The Samsung Q1 UMPC is one of the first Ultra Mobile PC devices to hit the market and I'll be leaving the laptop behind on a business trip to see if the Q1 can fulfill the role of a mobile computer in a real-life situation. While the UMPC may have lower specifications than a laptop, the ability to travel light and have a full Tablet PC in hand may be worth the tradeoffs.
The great folks at Dynamism, US importer, sent along a Samsung Q1 UMPC as part of my Geek.com review and to put it to the true test I am taking it with me today on a short business trip across the country. My MacBook Pro will be left at home as I see if the UMPC can be an option for lightweight travel. The Samsung Q1 sports a 900MHz Intel Celeron M, 512MB RAM, 7 inch WVGA (800x400 pixel) display, 40GB hard drive, 802.11 b/g, Bluetooth 2.0, CF slot, 2 USB ports, ethernet port, and stereo speakers.
An interesting feature of the Q1 is the ability to boot into Windows CE, instead of a full Windows XP, for basic multimedia needs, called AVS Multimedia. I added a movie and some podcasts to watch and listen to while on the airplane and hope that using the AVS Multimedia functionality helps conserve a bit of battery life.
I loaded up the evaluation unit with the new Office Professional 2007 Beta 2 and OneNote 2007 Beta 2 applications, along with SlingPlayer, MindManager Professional 6, Firefox, EverNote, and ritePen. After a couple days of checking out the Q1 before my trip I found that ritePen 2.5 is a better handwriting alternative compared to the integrated Tablet PC tablet input panel (TIP). When you activate the TIP the keyboard and text entry box pops up that takes up almost a third of the small display. ritePen allows you to write directly on the display without requiring a special entry box. If I want to use a keyboard to enter data I am bringing along a Think Outside Bluetooth portable keyboard and mouse.
I am taking along my Nokia E61 as my mobile phone and will use it as a modem as well when a WiFi signal is not available. Stay tuned for more on my usage of the UMPC and see if I end up spending all of my mobile device savings on a Samsung Q1.