With the upcoming Asus MyPal A730 Pocket PC and Asus MyPal A8100 Windows Mobile Smartphone, both of which will depend upon yet to be released Microsoft and Intel technologies, Asus will take a step ahead of all other PDA devices on the market in regards to feature set. Today we take an in depth look at the MyPal A730, a VGA capable PDA with built-in 1.3MP camera and a generous dose of speed, memory and wireless capabilities (pics, specs, live CeBIT coverage included).
Asus MyPal A730
Asus MyPal A730 in regular old portrait non-VGA mode
The Asus MyPal A730 is sure to turn, or better yet, spin some heads in its direction. Following are the specs that were on display alongside the A730:
Display: 3.7 inch VGA TFT LCD
Memory: 64MB Flash ROM 128/64MB SDRAM
Expansion: CompactFlash and SecureDigital (SDIO)
Processor: Asus specifically told me they had no comment on this
Operating System: Windows Mobile 2003 with Ozone update to support VGA switch and landscape mode.
Wireless: Wi-Fi 802.11b, Bluetooth, IrDA with remote control support for CE
Camera: 1.3MP CMOS camera, with flash, with video recording ability (up to 8 minutes of video supported)
Size: 73 mm x 113 mm x 16.8 mm
Weight: Less than 190g
Although Asus spokespeople didn t want to comment on the processor the device might use, look what I found in the brochure:
ASUS MyPal A730 product description
In case you can t read that graphic, here s the outtake with the Engrish (Chinese/English) spelling included
Asus is prow to introduce Asus A730 the Pocket PC which represents the perfect combination of performance and connectivity. ASUS 730 is powered with the new generation Intel 520 MHz X. An amazing VGA LCD Display for you working and multimedia application. WiFi and Bluetooth Build In ensure the maximum connectivity wherever you are. Asus A730 is slim light with a Ergonomic ID Design, and the 1.3M Pixel Camera. Business, fun, connectivity all at the maximum level
All I can say is, at bargainPDA, we re prow of the effort ASUS is putting into this device! Looks like the cat just jumped out of the bag on the Intel XScale 520 MHz processor.
In talking to ASUS I found out their goal is to release this device at the end of April, but due to tight timelines with testing and other product dependencies, it could get pushed into May. They will quickly get out a Bluetooth integrated unit and put off the Wi-Fi integrated unit for a month or so. According to Asus, getting a Bluetooth integrated device past FCC and other government board approvals is much faster than Wi-Fi. And we all know that speed to market with new technologies is the best way to generate more sales (although some will twiddle their thumbs and angst over whether to buy immediately without Wi-Fi or wait, a tough call).
A look at the back of the Asus A730 reveals the 1.3 MegaPixel camera
Another impressive aspect of the A730 is the 1.3MP camera with built-in flash. In addition to that, the camera will support video recording.
The Asus MyPal A730 in VGA mode, the screen is aligned in landscape mode for wider viewing perspective — switching to VGA will be built into the new Windows Ozone update.
But what good is a decent camera if you don t have a good screen to support viewing your pictures? Asus took care of that by providing a 3.7 TFT LCD screen with VGA mode capabilities. And thanks to the upcoming Microsoft Windows Mobile 2003 Ozone update, built-in switching to VGA mode will be supported within the OS and all Microsoft applications such as Pocket Word, Pocket Excel and Windows Media will be supported. Although Asus had said there s been a few issues with the Media Player VGA support, hopefully Microsoft irons that out.
The ASUS MyPal 730 will be released at the $599 (US) price point worldwide and be available for purchase from Asus and their current retail channels (such as www.proportable.com). I would challenge Asustek to try and get mass distribution through largerl U.S. retailers such as BestBuy, CircuitCity, Amazon.com or Fry s Electronics but there s nothing like that worked out yet so get in line when and where you can, this ll be hot!