Podcasts

TinyPodcast: A week with a Samsung Q1 Ultra Mobile PC

I wrote a teaser post a few days ago in ink, about a new device that I got to play with for a week. To top off that week in grand style, Brian and I got together to record a podcast, old-school style. Just two geeks in a conference room with a mic, some gadgets, and a whole lot to talk about. The show is about an hour long, and 27MB. You can play it directly from the player on this post, or use the download link. Or even better, subscribe to the TinyScreenfuls feed in your favorite podcast aggregator (like iTunes) to get it automatically.

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Aaron from Intel Software Network was nice enough to arrange to get me a Samsung Q1 UMPC to use for a week (it’s actually the same unit you see in my video with Aaron). “But you have to blog about it!” he said. I didn’t blog about it while I had it, because I was saving up to talk about all of my impressions on the podcast with Brian (Aaron was invited, but couldn’t make it). Aaron, I hope this podcast makes up for it. :-)

What’s a UMPC? For those who don’t know, it’s basically a very small Tablet PC. It runs full blown Windows XP Tablet Edition, and can be hooked up to an external monitor, keyboard, and mouse, and used just like a regular PC. But the Ultra Mobile part is what’s so cool about it. About the size of a paperback book, with a 7 inch touch screen, you can take it anywhere. Imagine what new uses you could find for such a powerful, small device in your life. I know I have…

So, here you have a full hour of pure, geeky TinyPodcast goodness. Brian and I talk about the Q1 and UMPCs in general. Brian bought himself a Q1 UMPC a few months ago, and has been living with it daily since then. He loves it, and has been blogging about it over on his blog, Geekblog.org. In the podcast, we go over what we each like and don’t like about the hardware, design, software, and general usage of the UMPC.

What’s the verdict? Well, all I can say is the best way to sell these puppies is to let people use one for a while. I fell in love pretty quickly, but no one who reads this blog will be surprised by that. :-) I had to give it back this morning, and that was HARD. Even worse, I now have a terrible case of “gadget lust” – you know, the irrational yearning for a new toy that leads to you being willing to rack up the credit card debt just to get your hands on the object of your desire. My wife is NOT amused. 😉

For me, though, it’s not the Samsung Q1 that I want. Brian tipped me off to the Asus R2H, which is the same form factor and price as the Q1 ($1000), but has more RAM (768 MB vs 512 MB), a bigger hard drive (60GB vs 40GB), an SD slot (instead of CF – more useful to me), integrated GPS (turns it into a full navigation system), and a 1.3 megapixel camera. NewEgg has them for $998, and I’m telling you, it’s SO hard not to reach for the credit card! I have to sell some old gadgets or something to come up with a way to finance this, because I REALLY want one of these! If anyone wants to sponsor TinyScreenfuls for a while by getting me one of these, let’s talk! :-)

Hope you enjoy the podcast – as always, let us know if you have any questions or comments. You know how to reach us. And before you ask, yes, Brian and I are going to start doing the podcast regularly again. So stay subscribed! :-)

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21 thoughts on “TinyPodcast: A week with a Samsung Q1 Ultra Mobile PC

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  9. That’s a really informative post – thanks for the link!

    I was looking at it, though, and I still think that the CF card slot is not enough to make me pick the Q1 over the Asus R2H. Sure, you can get card readers to use SD in the CF slot. And of all the other solutions on that page, GPS and camera are the most interesting/relevant to me, but the R2H already has built-in GPS and a camera. Plus, I use SD almost exclusively (the only CF device I still have is my M-Audio Microtrack recorder, but it’s standard mini-USB, too). So, not quite enough to make me change my mind, but still really useful information for anyone with a Q1, or other device with a CF slot. :-)

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  11. Mike says:

    I’m with Josh on the value of the Asus R2H having as much built in as it does, but I believe the CF slot is better than having an SD slot. I have moved to buying my cameras based on whether or not they use an SD slot and that is one of the major considerations so I don’t end up with multiple memory formats. It would be nice if everyone would standardize on a single format, but until that happens the CF format offers the greatest versatility–unless someone can add a PC Card slot (I know, too much power required).

    As for traveling photography storage and viewing: My son has the Archos 340 we purchased three years ago and it is an amazingly powerful little toy when you consider it uses a CF slot (there it goes again) to take in any memory card and it operates as a portable PVR. I’m thinking about buying a couple of used ones.

  12. JF says:

    Thanks for a great show. Listened to it on my commute this morning. Reminds me why Tiny Podcast is my favourite podcast. I love the format – just two geeks talking about gadgets. Don’t change it, just do more of the same :-) Length was fine BTW.

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