All About the Treo 680

[Ed. note: This unboxing with comments was written and translated by Michael Lin (“puttingdog”) and posted on the Palm is Life Forum. The original Chinese version with larger pictures may be seen here. Gear Diary would like to thank Michael for making his pictures and commentary available to an English Speaking audience and Larry for obtaining Michael’s permission to re-post in English.]

The Palm Treo 680…

My first impression: why does it take so long just to turn on the machine! It takes almost 50 seconds, dude!


I assumed the coating on the front side and the back are different. On the back, it’s more like colored plastic while in front, there’s some kind of color coating applied to it. It doesn’t seem like the finish will be as long-lasting as the Treo 650’s. I think we will just have to wait and see and let time gives us the answer… πŸ˜‰

The volume adjusting and the recording buttons. The side buttons on Treo 650 are much more firm than the ones on Treo 680; the buttons on the 680 stick out more and are also easier to press.

Quiet mode switch button…

The universal connector… Palm has utilized this connector since the LifeDrive and Palm TX generation, also the same for the Treo 650.
They can share the same accessory kits.

One thing worth mentioning is that the Treo 680 has made the connector on the bottom flat, while the Treo 650 has some kind of curve to it. People are having trouble connecting the USB cable after a certain time of usage on Treo 650; Palm may have fixed this problem on the 680.

The keyboard layout…doesn’t seem very different than the Treo 650, the touch and the feel are pretty similar also.

The grooves on both sides were indeed an innovation from its predecessors. Thickness-wise, there isn’t that much difference between the Treo 650 and 680. The grooves give you a feel that its slimmer and also easier to handle.

Palm has changed the function buttons layout. If you’ve been a hardcore Treo 650 user, you’ll really need some time to adjust yourself to the new layout.

Palm had made their famous 5-Way button even bigger, it’s easier to press while keeping it very comfortable.

There is a standard SD card slot with a plastic cover.

When opened…
The stylus for Treo 680 is more or less like a smaller version of the one on Palm TX
With 1/3 lesser amount of power to start with, the Treo 680 is doomed to last less longer than the 650.
Made in China…no surprise…
SIM card slot
Battery cover latch – made of plastic
The six-sided star screw
The camera module, also the speaker…

The camera offers two sizes to choose from: 640×480(VGA) and the 320×240(QVGA)…don’t expect to much of these toys.

Softs come after the Hards

The Application version is v5.2H, and it doesn’t look much different when compared to Treo 650.

One thing worth mentioning: the 5-Way buttons support almost all the built-in applications, you hardly need a stylus to complete all the tasks when you’re just viewing. The sound quality on a call is extremely good; not only is it crisp, but it is very full sounding.
The earlier firmware of the Treo 650 had the problem of low volume during a call, it seems they have fixed this problem on the 680 completely.

The phone application, from left to right…
Call Log…

Palm changed their original application “Media” into “Pics&Videos” – Well, that’s very forthright!

Previewing in the Treo 680 is very fast, even with the large 10MP pictures from Nikon D80…but it still takes a while to actually view the picture. It took me around 4 seconds to view a 10megapixel image.

While all the media files can only be accessed under certain fixed directory…the “Pics&Videos” can navigate your media files like windows explorer.

Choose a picture, you can either save it as wallpaper or save it as contacts.

A navigation page made out of something called “BlueFish”… (I remember that the TX and LifeDrive had this also)

The new PocketTunes…100% fully support the 5-way buttons.

This is one of the application that the 650 lacks (and maybe one of the most wanted!), even cooler, you can go ahead attach the recorded file and send it as an attachment through an e-mail.

Since it’s free, they only offered the older version of Document To Go. Upon installing the desktop software, you’re able to move all of the portable documents such as doc, xls, pdf, and slide files with you.

RAM availability for users

Wired Car Kit…

Two options to choose from…

(I only listed the newer or the never seen applications here…)
Just so you don’t forget, I’m a Palm.

It’s been quite a while since the Palm Inc. updated their Treo family (on the Palm side). At first glance, specification-wise, the 680 and 650 don’t look very different. Palm lowered its price (to $399USD instead of $699 when the 650 first came out ) and also added four colors to their line to win fondness from all ages and all types of people. Though lacking 3G, with its lowered price and four attractive color alternatives, the Treo 680 is guaranteed to be one of the most competitive gifts for this coming holiday season

Michael Lin 2006, all rights reserved.

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2 Comments on "All About the Treo 680"

  1. Nice!! Although I do prefer the colour of my 750v, some people would really like the white.

  2. I like that you can choose from one of four colors…that orange is calling to me. Too bad it’s not WM5 or CDMA. πŸ˜›

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