News of Dell’s plans to enter the handheld market has been leaking out over the past several months and though the company is still more than a week away from the official release, essentially complete information on the company’s new Axim X5 line of Pocket PCs is now available, especially Dell gave CNet a full preview of the devices. infoSync has some additional information.
This information confirms just about all the earlier rumors. Dell will release two models that differ in processor speed, memory, and, of course, price.
One model will have a 300 MHz XScale processor, 32MB of RAM, 32MB of ROM, and will sell for $249 which will drop to $199 after a $50 mail-in rebate. This model will ship with a synchronization cable, not a cradle.
The other will have a 400MHz XScale chip, 64MB of RAM, 48MB of ROM, and will be priced at $349 plus a $50 mail in rebate, dropping it to $299. It will come with a full cradle.
Other than these differences, these two models will essentially be identical. They are not light and slim devices, as are some other Pocket PC models being released this season. Both will be 5.0 by 3.2 by 0.7 inches and weigh 6.9 ounces. Both have D-pads on the front and jog wheels on their left sides.
They will have 65,000-color, transflective screens measuring 3.5 inches diagonally and will be the standard 320 by 240 pixels.
Both will have CompactFlash Type II and SD/MMC card slots. In addition, they will use 1440 mAh Lithium ion removable batteries, and a 3400 mAh battery will be sold separately. The cradle will be able recharge a second battery.
Dell has already said the official launch will be at Comdex on November 18 and they will be available several days after that. It will, of course, offer these on its website but people will also be able to order them from in kiosks in malls during this holiday season. Those ordering from the kiosks will receive their handhelds in the mail.
According to Anthony Bonadero, director of worldwide mobile products for Dell, his company will release more new models in January of 2003. He also said his company plans to release a color model some time next year that will be less than $150.
In addition, Dell intends to release in 2003 handhelds with built-in Bluetooth and 802.11b wireless networking.