I just got done unboxing the Aigo P8860 MID (on loan from DFJ) and it was such a strange experience that I can’t keep it to myself or wait to share it in my full review.
I don’t do unboxing galleries of gadgets I don’t own, but I always photograph the process so I’ve got some factory-fresh shots of the device for the review. Sometimes I’ll jot down my knee-jerk reaction to the hardware if I think it’ll change over time, but for the most part I just take the pictures, charge the battery, and get on with my day.
But here I am, fresh from opening the Aigo box for the first time and now carrying such an unexpected feeling in my stomach that I had to write this up. The bowling ball in my stomach is disappointment.
Yes, after waiting for what feels like forever to finally have a retail version of an Intel MID in my hands, I’m disappointed. Keeping in mind that this is only my very first impression, which was formed within seconds of taking the P8860 out of the box and holding it in my hands, my assessment of the MID’s hardware is this: big, thick, and cheap. Not exactly the reaction I expected.
Although I like the included pouch very much and am impressed with the array of I/O ports on the P8860, the device itself is less than what I remembered it being when I played with it briefly at CES 2008. Software and performance are what will obviously make or break this MID in the end, but since my unboxing reaction compelled me to write this prematurely, I can’t comment on any of that yet.
All I can say right now is that the Aigo MID is bigger and thicker than expected and feels cheaply made.
I suppose that because it looks so similar to the Nokia N810, I just assumed it would be a similar size (even though it has a bigger 4.8-inch display).
These aren’t fair comparisons because of what’s inside the P8860, of course, but my eyes and whatever’s responsible for my gut reaction can’t be held responsible for not knowing that. Besides, so many people already consider the N810 and other ARM-based devices (e.g., iPhone 3G, Archos 5) to be MIDs that comparisons (fair or not) are inevitable when an actual consumer-oriented Intel MID joins the party.
If we take the less mainstream approach and look at the Aigo from a UMPC-slanted perspective, however, then it becomes obvious that the MID is a marvel of engineering and the most pocketable (and powerful?) x86-based device on the market.
But again, that wasn’t my immediate impression.
But now that I’ve gotten everything off my chest, I can stop fixating on my first impressions and take a serious look at what the Aigo P8860 MID is all about. Stay tuned for an Archos 5 comparison, a full review, and more in the coming weeks.
Oh, about the XP drivers. Aigo was supposed to send them to DFJ on Monday (10/13), but I don’t think they did. I was told that they were fighting with Intel and Gigabyte to make the drivers available to everyone, but I recommend washing that down with some salt. In any case, DFJ will keep me posted and hopefully send the drivers to me when they’re available.