First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

Summary: It has been quite a while since HP announced the new iPAQ 900 series back in September 2007 and I was beginning to wonder if the device would end up being vaporware. I was just sent an evaluation HP iPAQ 910 device to check out for a couple of weeks and it looks like the device is getting closer and closer to actually shipping. The iPAQ 910 is currently listed on the HP site for US$499.99 with a red label stating it is coming soon. I posted some product photos in my image gallery and have some initial thoughts and a walk around the device below.

SHARE:

It has been quite a while since HP announced the new iPAQ 900 series back in September 2007 and I was beginning to wonder if the device would end up being vaporware. I was just sent an evaluation HP iPAQ 910 device to check out for a couple of weeks and it looks like the device is getting closer and closer to actually shipping. The iPAQ 910 is currently listed on the HP site for US$499.99 with a red label stating it is coming soon. I posted some product photos in my image gallery and have some initial thoughts and a walk around the device below.


 Image Gallery:Check out some product photos of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager. Image Gallery: iPAQ 910 retail box Image Gallery: HP iPAQ 910 

In the box: The HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager comes in a compact and attractive retail box. The evaluation unit I was sent does not include the manuals or CD, but the retail box contents are listed on the side of the box. The contents include the iPAQ 910, 1940 mAh battery, USB sync cable, A/C adapter, wired stereo headset, and Getting Started CD and manual/brochure.

Specs: It looks like the original 520 MHz processor announced back in September has been replaced in the actual release device with a 416 MHz processor, but the rest of the specs from the original announcement look to be the same and include:

  • Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional
  • Marvell PXA270 416 MHz processor
  • 256MB ROM (about 120MB available to the user)
  • 128MB RAM (about 62MB available to the user)
  • 2.46 inch 320x240 touch screen
  • Integrated 802.11 b/g WiFi radio
  • Integrated Bluetooth 2.0 radio with EDR
  • Integrated GPS receiver
  • Quad-band GSM/EDGE radio and tri-band UMTS/HSDPA radio (speeds of up to 7.2 Mbps)
  • 1940 mAh Lithium ion battery
  • microSD card slot
  • 3 megapixel camera with 4x digital zoom
  • Weight of 5.4 ounces
  • Size of 4.5 inches x 2.5 inches x 0.6 inch

HP also includes some software utilities on top of Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional, including HP iPAQ GPS, HP PrintSmart, Sun Java, HP Asset Viewer, Ringtones manager, HP audio utility, and HP iPAQ DataConnect utility.

Initial thoughts and experiences: The device feels good in my hand due to the solid construction and soft touch backing. It feels much like a BlackBerry Curve that measures 4.2 inches x 2.4 inches x 0.6 inch (see how close that is to the above listed size), but is an ounce and a half heavier and feels more dense.

The display is nice and bright, but I have been spoiled by the VGA display on the HTC Touch Diamond and am not sure I can go back to a QVGA display. ClearType does make the fonts look much better and I recommend you enable this in the settings.

So far the device feels pretty snappy and responsive. I was able to get a GPS fix with Google Maps (included in the ROM) in less than a minute while sitting in my house about 6 feet from a window.

Browsing is OK with Internet Explorer Mobile, but I would have preferred to have seen Opera Mobile installed on the device and will try out Opera Mini 4.1 soon. The Java Gmail application works very well and looks good on the landscape display.

I am looking forward to trying out the scroll wheel since there are very few Windows Mobile devices with such a controller and I think it can be very handy for ebook reading and browsing.

I will be spending another couple weeks with the device and if you have any specific questions regarding the device, please feel free to post them and I'll try to answer them in my follow-up post.

Topics: Operating Systems, Hardware, Hewlett-Packard, Mobility, Software, Windows

Kick off your day with ZDNet's daily email newsletter. It's the freshest tech news and opinion, served hot. Get it.

Talkback

10 comments
Log in or register to join the discussion
  • questions on the 910

    Look forward to your review of the 910.
    I have the ff questions. I asked HP
    some of these questions and they haven't
    goten back to me.

