the whole display becomes landscape.

The extra space by default opens with the soft keyboard but in most situations a click on another icon closes this and the whole screen display enlarges. This is useful in a range of situations but perhaps the most useful is the spreadsheet (both Word and Excel are supported) where seeing a little more information can be vital. However be warned that not all applications can currently take advantage of the extra screen space.

One application I always port to any handheld is File Maker Mobile and one of my databases has 4830 records. My own old 5x takes over 20 seconds to search for an item where there are four occurrences, recently I looked at the Tungsten E and this search took a tad under four seconds, on the T3 it took just over one second.

The main reasons more memory, 64MB and a faster 400MHz processor. I recently discovered a shareware image display package and I scanned portions of maps into the PC and then synchronised to both the ‘E’ and the ‘T3’ both displayed zoomed and moved across the map excellently. Anyone travelling to a strange town or city can really take advantage of the colour brightness and speed, there are ten levels of zoom.

As with most modern handhelds extra memory can be added by using SD or MMC cards. These mean that you can watch videos and play MP3 files using the built in applets providing the files are stored on the cards.

The T3 has built in Bluetooth support so connectivity is easy for those who can never be uncontactable. It is technically possible to download messages with attachments up to a massive 5MB using the pre installed VersaMail 2.6.

Graffitti 2 is standard and to me anyway is more logical than it’s predecessor. It is also possible to write anywhere on the screen rather than just in the small area at the bottom as with earlier units.

If you need Bluetooth then this is the handheld for you, if you major applets take advantage of the extra screen size then like wise. However it is twice the price of the Tungsten E and for some then that may prove the better purchase.

Shortly I shall go to the other extreme and look at the new entry level Palm Zire, no colour and perhaps that will wean me back to my 5x gently.

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