A technology blog for The Economist Group IT team

Saturday, October 25, 2003

Ultraportables etc.

The options are pretty much outlined on Dynamism's or Kemplar's (better) site. I bought a JVC 7230 only to find that it was somewhat second-user and took it back. They're in short supply and the shop didn't have another (it was in Haggle Court Road) so I'm still considering the options.

When I took the JVC machine back I was offered the new Sony PC-TR1MP (there's a TR2 out too) for �1560. This is bigger than the JVC machine (see Kemplar's excellent size comparison chart), though, so I didn't buy. However, the Sony does have a DVD drive built in (hence it's height) and the screen is fantastic. Indidentally, that was another defect on the JVC machine - a lit pixel; worryingly lots of manufacturers refer to such a defect as "normal" and not covered by a warranty. My advice is to check the machine you're buying in the shop before you buy. Without an optical drive loading software is tricly even with a WLAN connection.

One manufacturer that takes a different approach, however, is Sharp. Their Actius MM10 can be docked to a desktop so that its disk appears as a disk on the desktop allowing easy access to whatever's on the notebook from the desktop.

Of course any discussion on notebooks should cover tablets too, but I'm hoping a colleague will be able to provide a better insight than me for next week.
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