    1. Does the Micro SD slot support SDHC?

    2. I have the prior version of this (hw6915) and
    it had some very annoying issues. Just wondering
    if HP has addressed them:

    - if you remove or insert the SIM card, the iPaq reboots
    - if you remove or insert the SIM card, the iPaq
    doesn't turn on unless you plug in the adapter or
    insert a fully charged battery
    - device really slows down when you add several programs
    - no program kill function (the original iPaqs
    had this)
    - if you remove and insert the battery, you need plug in the AC adapter for the iPaq to wake up
    - the on/off switch accidentally turns on too easily (unlike with a Palm PDA), there's no HOLD switch
    - file store nonvolative flash memory is too small to be really useful (good thing Win Mobile 5 allowed installing to the external memory card)
    - When Bluetooth is on, other devices can see the iPaq but it can't see them

    3. Can you try tethering this to a laptop, maybe
    using the new Internet Sharing function and
    Bluetooth?

    4. Can you try item 3 above using the USB cable?

    5. Is the DC in connector on the iPaq different from the USB connector?


    Thank you.
    rosanlo
  • RE: First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

    Thanks for the review Matthew. I'm considering picking up one of these.

    I'm currently using a Blackjack II and fairly happy with it. I noticed you included a side-by-side shot of the 910 with the BJII. I was wondering how their thickness compared. Any chance you could add a shot showing that, or comment on this aspect? I think the specs say 2-3mm difference, but that's hard to judge.

    Thanks!

    Mark
    popcorn-in-sac
  • RE: First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

    After many months, I gave up waiting to buy the HP iPaq 910, touted by various HP sources from autumn 2007 as "arriving soon" ...incidentally why is this SO delayed?

    Is there much difference from the HTC TyTN II (which I bought last autumn) apart from the on-face keyboard? It seems - rather surprisingly - HP's latest offering has old specs.. Is the chip downgrading a slower offering? How does this compare with TyTNII's performance, as an example?

    Thanks,

    N.
    DNW
  • RE: First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

    Matt,

    How would you compare this device to the Blackjack II? The only difference that I see is the WiFi connection. Additionally, you said that it is Windows Mobile Professional but it looks like it does not have a touch screen so how does that work? I thought that without a touch screen it would be Windows Mobile Standard.

    Dick
    rheuser@...
  • what's new with the 910 (vs hw6915)

    As mentioned in an earlier post, the 910 is thean updated version of the hw6900 series (hw6915 I have is a European unlocked version, the American hw6915 is a locked Cingular product). The hw6900 had several versions, some
    without camera.

    You can use this feature list to runa comparo with other Windows Mobile 6.1 smartphomes.

    What is and isn't new with the 910 vs hw6900:

    - form factors appear similar

    - looks to still be the widest smartphones with keybord below the screen. Wider than Blackberry Curve.

    - in phone mode, you can either use the touch screen or the numeric keypad to dial. No need to slide out a recessed/hidden keyboard.

    - IMHO the hw6900 has the best key spacing among all front QWERTY keyboard phones. Tactile feedback was also excellent, as was
    the backlighting and travel of the keys.

    - CPU remains the same, 400+ MHz from Marvell (which bought the StrongARM operations of Intel)

    - RAM and ROM are somewhat of a mystery to me as far as their usage and usefulness, so I will omit them here. As far as I'm concerned, they don't really matter much as with Windows Mobile 5, one could install programs to the digital media card. Unless you are storing really large files, the 2 GB limit of miniSD cards of the hw6900 (and similar limitfor microSD for the 910, if the 910 doesn't support microSDHC) may be sufficient. If the 910 supports microSDHC, chances are it will support the full 32 GB capacity of the microSDHC specification.

    - 910 operating system Windows Mobile 6.1 Professional vs. Windows Mobile 5 for hw6900

    - 910 has HSDPA/UMTS/EDGE/GPRS, hw6900 only had EDGE/GPRS.

