Earlier this year, Hagiwara Sys-Com made headlines by announcing it was developing the first Wi-Fi card that will use the Memory Stick format. Though somewhat delayed, this peripheral will be available soon.
When Hagiwara Sys-Com first announced the HNT-MSW1 Memory Stick Wireless LAN card, the company said it will be available during the third quarter of this year. Today, a company representative said it wouldn’t make this deadline, but the device should be available in about a month.
An Overview of Wi-Fi Memory Stick
The HNT-MSW1 Memory Stick Wireless LAN card will use the 802.11b standard. It be able to transmit up to 11 Mbps at a range of 120 feet. However, it uses a 1-bit bus speed when transferring data to the handheld, which will keep it far below the theoretical 11 Mbps.
Wi-Fi cards in general use quite a bit of power and the HNT-MSW1 is no exception. It will use 300 mA when sending, 250 mA when receiving, and 20 mA in standby.
The bad news is the company said it will only be available for Palm OS 5 devices, which eliminates many of the potential consumers. Most of Sony’s Palm OS 5 devices either have a slot that allows them to use a CompactFlash Wi-Fi card already or have integrated Wi-Fi. However, all Clies with OS 4 have no option for Wi-Fi.
Hagiwara Sys-Com hasn’t released exact dimensions for this card but clearly a sizable piece will extend beyond the confines of the Memory Stick slot.
At this point, this is the only company to have announced plans to make a Wi-Fi Memory Stick.
Hagiwara Sys-Com has not announced what this card will cost.
When the Wi-Fi Memory Stick was announced, the company also said it was working on a Bluetooth Memory Stick, plus Wi-Fi and Bluetooth SD cards. The Hagiwara Sys-Com representative was unable to say when any of these would be released.