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Summary:

The HTC Shift UMPC slated to appear later this year has me excited more than any other UMPC that’s been announced.  I don’t know if it’s the fact it will be using the new Intel Mobile Platform 2007 processor or the cool sliding keyboard that hides […]

The HTC Shift UMPC slated to appear later this year has me excited more than any other UMPC that’s been announced.  I don’t know if it’s the fact it will be using the new Intel Mobile Platform 2007 processor or the cool sliding keyboard that hides out of the way when not in use.  It just looks so cool in all the pictures I’ve seen and I can’t wait to get my hands on one (that’s for you, Sue).  SlashGear got to play with one at CTIA and has posted a brief look at the Shift.  Lucky them.

Htcshift4

  1. I hope it has anti-drool protection built in.

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  2. Don’t go posting stuff like this, I’ll only want to part with large amounts of cash! ;)

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  3. Pricing hasn’t even been announced yet, Colin. :)

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  4. It’s too large to carry around everywhere, but too small and too hobbled to work on efficiently. In effect, it falls awkwardly between two established form factors (i.e. smartphones and ultra-portable laptops), acquiring none of the positive points of either platform, but suffering all the deficiencies of both. There’s an intriguing article about it here:
    http://www.robinontech.com/2007/01/29/origami-pretty-but-not-very-useful/

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  5. I think the Robin on Tech article is way off.

    “The UMPC is far too bulky to fit in a pocket, so users have to carry it in a bag. It lacks a keyboard, so emailing, word processing and anything which requires sustained data entry are all out of the question.”
    – The OQO, Flipstart, Sony, and others all fit in pockets, although are best in oversized pockets. You can hardly tell I have one in my short pockets in my modeling picture at http://www.math.uaa.alaska.edu/~afkjm/techteach/?q=node/22
    Of course, many have keyboards as well.

    “It cannot be easily used for office tasks.”
    – All the office apps run fine.

    “It cannot be used as an effective media player – as it’s far too big and the battery life is far too short. “
    – Battery is good enough to play a movie. The devices work nicely as video players.

    “It cannot be used for 3D gaming”
    – 3D games like World of Warcraft run on the OQO 02, Flipstart, and Sony.

    “It’s fairly impractical for web-browsing ‘on-the-go’ as most UMPCs incorporate wi-fi but not 3G”
    – Pretty much all the recent UMPC’s have 3G.

    About the only thing I agree with in the article is that on most units, the battery gives out after less than three hours.

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  6. Funny, I had much the same to say about the early UMPCs, since the input method was less than ideal for me, and I’ve used a Tablet PC. HWR is getting better, but it’s not good enough.

    The Shift, however, is NOT the same old UMPC.

    It’s a Libretto. 7″ 800×480 display, a keyboard which spans the full width of the unit, and has normal key actions (albeit in stunted proportions,) and gobs of wireless options.

    The Libretto lacked that last bit, but that’s why *I* slapped in a Wifi card and a CDPD modem back in the day. By the time that you wrap that up, you have a *very* portable computing experience. (Of course, as time goes on, software demands increase, and at a certain point, 64MB of RAM just isn’t going to cut it any longer.)

    There’s an ideal size for these units, and the HTC Shift is at the upper end of that. The OQO is clearly at the lower end, and while it may be perfectly usable, it’s also obscenely expensive, as most tiny computers are known to be.

    They don’t really need to be pocketable, per se, but they do need to be small enough to take with you under any circumstances. There’s no laptop that fits the bill, but these smaller UMPCs are certainly pretty close, if not outright perfect.

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  7. HTC Shift looks like a miniature HP TC1100 tablet and TC1100 was the best tablet pc for a long time until HP droped it’s further development and let the design and technology to deteriorate.
    I wanted my TC1100 to become smaller and lighter and it appears as if it is going to happen though HP will have nothing to do with it.
    The retarded nonsense (pardon my vulgar)that there is only a PDA market and a Laptop market is eventually going to be put to rest by devices like this.

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  8. Not much of a “hands-on” review if you ask me. Wish they would have gone into more detail since they claim to have had time to “play” around with the unit.

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