November 2005

Acer introduces TravelMate C200 Tablet PC
Acer America introduced the TravelMate C200 series of Tablet PC convertibles. Unlike most convertibles to-date, the C200 uses a patented sliding-track mechanism for a much more stable writing surface than the common pivot/swivel mechanism used by almost all other Tablet PC convertibles provides. The C200 has a 12.1" display, uses either a 2GHz Pentium M 760 or a 1.5GHz Celeron M 370, has up to 2GB of RAM, up to 100GB of disk, and a slot-loading DVD burner or conventional DVD/CD-RW. The device also has a 4-in-1 card reader, 802.11a/b/g WiFi, Bluetooth, Gigabit LAN, and a 56k modem. There are three USB 2.0 ports and Firewire. Prices start at US$1,399. A top-of-the-line model with biometric fingerprint scanner gos for US$1,899. Our take: it's about time someone re-introduced a more stable solution than the ubiquitous but pretty useless pivot. IBM used a similar solution many years ago on its P750 and P360 Thinkpads. [see press release] [see Acer product page] -- Posted Tuesday, November 22, 2005 by chb

Indian Tablet PC: the Connoi T2300
Indian computer maker Connoiseur Electronics now offers the Connoi T2300 Tablet PC convertible. The device is a fairly standard TPC convertible with up-to-date specs (Pentium M, up to 2GB RAM, 12.1" XGA display, 802.11b/g, internal optical drive, four USB 2.0 ports, 5.5 lbs., etc.). Price seems to be 65,500 rupies plus tax, or about US$1,435, which according to Connoi makes the T2300 "the only affordable tablet available in India." -- Posted Monday, November 14, 2005 by chb

SynapticsDual Mode TouchPad holds potential
Interface solutions specialist Synaptics' Dual Mode TouchPad module transforms the Synaptics notebook TouchPad from a navigation device to a media control center with the touch of a button. In default navigation mode, the TouchPad provides cursor navigation. When the dual mode button is engaged blue LEDs illuminate application icons and controls on the pad. The illuminated interface offers multimedia controls, including volume, play/pause, stop, previous, next and mute, and also application launch buttons for Internet Explorer, search, mail, and media player. To switch from cursor mode to media mode, users tap on the upper right tap zone on the TouchPad module. The Dual Mode TouchPad is now shipping with the new Medion MD 96500 notebook computer. It's easy to see many other mobile/tablet applications for this interesting technology. [see release] -- Posted Monday, November 14, 2005 by chb

PCMCIA ExpressCard makes inroad
Once upon a time, the PC Card ruled the expansion card field. Today, those cards look quaintly huge and have long been replaced by CF Cards, Memory Sticks, SF Cards and other smaller formats. For most applications, but not all. That's because the smaller formats generally can't provide serious hardware expansion. That's where the PCMCIA's ExpressCard comes in. PCMCIA calls them the plug-in I/O cards for the next generation of PC devices. There are two form factors (2.1 x 3.4 and 1.35 x 3), both smaller than the old PC Card. Both support the USB 2.0 and PCI Express interface--much faster than the old CardBus. PCMCIA just completed its 5th ExpressCard Compliance Workshop in Taiwan, with 15 companies testing 32 products. At this point, the ExpressCard standard is used in more than 95% of all notebooks, giving the PCMCIA ExpressCard a good chance for success. [see ExpressCard site for all information] -- Posted Monday, November 14, 2005 by chb

Handango launches Tablet PC Catalog
Mobile systems software vendor Handango has entered the market for downloadable Tablet PC software with the launch of a Tablet PC catalog. Customers can download applications at Handango's Web site and on the Microsoft Windows XP Tablet PC Software store. Now, Tablet PC owners have a place to discover and download the best selection of software for their Tablet PCs. Additionally, Handango has extended its robust marketplace platform, Handango AMPP, to support Tablet PC applications, enabling Tablet PC manufacturers to create new streams of revenue through their own branded software storefronts. Example of such storefronts: Agilix Labs, Inc. (mobile learning solutions) uses the technology to provide secure Tablet PC software transaction processing and provisioning at and -- Posted Tuesday, November 8, 2005 by chb

What a deal: Toshiba R10 for US$999.20
Received this morning: Toshiba email offering the basic Satellite R10 notebook convertible for just US$999.20. 3 USB 2.0 ports, IEEE 1394, SD card slot, TV-out (S-Video), Ethernet, V.92/56K modem, RGB port, 14.1" XGA display, 256MB DDR2 SDRAM, Wi-Fi, 40GB HDD, CD-RW/DVD-ROM drive. The email says Pentium processor, the actual offer seems to be for the base 1.5GHz Celeron M 370. Still, a great deal. -- Posted Tuesday, November 8, 2005 by chb

Tiny Nokia 770 Internet Tablet now shipping
What is this? Deja-vue all over again with a little webpad? Didn't we go through this four years ago and it went nowhere? Didn't even mighty Microsoft throw in its towel with the shortlives Mira/SmartDisplay? Well, Nokia has never been one to shy away from a challenge in its never-ending quest for wireless supremacy, and hence the Nokia 770 Internet Tablet. It's a 5.6 x 3.2 x 0.8 inch black and matte-silver mini-tablet that weighs 8.1 ounces, has a 65k color 4.1-inch 800 x 480 pixel touchscreen 128MB of flash (over 64MB available to the user), a RS-MMC card, Bluetooth, 802.11b/g WiFi, a 1,500mAH battery good for 3 hours' worh of browsing, and it runs the Linux "Internet Tablet 2005 software edition". Though this is a Nokia device, no telephony. That'll happen next year with the 2006 Internet Tablet edition that supports VoIP and Instant Messaging. -- Posted Monday, November 7, 2005 by chb

New Tablet PC, pen slate reviews posted
We have posted full reviews of the two new Itronix models (the GoBook Duo-Touch pen slate and the semi-rugged GoBook VR1), Motion Computing's LE1600, HP's Compaq tc4200 Tablet PC convertible, and OQO's tiny model01. The OQO, of course, has since been upgraded to the model01+, but the review remains relevant as not that much has changed. -- Posted Friday, November 4, 2005 by chb