Palm Pre launch hit by limited supplies

Palm's long-anticipated Pre handset launched in the US on Saturday, sold exclusively through Sprint channels.

The Pre launched in limited quantities, with some major chain stores receiving as few as three handsets, Bloomberg said.

One San Fransisco store sold its entire inventory of 60 handsets in around two hours.

But those who were able to get their hands on the devices praised  its ease of setup and multitasking capabilities, but complained about its built-in software and limited catalog of purchasable apps, as well as a tendency to overheat.

Some commentators stated that although the Palm does feature some new features, there's little to differentiate the offering from the many other smartphones on the market.

“Like first versions of many products, the Pre needs time to mature,” GigaOM pundit Kevin Tofel said.  “It’s a beauty on the surface, but doesn’t yet offer the breadth or depth of competing products.”

The Pre is selling for $199 on a 24-month contract, after a mail-in rebate.