This could be a precursor to the lower-priced AMD powered Samsung UMPCs we’re hearing about. For $699, you can pre-order a Pepper Pad 3 from Amazon and hope to see your handheld around mid-August. Let’s see if these few form factor details sound familiar at all:
- 7-inch touch screen
- 2.1 pounds
- 20 Gigabyte hard drive
- Bluetooth and WiFi integrated
- Powered by the AMD Geode™ LX 800 processor
- Linux operating system
- Built-in thumboard, half on each side of the screen
I’d say the price-point is good and the AMD chip should conserve power. The real question is: will there be a large demand for a Linux based handheld like this? More importantly,
I have to wonder how long the device is, considering the keypad on both sides of a 7-inch screen. Update: I missed the device length in the press release; it’s 11.4-inches long which isn’t bad.
Pepper plans a loyalty rebate on this model for any owners of previous Pepper Pads. Oh and before the naming rumors start flying: don’t call this a UMPC device per the Intel and Microsoft definition. ;) The full press release follows.
(via CarryPad Journal)
Pepper Computer and Hanbit Electronics Announce New Pepper Pad 3 Web Player
New handheld device offers breakthroughs in performance and price
NEW YORK, June 6, 2006 – Pepper Computer, Inc., and Hanbit Electronics Co., Ltd., today announced a new version of the innovative Pepper Pad Web player. The sleek new Pepper Pad 3 offers three times faster Web browsing than the current Pepper Pad, plus greatly enhanced video performance. The new Pepper Pad 3, announced at the DigitalLife press preview here, can be pre-ordered today at Amazon.com and will be available to consumers through retailers in August with a manufacturer’s suggested price of $699.
The Pepper Pad 3 is being manufactured by Hanbit of Suwon, South Korea, based on Pepper Computer’s new Pad 3 Reference Design and features the new Pepper Software Platform 3.0. Hanbit licensed the rights to Pepper’s hardware and software designs under an agreement signed last December.
Pepper Pad Web players are the first handheld devices to deliver a secure, seamless user experience for the increasing array of entertainment and communications services built around the convergence of the Web and digital media. The Pepper Pad 3 includes all the features of the current Pepper Pad, plus longer battery life, faster Wi-Fi and USB connectivity, and a built-in Web camera. The integrated Pepper 3.0 software allows users to browse the Web, e-mail and IM, download and stream music, videos, movies, and photos – right out of the box. It offers a far richer viewing experience than small-screen PDAs or mobile phones, and much less maintenance than a complex laptop.
The Pepper Pad 3 hardware is based on the AMD Geode™ LX [email protected]* processor, which delivers the best performance per watt overall solution in the 32-bit x86 industry today. The Pepper Pad 3, running the Linux Kernel 2.6 embedded operating system, has a three times faster Web browser, than the award-winning Pepper Pad introduced last summer. The lower power consumption of the AMD Geode processor, coupled with a new lithium ion battery and enhanced power management, will provide up to 50 percent more battery life.
At 11.4” by 5.9” and 2.1-pounds, the new, less expensive Pepper Pad 3 is smaller and more portable than the current Pepper Pad, and also offers an ample seven-inch touch screen, a full QWERTY keypad, a 20-gigabyte hard drive, and built-in speakers. Unlike other portable wireless devices, the Pepper Pad 3’s screen allows users to view full-width Web pages and watch full-screen videos. It is rugged and splash-resistant for use around the house or on the go, and its infrared and UPnP capabilities allow consumers to control and access any number of PCs, TVs, set-top boxes, CD players, and other A/V devices.
“Pepper has had the advantage of four year’s experience to fine-tune the Pepper Pad 3 to the specific consumer requirements for a handheld Web player,” said Do-gyun Lee, CEO of Hanbit. “They were able to build that knowledge into the third version of the Pepper Pad, resulting in an elegant, powerful product precisely aimed at today’s market.”
“Hanbit’s implementation of our design reflects the company’s combination of manufacturing innovation and excellence,” said Len Kawell, CEO of Pepper. “We’re very pleased that Hanbit has been able to go from licensing agreement to commercial production in such a short time.”
“The innovative Pepper Pad 3 is an ideal showcase for the low power and high performance benefits enabled by the AMD Geode LX processor family,” said Erik Salo, director of marketing for AMD’s Embedded Computing Solutions Division. “This product takes full advantage of the excellent performance per watt offered by AMD Geode processors to give consumers seamless access to digital media virtually everywhere they go.”
Like the current Pepper Pad, the Pepper Pad 3 can be used anywhere. Consumers can take advantage of home Wi-Fi networks and public hotspots for access to online services. Offline, they can play digital media they’ve stored on the Pepper Pad 3’s built-in hard disk. Both versions of the Pad have two options for text entry: a built-in lighted thumb-style QWERTY keypad or an optional keyboard connected wirelessly by Bluetooth or wired through the Pepper Pad 3’s USB ports. In addition to the built-in stereo speakers and microphone, there are jacks for headphones, external microphone and external video display, plus a direction pad and scroll wheel for navigation.
Pepper Computer also announced a consumer loyalty program for current Pepper Pad owners, enabling them to purchase a Pepper Pad 3 at a discounted rate. Details of the rebate offer will be available at www.pepper.com shortly.