Chip maker Qualcomm has been showing off netbook prototypes built around the company’s Snapdragon chipset for a few months now. Qualcomm’s expertise is in making chips for cellphones, but the new Snapdragon platform should be able to handle basic computing tasks for netbook-style devices, including web browsing and multimedia playback. You won’t be able to run Windows on the chipset, but it should handle Linux or Windows CE quite nicely.

CNET spotted a new Snapdragon-based device at Mobile World Congress, which looks like a clamshell netbook with a rather small display — although that could just be the camera angle. Although the keyboard looks about par for the course for a modern netbook, the long and narrow screen, lack of a full sized touchpad, and prospect of Window CE make this device feel a lot like the HP Jornada 728, which was discontinued years ago. But unlike the Jornada, this device would have a 1GHz CPU that’s capable of supporting modern web browsers, and built in support for WiFi, and possibly 3G wireless connections.

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6 replies on “Qualcomm shows Windows CE-based handheld, reminiscent of HP Jornada”

  1. In 1992 I had a Sharp MSDOS mini computer. Was really good for it’s day but the battery life/options sucked big time. The recent advances in processor power, colour screens, multimedia options, memory size would have made this a fantastic device today (if only they’d update it).

    Let’s face it, for most people who just want to surf the net, check email or maybe edit a spreadsheet/document something this size and weight is perfect. Give the screens a decent number of pixels and they’d be really useful.

    Wouldn’t it be great to see more modern devices like these old style mid 90’s designs that would be up to the task for more people? Psion shouldn’t be arguing over their trademarked “netbook” name. They SHOULD be updating the Psion 5 with new hardware and better modern software support. That keyboard was great!!! The battery life and losing memory (yes, it could used Compact Flash for more permanent memory storage) were my two main bug bears with the device. Pull your finger out Psion and get back into the game!!!

    If we keep revisiting the past, how far off can a new PDA be? LOL. That’s right, the iPhone (and ilk) are already here 🙂

  2. I think they’ll make a new modification of Windows CE for ARM netbook-like devices like they did with Windows Mobile. Or is there something keeping away the latter from those types of devices? Remember that Asus is planning an Android based netbook, so there’s not a long way to Windows Mobile netbooks.

  3. Microsoft has nothing but CE to run on these new chips. They must be pulling their hair out in Redmond.

  4. Hmm…so why is WinCE so appealing?
    Is Microsoft trying to sweeten the pot for these devices?

    1. Windows CE machines like the old Jornada 728 were instant on. No annoying boot time like with most netbooks. Instead of watching the screen boot for a minute, with CE you hit the “on” button and start working.

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