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Dell's PC-on-a-stick landing in July: report

Wyse up, suckers, could this be a new set-side-stick?

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Dell's project Ophelia, an Android-PC-on-a-stick effort revealed at CES last January, is apparently set to debut in July.

PC World brings us news that Dell will bring the product to the world in a few short weeks at around $US100.

The idea behind the device is to offer user a very lightweight client device that users can chuck in their pockets and use wherever a screen with a spare HDMI plug awaits. Ophelia will then use WiFi to connect to the world so its users can get on with some computing.

Such devices are not novel: as we noted when Ophelia debuted, thirty seconds on eBay will suffice to rustle up dozens of similar devices. Dell seems to be betting that the injection of Wyse's thin client management-ware will kick the concept upstairs, from where it will trickle down into the hands of users eager to replace a cheap, slow, PC with an even cheaper, slower, PC substitute.

Whether enterprises will get excited about very, very, small thin clients is contestable, given enterprises haven't ever become terribly excited about any thin clients.

The PC World report suggests telcos are mentioned as another target, as apparently an Ophelia could be tempting to their subscribers.

Vuture South imagines that market could be encouraged to press the device into service as , if you'll allow us to coin a new term, a “set-side stick”. Android could certainly be configured to work on a big screen and is much more malleable than the development environments on many personal video recorders, which would mean telcos could offer things like multiplayer gaming. If Ophelia's WiFi is of the 802.11n variety streaming video through it into a telly won't be an overly taxing task, which could mean a nice chance for telcos to send their customers video. Either application gets telcos into average-revenue-per-user-boosting territory they crave after seeing app stores and the likes of Netflix reduce them to dumb pipes.

Such speculation founders in the absence of detail on the inputs Ophelia will allow. Dell told PC World it's done something keyboardy and clever to make it more attractive. We await definitive news with interest. ®

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