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Why I bought the Samsung Mondi (SWD-M100)

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While I was waiting for my Samsung Mondi last week, I read a number of early-thoughts articles and reviews of the device from mainstream media sites to get a glimpse of what to expect when mine arrived. Rather than fuel my excitement for its delivery, however, they left me feeling rather frustrated, not because the device wasn't being lavished with praise but because the writers didn't seem to understand the point of the Mondi or the MID product category in general.

When it wasn't being called a phone (which it isn't), the Mondi was declared to be "dead right out of the gate" and criticized for sporting a "form factor nobody wants" because it's apparently too big to fit into your pocket. The device was also accused of being unable to replace a phone or a laptop, making it "convenient for nothing" and therefore just an "expensive novelty."

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I don't care that something I just spent $450 on wasn't being adored by others. I know some people get insanely peeved when something they like/use gets slammed but since my favorite gadgets are never media darlings or popular with mainstream consumers, less-than-positive write-ups don't bother me. The approval of strangers doesn't impact whether I like, want, or buy something.

No, what frustrates me is the implication that a product like the Samsung Mondi doesn't fill a legitimate need in the market.

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Sure, it may not be able to replace a smartphone or a notebook, but it isn't supposed to either. For people whose mobile needs are sufficiently met with a laptop and phone, I understand how the Mondi (and other MIDs that aren't phones) could be interpreted as a device without a purpose. But hold on. Two-device users are not the only consumers out there.

Some of us actually want and/or need more than that. Whether it's to get our work done with as little compromise as possible or to have something more robust and capable in our pockets/bags for other reasons (media consumption, communication, etc.), some of us want/need that "in-between gadget" that others find so useless.

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The Mondi, with its 800MHz ARM11 processor and Windows Mobile 6.1 operating system, isn't the best example of a MID, but it's an important device to be in the mainstream consumer's consciousness. It won't be the next "[fill in the blank]-killer" and will probably leave a lot of people who see it at Best Buy and Clearwire stores scratching their heads, but it will at least introduce the possibilities and maybe even the concept of a product category like this to a wider audience than Samsung's target market (business professionals and pro-mobile users). A companion device that bridges the gap between a smartphone and laptop/netbook is probably something the average non-tech consumer (i.e., the one who doesn't read tech blogs and only finds out about new products from TV commercials and magazine ads) has never heard of or seen. And exposure can only lead to good things.

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So why did I buy it? Well, aside from my gadget addiction and affection for pocketable gadgets like UMPCs and MIDs, the Mondi was a good choice for me because I actually don't have anything like it. I mean, I do in some ways, but in other ways it's a unique addition to my collection.

I'm usually pretty impulsive when it comes to gadget shopping (the Mondi was an impulse buy), so it's rare for me to actually have an idea of what purpose a new device will serve or to compare it to what I already have to measure the overlap. But after assessing my current stable of mobile devices, I've concluded that although I do have a few items that overlap the Mondi, none of them are exactly right for me in comparison. You can see photos of the Mondi alongside the following devices in my Mondi size comparisons post.

Nokia N810. Although there are many differences between the N810 and Mondi, they also have a lot in common: form factor, 800 x 480 resolution, third-party applications, active OS developer/hacker community, built-in GPS, no cell phone or 3G capability, four-row keyboard, and internal storage plus memory card expansion. But the Mondi is better for me because it's faster, has a 3-megapixel rear camera, and I feel more comfortable in the Windows Mobile environment than the Maemo one. WM isn't consumer-friendly in the same way that, say, the iPhone OS is, but it's more straightforward, easily customizable, and inviting than Maemo to someone who doesn't know much about Linux. I also have a fair amount of WM apps that I really like from previous devices. And now that I've spent some time with it, I know that the Mondi has a brighter, more colorful screen (it's a little bigger too) and a better keyboard that enables me to type faster and more c omfortably.

Sony mylo 2. I know there aren't many mylo 2 users/owners out there and the device isn't as capable as the N810, but I couldn't ignore it when looking through my gadgets for potential Mondi competitors because they offer similar functionality (internet, multimedia, camera with video recording, widgets) in the same slider form factor. But the Mondi is better for me because it's much more open and capable. It also has a bigger screen, better web browser, more internal storage, sleeker design, Bluetooth, GPS, and so on and so forth.

HTC Advantage X7501. When thinking about oversized Windows Mobile devices, the Advantage always comes to mind first. Although it has the standard smartphone functionality that the Mondi lacks, the two are still logical choices for comparison because both run Windows Mobile on a screen size larger than is typically found on WM units. But the Mondi is better for me because it has a higher screen resolution, faster processor, slide-out backlit keyboard, and a more compact form factor.

Sony Ericsson Xperia X1. In addition to sharing a similar slider design, the X1 and Mondi both run Windows Mobile 6.1 on an 800 x 480 touchscreen. Like the Advantage, the X1 is a smartphone (albeit one of "normal" size). But the Mondi is better for me because it has a larger screen that's a better fit for its resolution, faster processor, and a bigger keyboard.

iPhone 3GS. The 3GS is my primary phone right now and what I use as my go-to device for quick web and email access. It's what I reach for when I don't want/need a full-blown Windows OS or a keyboard for extended text entry because it's sufficient for most minor tasks. In other words, although I also use it as a phone, the 3GS can usually function as that "in-between" gadget (the one I consider the Mondi to be) for me. But the Mondi is better for me because it has a bigger screen with a higher resolution (no incessant zooming!), hardware keyboard, more customizable UI, and more complete web experience. And though it doesn't have an app store as polished as the iTunes App Store and the applications are generally more expensive, there are a lot more choices. WM 6.1 may lack the finger-friendly refinement of the iPhone OS, but it gives users the freedom to do what they want.

