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Toshiba unwraps 802.11-integrated PDAs

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UK-based ergonomic PC manufacturer Hush Technologies has announced its Mini-ITX silent PC.

Designed around VIA's EPIA mini-ITX mobo platform, the Mini-ITX PC crams hard drive, optical drive, mobo and power supply into a stylish 370 x 340 x 59 mm case that doubles up as a heat sink. Expansion is ensured through a single PCI slot.

VIA's EPIA platform is based on its Apollo CLE266 chipset and Eden processor. For more welly, buyers can choose VIA's C3 processor. Both chips are x86 compatible, allowing users to run Windows or Linux.

The Mini-ITX offers USB 2.0 and 1394 ports, 10/100Mbps Ethernet, ATA-133 support, Dolby 5.1 surround sound, and MPEG-2 decoding through an integrated graphics core in the CLE266. The machine uses either PC133 SDRAM or PC2100 DDR SDRAM.

Hush is aiming the machine at OEMs, but it is also available to individuals through online reseller mini-itx.com. Pricing and availability have yet to be announced.

PDAs

Toshiba has introduced two PDA with integrated 802.11b networking and voice over IP support.

The PocketPC e750 and e755 also contain 32MB of Flash RAM to preserve applications and data from hard resets and battery drains. Both PDAs ship with a total of 96MB of memory, which can be increased using SD and CompactFlash cards.

Built-in microphone and headphone ports allow users to connect Toshiba's optional headset for VoIP, but since this requires "additional hardware and software", we're not sure how useful it will be. Still, corporates are increasingly being turned on to VoIP - largely thanks to Cisco propaganda - and they're a key audience for Toshiba's own e750 series marketing.

The devices are based on a 400MHz Intel Xscale PXA255 processor and ship with 240x320 16-bit colour screens. Both weight 6.9oz and measure 12.3 x 7.8 x 1.5 cm.

Both cost $599. The e750 is aimed at corporate buyers, the e755 at retail markets.


Sony's Clie PDA family continues to grow. Three new members were added yesterday extending the top, middle and low ends of the range.

The high-end PEG-TG50 is Sony's second Palm OPS 5 device, running on a 200MHz Intel Xscale PXA250 processor. It's got 16MB of RAM. Like Palm's Tungsten T, the Sony device has built in Bluetooth and voice recording. Lifting the aluminium lid reveals the 320x320 16-bit colour screen and mini backlit keyboard.

A Memory Stick slot and MP3 playback completes the feature-set. Its dimensions are 71.6 x 126 x 16.2mm, and it weighs 184g. The PDA cost $399

The mid-range PEG-SJ33 Limited Edition is identical to the regular SJ33 but ships with an orange or blue case. Golly. It's yours for $299.

The $199 PEG-SJ22 has a 320x320 16-bit colour screen too. It's based on Palm OS 4.1 running on a 33MHz Motorola Dragonball VZ CPU. It contains 16MB RAM. It's 71.8 x 104 x 16.8mm and weighs 138g.

All three PDAs will be available later this month. The PEG-SJ33 Limited Edition will be only available through Sony's US Web site.

Displays

Samsung has launched what it claims is the world's first 54in TFT LCD screen. With a native resolution of 1920x1080 and a screen size of 119.5 x 67.2cm, the device is aimed at the HDTV market, but will undoubtedly find a home as a presentation system and on the wish-lists of PC users. Samsung hasn't said how much the thing will cost or when it's likely to go on sale, but mass production isn't due to commence until 2004. ®

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