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OQO Model 01 handheld PC

Compact wonder?

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Review There's no denying that the OQO Model 01 is one of the coolest devices that I've ever got my paws on. It is an amazingly compact yet fully featured PC, in a very similar vein to the Sony Vaio U series. However, there are some obvious advantages that the Model 01 has over the U70P. Top of that list has to be size: the Sony was pretty close to pocket size, but the Model 01 really is. I've been carrying the Model 01 around with me for the past couple of weeks and it fits snugly into my back pocket, writes Riyad Emeran.

OQO Model 01The second major advantage that the Model 01 has over the U70P is input method. Whereas the Sony machine relies on handwriting recognition or a virtual keyboard, the model 01 has a full QWERTY keyboard complete with numeric keypad. The great thing about this is that the screen completely hides it when it's not in use, so you can use the Model 01 pretty much like a tablet PC if you prefer. The downside is that the keys are tiny, so you need to have very small and dexterous fingers to make the most of it.

Nestling between the keyboard and numeric pad is a trackpoint which works remarkably well. The two selector buttons to the left of the keyboard also fall nicely under your thumb for easy access. Pointer movement reminds me of the old Toshiba Libretto - a device that the Japanese giant has recently resurrected. But you don't have to use the trackpoint for navigation as the Model 01 also has a stylus hidden in the top edge. This is the type of stylus that you get with a tablet PC so you can move the pointer around the screen without actually touching the display - tapping the screen acts like a left mouse-button click, while a small button on the shaft of the stylus simulates a right click. There's no doubt that OQO has thought long and hard about the user experience and has tried to offer as much flexibility as possible.

I doubt that too many people would want to write a long document on the Model 01 using the internal input devices, but it's good to know that it's possible. If you're using the Model 01 at home or in your office you can simply plug in a USB keyboard, mouse and monitor, and it will function just like any other PC. Even when you're on the move you can use a portable USB keyboard or even a Bluetooth device.

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