Here's a new terms for you: MIDS, or Mobile Internet Devices. They're someplace between a UMPC and a Windows Mobile smartphone. Think mini-tablet. Think HTC Advantage. Think something that runs Windows Mobile, that does the sorts of things you need a bigger screen for without the power-comsumption and hassles of a full PC.
Think we'll be seeing more of them soon, if ZDNet's Mary Joe Foley's post about Microsoft's latest hire is right. See, Microsoft just hired Len Kawell (opens in new tab), whose job description is interesting indeed:
I've always found the HTC Advantage interesting but not quite what I'm looking for. Thin it up a bit, maybe drop that keyboard (I prefer a full-sized Bluetooth keyboard), and you're looking at something that could be pretty compelling. Windows Mobile is certainly powerful enough to make a MIDS a UMPC-Killer, but the question is whether or not the market for UMPCs and MIDS is big enough to warrant it. Is is something that interests you?
I'm in agreement, it is a very interesting device. But I see two things wrong with the primary issue being price.
Ranging between $700, $800 and up to $900, it is far too expensive considering you can obviously get a decent laptop, Eee PC for less or even a UMPC for close to the top selling range. Having a cellular connection is great via bluetooth but it is too big to replace a WinMo phone which has a better form factor.
And yes, slim it down and include a stand that isn't also a keyboard for the people who will always prefer a bluetooth keyboard and you've got a real winner.
My rallying cry to all of these manufacturers is LOWER YOUR PRICES! so you can sell more units.
If it were comparable in price to the EeePC, I would bet HTC would have a very hard time keeping them in stock.
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