February 2008

Detailed review: GD-Itronix Duo-Touch II
The Duo-Touch II by General Dynamics Itronix is a compact, rugged Tablet PC now in its fourth generation. Upgraded electronics provide an overall benchmark performance improvement of 67% over the predecessor model. The Duo-Touch II also uses the GD Itronix DynaVue daylight viewable display technology for very good outdoor readability. Users can toggle between touch screen mode and an active digitizer, enhancing functionality and ease of use. The 4-pound Duo-Touch II is a fully rugged computer, has IP54 sealing, and can accommodate up to three different integrated radios plus GPS. [Read detailed review of the General Dynamics Itronix Duo-Touch II] -- Posted Tuesday, February 26, 2008 by chb

Casio's tiny DT-X7 industrial handheld
Weighing just over five ounces, Casio's DT-X7 industrial handheld data entry and collection terminal fits anywhere. It's an ergonomically designed, Marvell XPA270-powered marvel with an integrated imager and a handy 29-key keypad. The DT-X7 is IP54-sealed and can handle three foot drops, making it perfect for any number of warehousing and inventory applications. It has a 2.4-inch QVGA LCD, runs Windows CE 5.0 and won a prestigious 2008 iF product design award (International Forum Design of Hannover, Germany). [Read description and specs of the Casio DT-X7 data entry terminal] -- Posted Friday, February 22, 2008 by chb

Roper Mobile announces rugged Duros Tablet PC
Roper Mobile Technology -- a subsidiary of Roper Industries that combines DAP Technologies, JLT Mobile Computers, and Black Diamond Advanced Technology -- introduced the Duros Rugged Tablet PC. The Duros is a fourth generation Windows XP-based tablet PC that is sealed to IP-65 specifications and passes the requisite MIL-STD 810F ruggedness tests. Equipped with a sunlight-viewable 8.4-inch SVGA resistive touchscreen and powered by either an AMD Geode LX 800 or a 1GHz Intel Celeron M , the comes with hard drives up to 120GB (or a solid state drive up to 64GB). The battery is hot swappable and the Duros has integrated WiFi, Bluetooth, GSM/GPRS/EDGE/UMTS and optional GPS. It is geared towards harsh field applications such as mining, construction, utilities, public safety or military. [See description and specs of the Roper Mobile Duros rugged Tablet PC]

-- Posted Wednesday, February 20, 2008 by chb

GPS on a keychain and a handy portable power source
Tim looks at the Freedom Keychain GPS 2000, a GPS receiver that's so small, it fits on a keychain. And for those who absolutely, positively never want to be without power, he recommends the iGo everywhere85 portable power supply. -- Posted Monday, February 18, 2008 by chb

Sony Ericsson launches Windows Mobile-based XPERIA platform
Unwilling to let Apple get all the attention with its sleek iPhone, Sony Ericsson launched XPERIA and announced the first XPERIA phone, the X1. A bit smaller, but thicker, then the Apple iPhone, the X1 has a slider QWERTY keyboard, a 3.2 megapixel digital camera, and displays 800 x 480 pixels on its 3-inch screen. This makes for stunningly high resolution and enables the unique XPERIA desktop that's operated via touch. The X1 supports quad-band GSM/GPRS/EDGE as well as quad-band UMTS/HSDPA/HSUPA. [See description and closeups of the Sony Ericsson XPERIA X1] -- Posted Monday, February 11, 2008 by chb

Pharos 600 GPS Phone Upgrades to WM6, and how to do it yourself
The superb Pharos 600 GPS Windows Mobile Professional phone is now available with a Windows Mobile 6 operating system. The unit comes with Ostia software for the United States and Canada pre-installed on a 2 GB mini-SD card. It is virtually the same phone as the WM5 version with the only difference being the new operating system. If you already have a Pharos 600 running WM5, we'll show you how you can upgrade to WM6 for free and save yourself 600 bucks. [Read review of the Pharos 600 with WinMo 6, and how to upgrade for free.] -- Posted Monday, February 11, 2008 by chb

What you get with Palm's free WinMo 6 update for the Treo 750
Available since December of 2007, Palm's free Windows Mobile 6 update for the Treo 750 is certainly a good thing, and we want to take this opportunity to congratulate Palm and to express my appreciation for being among the few manufacturers to offer a WM6 upgrade. [Read about Palm's free Windows Mobile 6 upgrade for the Treo 750]
-- Posted Friday, February 8, 2008 by chb

Tim loves the MagicJack Voice over IP service!
CES is such a pandemonium that it is very easy to walk right by a booth unwittingly not knowing that it could have the greatest thing since Viagra. That almost happened to me with the MagicJack booth as I was intent on reaching another exhibitor and had my blinders on. [Read detailed description of the amazing MagicJack VoIP service] -- Posted Thursday, February 7, 2008 by chb

Can Raketu replace a SIM card?
Raketu is a VoIP-based service that has been available for desktops, but is now offered for Windows Mobile devices as well. It is supposed to enable you to use your handset to make calls anywhere in the world free. [Read Tim Hillebrand's review of the Raketu social networking meets communications meets media in one application.] -- Posted Wednesday, February 6, 2008 by chb

Apple releases US$499 16GB iPhone
It had to happen. More memory on the iPhone. Apple released a 16GB iPhone for US$499 while the 8GB iPhone remains at US$399. That's good news for those are used to filling up 80GB iPods and found the iPhone's 8GB sorely lacking. Me, I have maybe 200 songs and 3,000 pictures on my 8GB iPhone, and almost 5GB left over. I might change my tune if I get into watching movies on my iPhone. As is, I'd like to have seen a price break on the 8GB iPhone and less AT&T bureaucratic boneheadedness when it comes to upgrading an iPhone plan (need two area codes on a family plane? No can do.). -- Posted Tuesday, February 5, 2008 by chb

Psion Teklogix adds rugged PDA
Psion Teklogix added the ikôn Rugged PDA to its lineup of rugged handhelds, vehicle mounts, and terminals. The compact and lightweight ikôn is powered by a 624MHz Marvell PXA270, has a full-VGA outdoor-viewable 3.7-inch display, runs Windows CE 5.0 or Windows Mobile 6.0, survives 5-foot drops, and has an impressive IP65 ingress protection rating. Both a QWERTY and a numeric keypad are available. [Read description and specs of the Psion Teklogix ikôn Rugged PDA] -- Posted Monday, February 4, 2008 by chb

Microsoft offers $44.6 billion for Yahoo, future cloudy
Here at Pen Computing we remember when there were just two web listings. John December's, the leading one, and Yahoo. We don't know what John does today, but Microsoft just offered to pay US$44.6 BILLION for Yahoo. And that at a time when Gartner predicts Apple's market share will double, and the future belongs to snazzy little web surfers and open source efforts. It's hard to see the trajectories of products like Vista and Windows Mobile fitting into that scenario. -- Posted Friday, February 1, 2008 by chb