Tuesday, January 10, 2006

CES: daydreaming about the ideal road warrior's gadget

The final goal is in sight: the ultimate urban nomad's companion. This week's CES reveals three trends that will contribute to the road warrior's ideal:

1. The flexible screen. PlasticLogic announced an E Ink screen in 10" size. That's close to the on-the-road ideal, lightweight and rollable, and uses very little energy.
2. 'Core' notebook processors. Intel announced Yonah, its newest generation of single ("Solo") and dual core ("Duo") notebook processors. Not only are these more energy-friendly - they also provide plenty of scope to build more roadworthy functionality into future processor cores.
3. Instant startup. The last barrier: the endless wait until your laptop has started up. Main raison d'ĂȘtre for using PDAs and smartphones, despite their pathetic little screens. Bill Gates showed the SideShow feature as part of his Vista demo, enabling the user to access contacts, to-do lists, and calendar without having to start the PC. Toshiba has Express Mediaplayer, a similar feature for playing media on its Qosmio notebooks and announced EM's rollout to 80% of its high end notebooks. And HP announced new notebooks with QuickPlay, a similar feature.

Rollable displays with Yonah Duos in the rim, and QuickStart features. Who's going to invent the lightweight mini battery?

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