The OQO: Gadget Lust

Posted on Sunday 18 December 2005

So I was in Manhattan this afternoon doing a little last minute Christmas shopping and I stumbled upon the Wired Store – thinking there may be some geeky goodness to be seen I stepped inside. Most of the stuff they had was pretty unexciting – laptops, iPods, iPod speakers, cell phones – you get the idea. One step above The Sharper Image to be sure, but also considerably more expensive. They did have a Sonos system set up though, so I had a quick play to see what all the fuss was about. Not bad, but I’m still happy with my Squeezeboxen.
Anyway, I was about to leave when I spotted something familiar sitting on a shelf – it was the OQO. What’s an OQO you ask? It’s a full featured Windows PC in a unit the size of a postcard. Yes, a postcard. Really. With a 1GHz processor, 30GB hard disk, 512MB memory, WiFi, Bluetooth, USB2 and an 800×480 screen.

OQO Model 1

I’ve drooled over these on the web, now I could see it in real life. First impressions were good – the screen is amazing, really hi res and very clear. The wireless networking was working and I quickly pulled up the world’s best website to check it out – rendered perfectly on the standard IE6 browser included (I wonder if you can get Firefox on that thing?). The case is metal which feels much better in the hand than the usual plastic, and the whole thing has an extremely sexy design. You can’t see it in the photo above, but there’s a keyboard which slides out from behind the screen if you need to type something. It was thicker that I expected (probably around an inch) and surprisingly heavy, but the overall impression I got was of a very well designed and engineered piece of kit. If anyone has a spare $2000 and wants to buy me a present – you know where to look!

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