Print 9 comment(s) - last by Schadenfroh.. on Mar 16 at 8:20 PM

Asus T83 UMPC -- image courtesy Engadget
Asus shows off its T83 UMPC at CeBIT 2007

Asus is no stranger to the UMPC game. The company launched its R2H last year with a price tag under $1,000 USD. The R2H features a 900MHz Celeron M ULV processor, 768MB of DDR2 memory, 7" (800x480) LCD, 60GB hard drive, Bluetooth 2.0+EDR, WiFi and GPS capabilities.

But seeing as how the tech industry doesn't stand still, Asus has seen fit to introduce a second generation UMPC to replace its R2H according to Engadget. The T83 unfortunately doesn't offer much in the term of performance upgrades, but does offer a few functional improvements.

The LCD is still 7” with a resolution of 800x480, HDD size has dropped to 30GB and the memory was cut by 256MB to 512MB. On the processor side of things, the 900MHz Celeron M ULV processor was replaced by a 1GHz Via C7-M processor. And despite the feature cuts, the T83 has managed to jump in weight from 1.83 pounds to 2.1 pounds.

Asus has, however, added a swiveling LCD housing to the mix along with a traditional (albeit small) QWERTY keyboard complete with trackpoint and two mouse buttons. Battery life has also been increased from a paltry 2 hours on the R2H to 6 hours with the T83.

The Asus T83 may be a hard sell, however, in light of the recent reveal of the Samsung Q1 Ultra. That 1.5 pound UMPC sports a split-QWERTY keyboard, 7" (1024x600) display, 800MHz Core 2 processor, 1GB of memory, 60GB hard drive, dual cameras, HSDPA and WiBRO.

The Asus T83 has a price advantage though as it is expected to retail for $900 USD to $1,000 USD while the Samsung Q1 Ultra is expected to come in at around $1,200 USD.

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By Quiksel on 3/16/2007 8:49:16 AM , Rating: 2
It's amazing how lame the Asus looks compared to that new Samsung. I can't even believe they switched procs to save power, etc., but still couldn't figure out how to make it weigh less. I can't see this unit selling much.

Tablet functionality should be left up to the.... TabletPC's! Nice idea, but the size of the keyboard being so small practically negates the benefit.

Chalk this one under the "oops, we should have released this thing a year ago" category. Or maybe even the "oops, if we release this thing it's gonna flop, so let's just can the project while we're still ahead" category.

RE: yikes
By Hypernova on 3/16/2007 9:32:15 AM , Rating: 2
Ditto, if I want an ultra portable I would buy an ultra portable. Not this has assed crap. This is a giant step backward from the purpose of UMPC's. The dev team probably had the battery life in top priority and butchered everything else to achieve the goal.

Is that guys hand really small
By osalcido on 3/16/2007 1:03:33 PM , Rating: 2
or is this thing really big? I've seen compact notebooks that are that size in my hand

RE: Is that guys hand really small
By tronsr71 on 3/16/2007 6:39:27 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. From the enlarged picture, the lcd is 322.6 pixels from corner to corner, and the width of the umpc is 405.1 pixels.

Therefore the width of this device is roughly 8.8 inches!! To me this product appears to be in a relatively gray area when you have small laptops available with screen widths of less than 10 and a half inches.

Just check out this Fujitsu

or this Averatec

I love it but.
By Mitch101 on 3/16/2007 8:52:27 AM , Rating: 2
It will fail.

Its almost like a smaller version of the OLPC machine with higher end components at 12x the price.

Or a smaller version of a laptop at more than 2x the price with a barely usable screen.

Cool but very limited market that I would scrap the idea before they lose a lot of money on it.

By therealnickdanger on 3/16/2007 11:04:05 AM , Rating: 2
Sony appears to be the only company doing UMPCs right - at least in terms of size and functionality, which is the point of UMPCs, right?

These things are awesome to play with...

By Spartan Niner on 3/16/2007 11:05:55 AM , Rating: 2
Although some would argue they have different markets, I believe ultraportable laptops in the 2-4 lb. range have the distinct advantage in actual utility. Not only is battery life, useability, and price/perf much better than these UMPCs, people older than a child can actually type on the keyboards. I can also see some higher-end PDAs and smartphones taking away some of the potential market as well. The UMPC is simply another (expensive) addition to a saturated market for ultra-portable computing.

i like it.
By R3MF on 3/16/2007 11:15:39 AM , Rating: 2
most ultra-portable laptops (11.1" or less) cost around £1,000 or more.

$1000 dollars probably translates to £600 for a real PC with real PC functionality, that can really fit in in a large pocket.

even better, it has a real keyboard, so it really can be used just like a real PC.

good move.

By Schadenfroh on 3/16/2007 8:20:21 PM , Rating: 2
Is it just where I live or are these things not that popular? I mean I see many articles about companies launching UMPCs, but I have never seen anyone in public with a UMPC, BlackBerrys / palm pilots yeh, but no UMPCs.

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