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Start-up touts x86, Wi-Fi as mobile gaming future

All about Eve

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Mobile gaming specialist Ministry of Mobile Affairs (Moma) last week launched its bid for a place alongside Sony's PlayStation Portable and Nintendo's DS with a stylish x86-based handheld that plays old PC games.

Dubbed 'Eve', the unit looks like one of those old 1980s-era single-game devices redesigned by Apple for the 21st Century. Eve looks mobile but not exactly something that would slip into a pocket. What the pics don't show, however, is the way Eve's screen slides out of the controller unit, which the company claims allows true portable gaming.

Ministry of Mobile Affairs' Eve

Eve also provides Wi-Fi for multi-player WLAN bouts and for mobile Internet access. The unit runs the embedded version of Windows XP, so the unit should essentially function like a PC - the experience should be not unlike the one offer by Bsquare's more business-oriented Power Handheld (see our review).

Eve will sport a 4in, 640 x 480 LCD. The system's processor spec. is known, however. Eve is based on a 533MHz VIA Eden CPU; a VIA CN400 chipset, which provides 266MHz DDR SDRAM support and the company's six-channel audio sub-system, Vinyl; and a VIA 200MHz S3 UniChrome Pro integrated graphics core that yields a 200m pixel per second fill rate, with two textures per pixel, and a triangle fill rate of 4.5m polygons per second.

The graphics core uses shared system memory, of which there will be 128MB. Eve also contains a 20GB hard drive. In addition to 802.11b, the unit offers TV-out, two USB 2.0 ports and a CompactFlash slot for I/O.

Gamers will be able to transfer titles to Eve using the GameDweller On-Demand online service, Moma said. Eve owners may also be able to copy over their own PC game libraries via the USB link and Microsoft's ActiveSync, though Moma has not said officially that this option will be available to console owners. Moma's 'games on demand' approach mirrors the one adopted by fellow console developer Infinium, which last week said it would ship its Phantom hardware and online service in November. Eve's own launch date and pricing have yet to be set. ®

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