First of all, this time, there’s no need for any power tools. The Tungsten E2 cradle mod definitely was cool, but this time, the cradle fits the Treo out of the box.

Palm’s latest GSM Treo’s have the same form factor and use the so-called Athena Multiconnector for data exchange – so, a cradle for the Treo 750v should theoretically also work on the Palm Treo 680. Brando gladly provided TamsPalm with a free sample – let’s get reviewing!

Brando’s products ship in envelopes via standard mail. So far, customs always left the envelopes alone, and the contents always arrived in good condition:
0a Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680

The cradle itself ships in a small white box:
1a Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680

One of the first things one notices about the docking station is its size – it is much bigger than the docking stations for other handhelds. Here are a few pictures next to a Treo 680 and a Palm TX:
2a Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680 2b Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680

A small blue LED is integrated into the otherwise-plain(no hotsync button) front of the docking station. The LED is very bright and always lights up when power is available to the cradle:
3a Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680

Putting the Treo into the cradle requires a bit of fidgeting – it takes a bit of practice to find the point where the Treo gets charged. Also, the angle of the Treo to the desk is unusually straight – Palm’s own cradles usually stand less upright. However, the docking station didn’t topple over in my tests:
4a Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680 4b Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680

Brando finally made the USB cable removable – the back of the cradle now has a mini USB port, where the supplied cable(about 1m long, which is still a bit too short) gets plugged in to establish a connection to the computer. The Treo charges decently fast via USB, altough the cradle also seems to be able to accept a mystery power supply unit that isn’t available anywhere:
5a Brando Treo 750v USB Cradle review   a cradle for the Palm Treo 680

The Treo 680 recognizes Brando’s cradle as a power supply – if no PC is connected, the cradle wasn’t identified by a in-house build of AutoSync that works on a Treo 680 and is available on request.

Overall, Brando created a solid cradle for Palm’s Treo 680 and 750v smartphones. If you can live with the slightly fidgety connection process, the lack of a hotsync button and the bulky size, this 20$ cradle will satisfy your Treo’s cradling needs fully.

Related posts:

  1. The Brando Palm Z22 cradle review
  2. The Brando T5 cradle-modded for TE2
  3. Brando Treo 600 docking station review
  4. Tungsten E2 docking station – do it yourself, sorta
  5. Brando Music Dock review

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