A few years ago I was doing some work for Sun Microsystems, something to do with wireless, mobility and all that. One day I was in London, near Westminster and I had one of those “a-ha!” moments. I distinctly remember popping into Macdonalds in the old city hall, opening my pad and drawing what I considered to be “my perfect handheld”.
Earlier today I found the piece of paper lurking in some old files. Here it is:
For the past few months I’ve been road testing the QTek 9100 (linking to where I nicked the picture, thanks). Here it is – looks awfully similar, hein?
So the question is – now I have it, how does it stack up? I’d love to say it has achieved handheld perfection, but it doesn’t, quite. There are a number of reasons:
– It is sloooow – only a 200MHz processor for all that voice and data gubbins, it just doesn’t cut it. It is usable, however it isn’t what I would call slick. There is a Skype client but that runs like an absolute dog which is a shame, as teh dev ice could almost pay for itself based on a few months’ Skypeout.
– the screen is too small. I need a screen I can comfortably cut and paste sections of documents on, and while the resolution is great, the screen itself is not quite there. Not really an e-books client at this point.
– it is buggy – sometimes the email client crashes for no apparent reason (sorry Microsoft, but I would have thought you’d cracked email by now).
– its too thick. Nuff said.
Apart from that, it does a pretty good job. Its got some features I didn’t specify – note the absence of Wifi on my picture for example, which dates it somewhat! It achieves my personal goal of a single device which could (potentially) be used for everything I do, I’m a bit of a laptop junkie these days so I’m not sure that’ll ever be necessary, but anyway.
No, its not perfect, but it is getting pretty close.