Toshiba Storage Device Division makes what is currently the world’s smallest hard disk drive. Its 0.85-inch miniature HDD will even be in the next Guinness Book of World Records.
In order to inspire designers and manufacturers of the next generation of mobile devices, Toshiba has come up with some concept devices that include its tiny hard drive. Mockups of these are on display in Toshiba’s booth at the CeBIT tradeshow.
The design that has garnered the most attention is a Wristwatch PDA. This device will offer all the features of a high-end handheld, including video conferencing, but in a unit that fits on one’s wrist.
If it is ever built, this concept model would include both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Data input would be handled with voice recognition.
No direct mention was made of what operating system this device would run, but the images shown are clearly from the Palm OS. This despite the fact that Toshiba isn’t currently a Palm OS licensee, and makes a line of Pocket PCs.
Other Concept Devices
Toshiba is also proposing the Digital Wallet/Data Key. This will allow location based m-commerce and electronic purchasing via all major credit cards. It will also store the user’s address book, schedule, medical, and passport information. Because this information is so valuable, it will be protected by biometric security. In addition, it can act as a key for home, office, and car.
Another concept device handheld users might find interesting is a pair of Intelligent Spectacles. A wireless connection allows the user to browse the Web or read email on a near-eye display. Menu items and text would be selected just by focusing one’s eyes on the desired object on the screen.
Of course, these are simply ideas for devices that might be built someday, not anything Toshiba is planning to release in the near future.
These concept devices are on display in Toshiba’s “Innovation Corner” at CeBIT. This also where the company is showing off creations that are much closer to hitting the market, like its OLED screens and fuel cells.