Ultra Mobile PCs

There is so much hype on the internet about these things at the moment, call out your fan boys MS, theres money to be made.

Quite frankly im not at all impressed with these things at all.

For one thing size… Huge is not the word, these are bordering on 12″ laptop sizes, you will definatly have to use two hands to operate one. They will never fit in a normal persons pocket meaning you have to either carry round a bag or get huge pocketed clothes, but they are going to be heavy enough to get on your nerves walking around with them.

The whole reason Ipod Nanos sold so well is that you can hardly notice you are carrying one at all.

One problem Apple had with their Nanos was that the scratched easily and the screens broke, you think this is going to be any different with this? It has a huge screen just itching for scratch, and as your sposed to be carrying these everywhere, theres got to be a possibilty that you might drop it. Lets see how it survives that!
Security? Laptops are snatched every day and mobile phone theft is a huge problem as well, if you are carrying round a basically a large mobile which is going to be worth a heck of a lot of money, then its jsut going to scream steal me, so ok you can jsut use it inside, but havnt you just lost a whole lots of its usefulness?

And as highlighted by the WordPress only yesterday, when your browsing the internet via wifi, you are transmitting most website passwords you enter in plain text for anyone to steal and abuse, any smart kid will be able to sit in the same caffee as a chump who bought one and watch most of his internet activity and then save his user names and passwords to use later.

You know these things are going to cost a small fortune, come on its microsoft!

And being Microsoft you can be assured that the software will be buggy and unpatched for many months after release and be stuffed full of crippling DRM as well.

No quite frankley i think this is a bit like the Web2.0 of computers, after the initally buzz, they will die down and like PDAs only really be used by a small amount of people.

I’ll stick with a 12″ ibook or thinkpad and be much happier as a result of it.

Update: In this Inquirer Preview from CeBit the say the retail price is likely to be 1500-1800 euros!!!


16 thoughts on “Ultra Mobile PCs”

  1. I use a Dell 700m daily. lightweight. 12.1″ (30.734 cm…) diagonal screen, but it’s WXGA so it’s as wide as a normal screen. I have WiFi, and run WinXP SP2, non-tablet edition. Nor do I have a need for a tablet. I have no idea what MS is doing. It would have made more sense to go smaller and compete with the PSP/iPod, or go higher and have a useful-sized tablet PC (already out there). Pretty weak, I agree.

  2. I actually liked the sound of the origami at first and then when I saw it i thought fugly…lol….but saying that if offered a free one i would take it but wouldnt pay for it…intels looks nice tho

  3. I like them, they have quite a huge geek-o-factor, but I too doubt that I will ever buy one. I’ll be going to CeBIT next Wednesday and Samsung is demonstrating one of those things there, I believe I can develop a proper opinion about it there and will blog about it when I get back.

  4. Don’t forget that these are only the first version, there’s some nicer looking ones coming out later on. UMPC states that the should be a minimum of a 7″ screen so that limits the form factor quite a bit.
    Funny thing is there’s already rumors that Apple are looking at Intel’s design so maybe they’ll be something interesting from them at some point.

    As for the size and weight, when I was at school I remember carrying around a information device about 7″ diagonal that weighted under 2 pounds. They were carbon based as well. You might know then as books :P .

  5. Yes there is a lot of hype about this new computer and also a lot of bad press. But it all comes down to – no one device fits all. I wont be buying one – probably because it will be to costly for me but there will be a market. Mobile workers who dont want anything as big as a laptop/tablet but dont want to carry a pda and a mobile phone. I have even heard that they will be making defferent sizes of the device – will have to wait and see.

  6. As for the risk of getting passwords stolen, I’ve set up a private SSH login at home for my own use when on the run. But most sensitive passwords such as banking passwords and so are transmitted over SSL, so there’s no immediate danger for those.
    These computers sure looks good though, but as you’re pointing out, MS might leave the software unpatched, and I’d really like to have BSD on a computer like this one.

  7. I have only just woken up nitro!

    Some times wordpress can be a bit slow to update, or a comment is flagged for moderation. I dont delete comments very often and when i do they are with good reason.

  8. I think once the costs come down we will see a lot of these. It provides a good bridge between a PDA (not enough space and small screen) and a notebook (too large to really haul around everywhere). I wouldn’t be one of the first to rush out and buy one, but if they are still around after a couple of years and the price dropped enough, I’d pick one up.

  9. Origami is an interesting stuff. Although I bet it wouldn’t last long. I mean after just a few months a better gadget will be released and this Origami thing will be outdated.

  10. It would be interesting if Origami devices could connect to the phone network also, enabling voice calls through the phone network and switching to voip over wi-fi wherever it’s available. I still won’t buy one, but it would be interesting :)

  11. I think one day in the not so distant future, docks will be made so you can plug in the origami in your car (imagine it much as the mini Mac going into where your CD player is), in your toilet, in your kitchen (fridge?), on your nightstand. The docks will have all the usual stuff you need like power, instant LAN etc.

    Dont think it’s meant to fit into pockets and while batt life is a tad short, what if you don’t really use it undocked much? Just imagining it like for everyday use…

  12. Yes, the hype did indeed outway the ‘official’ product announcement. MS probably generated some of the hype early, but I think it really got out of hand on a few of the popular weblogs.

    I also would have concerns about the battery life and its durability under use. One drop could be the last from the looks of it.

    Great information on your site, thanks!

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