NVIDIA's Tegra 2 isn't just to be found in HD-capable mediaplayers; it's also going to spearhead the company's push into the smartbook segment. The Mobinnova Beam was perhaps the most eye-catching smartbook around back when the platform was announced in June 2009, and we stopped by NVIDIA's stand to try out the latest version. Check out our hands-on video after the cut.
Remember Mobinnova's élan Smartbook from Computex earlier this year? The 8.9-inch ultraportable promised HD video playback and hours of battery life, thanks to its NVIDIA Tegra chipset; now Mobinnova are back, with the élan rebanded as the Beam, and promising a launch for the compact machine at CES in January 2010. According to LaptopMag's interview, the Beam will be offered with a carrier subsidy, though the company are keeping quiet on exactly which US network they're in bed with.
An NVIDIA executive has confirmed that the company is working with Google to produce Tegra-based Smartbooks running Google Chrome OS. Talking to jkOnTheRun's Kevin C. Tofel, NVIDIA's GM of mobile business Mike Rayfield revealed that the company expects to see Tegra-based smartphones using Windows Mobile and Android, while Smartbooks or netbooks would use Chrome OS or Windows CE.
The nice thing about Android is that, because it's open-source, you get strange handset designs springing up all over. One such example is Vobis Computer's HIGHSCREEN PP5420, a dual-touchscreen smartphone based on the Mobinnova Ice. Vobis have thrown out the Ice's Windows Mobile OS and replaced it with Android 1.5 Cupcake; you - or should I say Russia, seeing as though that's where the PP5420 will launch next week - get dualband 900/2100MHz HSPA, WiFi b/g and GPS.
The main display is a 3-inch WQVGA panel, while underneath it there's a smaller 1.15-inch 128 x 96 OLED navigation pad. A 3-megapixel autofocus camera lurks around the back, with a VGA version up front for video calls, while there's also TV-output, a mini USB connector and microSD card slot.
After yesterday's hardware demo we were promised a video of the Mobinnova élan Smartbook's software, and here it is. One of the most interesting devices to be debuted at Computex, the élan is based on NVIDIA's Tegra chipset and can play six hours of 1080p video on a single charge.
We've been quietly crushing on the Mobinnova élan Smartbook since its Computex debut, and this preview video from NetbookNews does little to dissuade that feeling. Based on NVIDIA's Tegra chipset, the promise is both high-definition support and up to 24hrs of audio playback from the super-frugal platform.
Mobinnova have announced one of the first NVIDIA Tegra-based smartbook/netbook/shrunken-laptops at Computex, the élan. With an 8.9-inch display capable of playing back 720p video, the élan weighs just 1.84lbs and measures a mere 0.8-inches thick, but still manages to pack in 3G and WiFi, 5-10 hours of continuous HD video playback or up to 24 days of audio playback (assuming the screen is turned off).