You’ve got to hand it to iRiver, they pump out some fantastic industrial design. Latest to prompt a small puddle of drool around my keyboard is the Wing, a flash-based clamshell UMPC with 4-inch touchscreen and full QWERTY keyboard. iRiver’s press release has it down as running embedded Linux Kernel 2.6, which is strange because some are reporting it to be a WinCE Pro machine; assuming the details from the horse’s mouth are correct, the 4GB of memory (and SD expansion) should be plenty for some compact Linux apps.
iRiver preload the Wing with a browser, IM client, widget and SMS/MMS support, as well as a VoIP and video conferencing app which takes advantage of the device’s dual cameras. There’s also video, photo and music playback, recording software which hopefully captures video as well as audio, and a text viewer (though no indication as to what sort of attachments you’ll actually be able to open with it).
WiFi and an FM radio round out the hardware specs, and iRiver are keen to point out the Wing’s low power requirements. Undoubtedly you wouldn’t want to type anything of great substance on that flat keyboard, but the aesthetics and potential of the Wing could still easily make it a winner.
No word on when in 2008 iRiver plan on introducing the Wing, nor retail pricing.