Intel Classmate PC Convertible and other Intel based mobile devices at the CES
Intel didn't reveal any new processors at the CES, but instead devices based on Intel's Atom were on display in Las Vegas.
The Intel Classmate PC is intended to provide children in developing countries with a computer for educational purposes. Intel doesn't produce the devices, but supplies OEMs with the platform. At the IDF Intel introduced the Classmate PC Convertible, which has a touchscreen and a Atom processor. At the CES we had the chance to take a closer look at the robust notebook.
Intel utilizes an Atom N270 with 1.6 GHz and an 8.9 inch display with a resolution of 1,024 x 600 pixels for the Convertible. Depending on the version the devices is equipped with 512 or 1,024 MiByte RAM. The used hard drive depends on the manufacturer, but WLAN is integrated of course.
The touchscreen reacts to firm input only. Thus the hand can be placed on the display for a more comfortable writing position. To write, one can use the stylus - which can be stored in the devices - or a fingernail. The image of the touchscreen is rotated automatically depending on how the Classmate PC Convertible is placed. The Notebook is able, like Apple's Iphone, to check its orientation.
Text recognition worked fine during our short test. The system we had access to, was running Windows XP. If the touchscreen is flipped, bigger and buttons, which make working easier, are displayed. Reading pdf files is quite comfortable. The Classmate PC Convertible is supposed to make learning easier and to reduce the weight pupils have to carry. The first impression is quite positive and the performance is big enough to work with. The battery is said to last between 3 to 8 hours depending on the used model.
On the US market the Convertible is currently listed at M&A Technology for 499.99 US-Dollars.
Besides the Classmate PC Convertible there had been other mobile devices on display at the Intel booth. The OQO model 2+ is quite small but is nevertheless equipped with an Atom CPU, 2 GiByte RAM and a hard drive that has a capacity above 60 GByte. The 5 inch display has a resolution of 800 x 450 pixels. But the estimated price of 1,450 US-Dollars is rather high.
Also on display and ready to use was a racing simulator worth 45,000 US-Dollars. Visitors could drive two laps at the virtual Monza of the game Rfactor. A Kit of the Japanese simulation specialist Frex made the drivers feel every bump of the track.