Blog Post

Redfly steps in where Palm feared to tread

Stay on Top of Enterprise Technology Trends

Get updates impacting your industry from our GigaOm Research Community
Join the Community!

Redfly_dockThose of you left with a gaping void with Palm’s killing off the Foleo smartphone companion pre-launch should take note at an interesting product(s) that will be announced at CES.  I have been in conversation with Celio Corporation who will be showing the Redfly product line at CES and it is like a more versatile solution than the Foleo would have been.  Redfly is at its most basic a smartphone dock that can accept a monitor, keyboard and mouse to extend the Windows Mobile smartphone for desktop usage.  The interesting things Redfly brings to the table are two- both USB and Bluetooth connectivity to the smartphone and USB disks attached to Redfly appear on the smartphone for data access.  This means that once you have a Redfly dock set up with the peripherals just walking into your office will allow the smartphone to connect up for desktop usage.  You can also connect the WM phone to the Redfly via USB which should provide charging of the phone.  The dock uses the smartphone’s data and Redfly has sophisticated video compression technology to make a seamless projection of the smartphone’s screen to the dock.  I will be visiting Celio at CES to get a good look at this technology as it seems very interesting.

Today Ubergizmo is showing that Celio will be offering a laptop form a la the Foleo in addition to the dock option.  This is a self-contained solution for use as a smartphone companion to provide a mobile extension of the Windows Mobile phone.  This is pretty interesting but if the $499 price that Ubergizmo mentions is accurate Celio is going to have a hard time selling these babies.  After all you could get an EEE PC for that price.


8 Responses to “Redfly steps in where Palm feared to tread”

  1. If Redly gave me 1024×600 (at least) screen, a half-decent keyboard and the ability to use Remote Desktop (which WM6 Pro does have) then I would buy it right away. This would give me the modular approach – use my smartphone when needed, connect it to Redfly to turn it into a uber-Advantage.
    Comparison to Eee PC does not seem right to me, apples and oranges and all that. I do not nee yet another computer, but I could use a simple lighweight tool that would unlock the full potential of my pocketable device(s). Smartphones and PDAs are fantastically connected an there is some very useful software for them out there.

  2. Lukasz K

    Great point about not having any OS, RAM, CPU, etc…for $500 — ouch!

    The idea is great and very useful, and WM 5/6 does have some advantages over a full OS (i.e.: quick standby restart, battery life) but you have to give something more than just display capabilites, keyboards, and a mouse. 2 (keyboard and mouse) out of those 3 can already be paired with any bluetooth enabled phone for about $150-200. So the Other $350 is going for VGA output display? Cant see myself reaching for my wallet to buy this over the ASUS Eee if the two are sitting side by side next to each other.

    $200 sounds reasonable, $250 maybe. $300 would be big stretch (Definitely would shell out another $200 for the Asus).

    Ill have to see what else this product offers over an entirely (well) functioning pc.

  3. Lee Gray

    This seems to be a major improvement on the theories behing the Foleo. I could actually use this product, as oppossed to the Foleo.

    This also looks like a major step in the direction of Gates’ prior assertions that the cell phone/smartphone is the best hardware option for “computerizing” the world (and the third world).

    The software, if it works, would seem to allow me (and everyone else) the flexibility that I didn’t see in the Foleo.

    Interesting stuff, and I will probably try one out.

  4. turn_self_off

    brian seems to have nailed it. people are focusing to much on the “mobile companion” part.

    say you can hook the dock up to a tv and add a keyboard and mouse. presto, instant home computer for the up and coming parts of the world.

    and with 3G coverage (or even just 2.5 in a pinch) one have the option to do web anywhere.

    yes, the price is stiff for the companion. even more so as i suspect it will be able to do even less then the foleo was suspected to do on its own.

    still, its one of those things that im not sure where will go. i just hope that engadget and crew dont start gunning from the hips again…

  5. After looking it over, the primary product offered appears to be the bridge software – yes?
    Seems like a much better approach than betting the farm on a Foleo-like fixed hardware device.

    Most comments around the intratube appear to be aimed at replicating the Foleo crib-death while paying scant attention to the software.

    If the software lives up to it’s billing, who cares about any one device?

    With this approach, mobile devices may make the long anticipated cross-over to primary tool and data repository that links devices to expand functionality as needed.

    Of course, I may be ahead of the curve and/or full of crap.