EJM Designs Limited Blog

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Palm Pre and Me: Networking Fail

Because in the land of milk and honey all is not milk and honey. That is: with the Palm Pre.

Don't get me wrong; I'm still blown away by what it can and does do. For instance, I get a hell of a lot more done in clearing emails on the run, blogging (coming soon from me through the phone), and once you get the hang of the zoom gestures, fully-rendering web pages are a breath of fresh air.

But this morning I woke up and tried to check my AccuWeather app as the rumblin' was a-comin' from the west and the phone stalled out. When I jumped on my email to do some early brush-clearing, it told me "The network is not available. Please enable networking in order to continue. Activate Wi-Fi?" Wait - what? Shouldn't the Sprint Network be rocking out?

Later I made phone calls without issue, but the "network" would still not respond to my desire to check my facebook or Gmail. I just figured it was down for a time and went through the rest of my morning.

Once I got settled into my work after some AMA and some networking with a good friend, I tried again. No dice. "Well," I thought, "The internet is not working on my phone. Perhaps I should just click the 'Help' function on the interface."

Palm Pre fail
Apparently a search of help for the internets is an Auto-FAIL because the base Help product ...requires an internet connection.

(apologies for the fuzzy image - despite my Pre early adoption, my digital camera is still an older 2.1 megapixel Sony Cybershot. That is officially 0.9 megapixels LESS than the phone I took a picture of

UPDATE NOTE: Thanks to @FlipTheOrg for the following tip: "Take screenshots of your Pre by pressing orange+sym+p at the same time, then check photo album." Hawt.)

So still perplexed, I went through the [enter any cell phone provider name here] hoops. I called the store I bought it at. They didn't have tech repair people. I called the people at the tech-repair-capable store. They didn't have the tools to troubleshoot over the phone. So I called the national tech assistance line.

While I was on hold to speak with the HelpDesk CSR, the message announced something and I just about smacked my own forehead - on purpose - into the corner of my desk: "If you have not yet turned off your device and turned it back on...." Damn.

Condensed: I did that and my internets worked fine.

I'm not sure if it's my tenacity and practice of sometimes searching thousands of lines of code for a misplaced period, comma, or curvy bracket, but every once in a while I hit myself in the head because when I run into a computer or phone problem I can't get right away, my brain (or caffeine) turns on the "Solve!" center before the Procedural System is booted to say "Hey, um, did you reboot?"

I'm very good at what I do, but sometimes it's nice - and humbling - to be reminded that you are human. I certainly am.


  1. had the same problem and thank you for posting this for another knuckle-head. My internet is back now. (hitting forehead).

  2. So very pleased I could help at least one other person. It's the simple things.... Thanks for the comment!

  3. Lots of head banging going around. Friend called me to get his Exchange email working for his phone, after getting SSL installed for OWA (BTW, the palm pre requires a valid SSL certificate, no self signed certs here) we were getting this same network error. After googling around, I am now banging my head against the corner of my desk.

  4. Robert- Reboot, reboot, reboot. Maybe if I type it enough it'll stick in my head. Thanks for the comment.