Friday, September 18, 2009
DON'T RETURN IT! Simple and Easy Fixes for the Palm Pre
In my readings of Palm Pre forums and Twitter posts I noticed several common issues kept popping up, leading many people to return their Pre's as "defective." This is a shame, because many Pre's are returned when in fact they don't need to be. With just a little bit of research you'll find the majority of the Palm Pre's "little gremlins" can be sorted out quite easily.
Plus, rest assured because Palm seems to have listened to its customers and is making improvements to the Pre's hardware.
Read my list of several of these common problems and their fixes after the break...
1) PRE SHUTTING OFF UNEXPECTEDLY!
This is probably the most common issue that I saw. Fortunately, it's a very simple problem, one that can be easily fixed. It is due to a "battery wiggle" issue. A minor manufacturing "snafu" was made when the battery was designed... it's juuuuust small enough that when the Pre is jostled, or if the slider is open or closed, the battery may come off of its contacts momentarily. This can cause the Pre's screen to flicker, shut off, or even shut the Pre down completely. Another problem that comes from this is that this "battery cycling" actually causes the battery to wear down faster!
The solution? I've been telling owners to cut a small piece of double-sided foam tape and install it at the area of the phone where the top edge of battery makes contact. Others have resorted to business cards and stuff, but I don't find that it's ideal. Not surprisingly, Palm has addressed this issue on newer builds by ... *gasp!* installing a small piece of foam in exactly the same place. (I swear when I saw that I felt like such a genius! ... I know... geek is more appropriate!)
Palm also redesigned their stock battery, presumably for a better fit. (The old battery is the one on the left with the grooves, the new one is on the right.) If the above fixes don't work for you, then you can march right up to your Sprint store and demand a new battery. I've been reading that they've been generous in exchanging them. Our Canadian friends to the north should have the newer builds, so this is hopefully a non-issue for them.
2) THE OREO EFFECT!
Many people have noticed that when the Pre is closed, it seems to have a little wiggle if you twist it like an Oreo (hence the name). THIS IS NORMAL: the vast majority of Pre's do this to a negligible degree. But some report that their Pre gets little too loose for comfort. It happened to me once and I discovered an embarrasingly simple fix. See if it works for you.