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Old 05-14-2006, 11:39 AM   #1
Bob Russell
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New Sony Vaio PDA?

Sony seems to have started a new viral marketing campaign on the tail of the very successful Microsoft Origami marketing efforts.

The video is on the US Sony site, so it's likely the new product will be available for US consumers. And James Kendrick points out that it has a label of "ar_ux_teaser" on the URL, which can't help but make one wonder if that's some kind of tie to the UX PDAs of the past. More likely we would think it would be along the lines of recent rumors about a new Sony UMPC, as some kind of extension of the Vaio line. The final screen says "New from Sony VAIO... Is your finger really the gatekeeper?" That might refer to the difference between a UMPC and a Tablet PC, because you can use your finger with a UMPC, but Tablet PCs require a battery powered active sylus so you can't use your finger to control it.

To get a feel for the Vaio line, you can take a look at this artistic overview video of the existing product line at the Sony site. I've also attached a picture of an interesting UMPC model with built in EDGE for cellular data with Cingular coverage.

As of today, the final screen also says, "Come back tomorrow for more." I think I will!

Via JKOnTheRun.
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Old 05-14-2006, 05:22 PM   #2
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I think the "finger gateway" reference might be referring to the fingerprint reader.
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Old 05-14-2006, 09:31 PM   #3
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If it has a fingerprint reader, that would sure make sense. Thks James.
More info now also at:
http://jkontherun.blogs.com/jkonther...ony_ux_pi.html
http://mobilitytoday.com/news/006482/sony_ux_umpc

And the Sony site is apparently updated also, with the full disclosure coming on the 5/16.
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Old 02-12-2007, 03:31 AM   #4
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UMPC in China -- Honey I shrunk the Vaio!

I wandered into the Sony store in Jinbi Plaza here in Kunming. I saw the Vaio UMPC pictured under "Portability" in the referred video. It was sitting in a docking station. The docking station was securely cabled to the display shelf. Interestingly the UMPC was detachable and not secured.

The screen was very Microsoftish and hard to read. If I were a little bitty person with little bitty eyes, it would be fine. It was made with two grip posts on each side like the grip section of a camera, but bilateral. The screen slid up to reveal a keyboard. It had WiFi.

The cursor, run by a joy-key at the upper right, was devilishly hard to control, seeming to need constant correction. Could I ever get used to it? I do not know the screen resolution. There was no literature present and the usual salespeople were not hanging about to answer questions.

Conclusion: It was very cute and a nice piece of miniaturization. It was easy to hold. The keyboard was thumbable. If it was blown up by a factor of two in each dimension it might be usable. I have not seen any other UMPC up close. If they are all this tiny, they are not for me.
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Old 02-12-2007, 04:54 PM   #5
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Not sure how they can try to market the UX as a PDA, as it is clearly in the UMPC area; though a bit larger than I'd want to carry around. Here in Japan the second-hand laptop market is quite huge, and suprisingly enough you can pick up one of Sony's UMPCs for >$1000. Of course when you see how many are being sold, you have to wonder why people are trading them in. That's what I ask myself, and initially I was really wanting one. Guess I'll wait as see what comes next, and yse, the Sony UMPC does come with an integrated fingerprint scanner.
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