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Visor Edge
Sunday March 18, 2001 - 10:37 PM EST - By James Hromadka

"Button, Button - Who's got the button?"

The Visor Edge's hardware buttons are a shiny metallic silver color and are convex, unlike the concave buttons on the other Visors. This would have been a problem if the buttons (except for up/down) weren't recessed. This makes the buttons feel concave and thus easier to press.

Another nice thing about the buttons is that the application buttons have their symbols engraved into them instead of using paint which can rub off. The silk-screen buttons are unchanged.

Silent Alarm PrefsThe translucent power button has been redesigned to perform double duty. When the Visor Edge is charging, the power button blinks neon green as an indicator and stays solid when fully charged. You can also use the blinking light as a silent alarm for DateBook appointments. Go into a daily calendar view and select Options | Alarm Preferences.

Here you can switch between the usual alarm alert sounds and a new silent option. Set the silent alarm to blink from 1-15 minutes and never bother others again. The blinking is visible even when the Visor Edge's cover is closed. This is a pretty nifty option that I'm sure we'll see on all future Visor models.

The cradle

The VE's cradleThe Visor Edge uses a twelve pin connector that is incompatible with other Visor models. The Edge slides securely into the recharging cradle by using the grooves on the sides of the Edge. An A/C Adapter plugs into the USB connector in the same manner as the Visor Prism. In fact, I was able to use the A/C adapter from my Visor Prism to recharge the Visor Edge. Handspring says that it takes 90 minutes to fully recharge a drained battery. It seemed to me that recharging the Visor Edge was much faster than the Visor Prism.

For those that synchronize using the Ir port, it has been moved further down the left side of the Visor Edge. I can only imagine that this is because of the internal circuitry of the Visor Edge. Right-handed users may find it necessary to hold the Edge differently when beaming to another user as the left palm covers the Ir port when I hold it.

Fast Lookup

Fast LookupI have always felt that the AddressBook was the core application that needed an update the most. Handspring has breathed new life into AddressBook by adding the Fast Lookup feature. Press the Up button to activate Fast Lookup, then use the Visor's hardware buttons to type in the person's name. Just imagine typing in a name like on the telephone but with fewer buttons:

  • DateBook = Last name A-L
  • AddressBook = Last name M-Z
  • ToDo List = First name A-L
  • Memo Pad = First name M-Z

  • As you're typing in a name, if you see the person's name on screen press the Down button to scroll to the correct name then press the AddressBook button to open the entry. It sounds complicated on paper but in practice is very easy to work.

    What makes Fast Lookup nice is that you don't need to use the stylus to open an address book entry. I turned off the option to remember the last category so AddressBook defaults to showing all entries. If you don't want to use Fast Lookup you can turn it off under Options | Preferences.

    A familiar look >>  

    Story Sections
    Visor Edge
    The Casing
    >"Button, Button - Who's got the button?"
    A familiar look

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    Product Details
    Name: Visor Edge
    Company: Handspring
    Size: 4.7" x 3.1" x 0.44"
    Weight: 4.3 oz. alone; 4.9 w/ stylus;
    5.8 w/ stylus & lid; 5.8 w/ stylus & slot
    Processor: DragonBall VE 33 MHz
    Memory: 8 MB
    Ir Port: lower left side
    Casing Colors: Silver, Blue, Red (all are anodized aluminum)
    Price: $399.00

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