VIA Announces NanoBook UMD Reference Design - HotHardware
VIA Announces NanoBook UMD Reference Design

VIA Announces NanoBook UMD Reference Design

VIA to Define Mobility 2.0 with Revolutionary New VIA NanoBook UMD Reference Design

Provides rich computing, Internet, and multimedia experience in a light, ultra portable notebook delivering up to five hours of battery life

Taipei, Taiwan, 05 June 2007 - VIA Technologies, Inc, a leading innovator and developer of silicon chip technologies and device platform solutions, will unveil the new VIA NanoBook UMD (Ultra Mobile Device) Reference Design at VTF2007 on 6 June 2007 in Taipei.  Designed to meet the needs of today's Mobility 2.0 lifestyle, the VIA NanoBook packs the performance, connectivity and functionality of a notebook PC into a sleek and light ultra portable clamshell form factor that weighs less than 850g.  The VIA NanoBook is powered by the ultra low voltage 1.2GHz VIA C7-M processor and delivers up to 5 hours of battery life. Powered by a choice of Microsoft Windows XP or Windows Vista Basic operating systems, it comes with host of advanced features, including a full keyboard, a crisp 7" WVGA screen with touch panel, up to 1GB DDR2 SDRAM, and a minimum 30GB HDD, as well as 802.11g WiFi, Bluetooth and Ethernet support, plus a DVI and two USB 2.0 ports.

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To provide users with additional flexibility when they are on the move, the VIA NanoBook also features a USB slot next to the screen that will enable the snap-in integration of a variety of World Time Clock/Calendar, GPS, VOIP, and broadband wireless modules.  "The VIA NanoBook UMD Reference Design turns my dream of creating a full featured Ultra Mobile Device that delivers a rich computing, communications, and Internet computing experience into a reality," said Wenchi Chen, President and CEO of VIA Technologies, Inc. "With its highly-functional yet ultra compact form factor and extended battery life, it will enable people to enjoy the Mobility 2.0 lifestyle at any place and any time."

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I think there is a grey area where a device is too small to be comfortably used like a laptop and too big to be conveniently portable, and this thing looks like it fits right into that zone. It's way too big to fit in a pocket and if I'm going to carry something around in a bag, it might as well be a laptop with a bigger screen, more functionality and a better keyboard. That's probably why UMPCs haven't quite taken off. I also don't like that a lot of the potential screen real-estate is being wasted (I'm refering to the large hole in the bottom and the old-school non-backlit LCD display). I'd imagine this thing is about the same size as a 11" laptop and the only advantage it seems to have is better battery life.

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