    - Battery has been boosted to 1900 mAh on 910 vs. pathetic 1200 mAh on hw6900 (although aftermarket batteries up to 2500 mAh are available for hw6900, along with replacement rear battery compartment cover, adding about 0.125" to thickness, although aftermarket covers have poor fit). However, original HP
    battery cover also fit poorly.

    - Unlike carrier cell phones which rely on the carrier's servers to provide GPS, HP embedded a real GPS receiver in the hw6915. I installed iGuidance 3.0 (DVD came with versions for PC, UMPC, Windows Mobile).

    - Bluetooth 2.0 EDR for 910 vs. 1.x for hw6900

    - Wifi adds WPA security in 910 which hw6900 lacked

    - hw6900 screen had LED backlight, which was new at the time of hw6900 intro (which I assume is carried over into 910)

    - 910 screen is 4:3 at 320 x 240 vs. square 240 x 240 screen of hw6900

    - 910 screen is touchscreen, as was hw6900

    - built-in camera resolution increased to 3 megapixel from 1.3 megapixel, but no optical zoom, can capture video and store on removable digital media card (microSD for 910, miniSD for hw6900)

    - removable digital media card (microSD for 910, not known if this supports microSDHC, miniSD for hw6900)

    - non volatile flash memory storage (HP calls this file store), miniscule on hw6900, its imprtance has markedly diminished with the use of the microSD (910) or mini SD (hw6900) card.

    - HP includes Google Maps with 910, and TomTom Navigator (only 1 map free for Tom Tom) in the hw6900

    - HP included Photosmart image editing software with the hw6900

    Below are applications I've installed on the hw6900. I don't recommend you install all of them as they will make the iPaq run really really slowly

    - Skype VoIP software
    - iGuidance GPS software
    - Opera Mobile browser
    - MobileDB cross-platform (Palm, Pocket PC, Windows) database
    - TCPMP (The Core Pocket Media Player), plays MPEG-4, Divx, MPEG-1 videos, mp3 audio
    - Pocket Music, plays mp3s
    - Text Speech Pro, TTS (text-to-speech)
    - Worldmate free version, travelers' aid software

    .............
    rosanlo
    • Windows Mobile 6 supports microSDHC cards

      It appears that Windows Mobile 6 supports microSDHC cards, so the iPaq 910 should support microSD cards
      up to 2 GB (4 GB are problematic as they are typically
      non-standard microSD cards), and microSDHC cards up to
      32 GB.

      (The difference between microSD and microSDHC is formatting, probably akin to the difference between FAT16 and FAT32, so theoretically, older operating systems could be patched to support SDHC or microSDHC. Another advantage of Windows Mobile 6 is that updates can be delivered directly by Microsoft, so one wouldn't have to wait for the carrier to make the update available, which could take a very long time or might never happen should the carrier choose not to deliver the update.)

      Now if I can only find a reasonably priced and available 16 GB microSDHC card.
      rosanlo
  • RE: First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

    I would have preferred to have the Google stuff installed in RAM or better yet, only included on the CD so that it could either not be used, or removed at the user's discretion. As it is, the crapware (I know some people love the Google garbage, but after all it is garbage).
    jfreedle2@...
  • RE: First impressions of the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager

    HP is telling me that the HP iPAQ 910 Business Manager "should" work on the Sprint network... please confirm before I make this purchase.

    Thank you,

    Michael
    passas
    • GSM device, no Sprint or Verizon compatability

      Unless HP makes a CDMA version of this device, it is primarily designed for AT&T here in the U.S. It will work fine with T-Mobile as well, but it will not support T-Mobile's 3G data network so you will be stuck with EDGE if you have a T-Mobile SIM card in the slot.

      Currently, the device will not work with Sprint or Verizon here in the U.S.
      palmsolo (aka Matthew Miller)
  • Phone Unlocked?

    Would you know if this phone is unlocked (ie. If I go to another country I can just buy a prepaid sim card and use it)?
    tliem