Intel UMPCs/MIDs. I have a number of "real" UMPCs/MIDs (with a few more on the way) that run full-blown Windows XP or Vista on Intel x86 CPUs and are obviously more powerful than the Mondi. Resume time from sleep mode in Vista (about 3 seconds) is nearly as fast as instant-on in Windows Mobile too, so they're suitable as go-to devices for quick bursts of use with the added benefit of being capable of much more than that if necessary. But the Mondi is better for me because of its size. Until full desktop operating systems can be squeezed onto units as small and light as the Mondi, Intel-based UMPCs/MIDs will serve me better as primary computing devices. Right now, they're just a little too big and heavy for me to use in handheld thumb-typing mode for long stretches of time; I can hold the Mondi for several hours straight without fatigue in my forearms, wrists, hands, or fingers, which makes me reach for it more often. The Mondi also has better standby and in-use battery life.

So that's why nothing else I currently own takes the place of the Samsung Mondi and why I bought it. And so far, I'm really glad I did. It's renewed my interest in Windows Mobile, I want to use it all the time, and I want to carry it everywhere (even though Honolulu doesn't have WiMAX).

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Is it the perfect mobile device? No. If I could remake the Mondi today, I'd leave the hardware largely unchanged and put in an Intel processor, install Windows 7, swap the existing control pad for an optical mouse, and add HSPA. If it wasn't possible for something this small to run a desktop OS, then I'd stick with Windows Mobile (version 6.5 or 7, though) and use a Cortex A8 CPU instead.

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I'll go into greater detail about what works/doesn't work and what I like/don't like about the Mondi soon, but it won't "ruin" anything if I reveal now that WM and the ARM11 CPU are the device's weakest points. You could have guessed that. They're not deal-breaking weaknesses for me by any means, but they're obviously the bottleneck.

See more Samsung Mondi features and reviews.

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Jenn K. Lee

Jenn K. Lee is the founder of Pocketables. She loves gadgets the way most women love shoes and purses. The pieces in her tech wardrobe that go with everything are currently the Samsung Galaxy Note II, Sony Tablet P, and Nexus 7, but there are still a couple of vintage UMPCs/MIDs in the back of her closet.

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Avatar of Jenn K. Lee

71 thoughts on “Why I bought the Samsung Mondi (SWD-M100)

  • “If I could remake the Mondi today, I’d leave the hardware largely unchanged and put in an Intel processor, install Windows 7, swap the existing control pad for an optical mouse, and add HSPA.”

    When do you think you will have these mods completed ? I can’t wait !

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  • Well, with all of my advanced hacking, modding, soldering, and engineering skills, it could be any day now. ;-)

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  • may a HTC Touch Pro2 fit your needs? Or the screen is still too small?

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  • I’m quite interested in seeing Pocketables final review on this devise. I’m trying to find a devise that is actually spec’d better than my iPaq 4755 that’s nearly 6 years old! You would think that the industry could have produced something that beats a PDA with 624mhz CPU, QVGA screen and 8 hour battery life long before now, but no. I have the Viliv S5 and it’s good for some things, but it’s kind of heavy. It doesn’t have true instant on nor does it wakeup reliably from sleep mode.

    I generally prefer to keep my cell phone and PDA separate as there are times I don’t need PDA functions and just need the ability to make or receive a call. I mean, why carry the extra bulk to a restaurant when a Blackberry Pearl slips into a pocket so nicely? I admit I do horrible unspeakable things to cell phones (like accidentally dropping them in fountains) so prefer not to invest too much money in them. I also stay away from all the modern social networking BS that turns mild mannered citizens into brainless unobservant twits. I live in San Fran and watch people do the dumbest thing while their noses are buried in their phones like stepping off a curb into heavy traffic without even looking.

    What I need is a PDA that has acceptable handwriting recognition for notes and light documents and is compatible with MS Word, can handle one or more e-book reading programs, some time wasting games, WIFI and GPS would also be nice. I would love to get a Toshiba G1, but it isn’t likely to land on US shores for at least 4-6 more months and will cost probably nearly double the Mondi’s price without a contract. The Omnia II and HTC Touch PRO II may arrive sooner, but are still pricier than the Mondi while sporting smaller screens and processors.

    I look forward to reading Jenn’s final thoughts on the Mondi. Hopefully it can fit the bill for another year or so.

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  • Excellent article. Given your proposed modifications to the Mondi, perhaps the upcoming HTC Leo would be your dream device?

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  • Hi,

    does anybody know a place in Europe where you can buy the Mondi? I think this device is really great, even if you can’t use WiMAX over here… (-:

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  • Jenn said: “If I could remake the Mondi today, I’d leave the hardware largely unchanged and put in an Intel processor, install Windows 7, swap the existing control pad for an optical mouse, and add HSPA.”

    Lol so you’d turn it into an oQo Model 2!!

    I agree with many points, and i think that the iphone advent has convinced Americans that they need a convergence device- phone, entertainment etc. all in one. Most folks only want to carry their laptop and cell, leaving no room for anything else, and not being mentally pliable enough to realize that most daily minutia can be handled with aplomb by much more concealed devices.. another issue is people may not even be aware of their existence.

    Outside of a tremendous marketing push..I believe that MID’s can succeed, but they should be marketed as GPS replacements with everything else being “extra”. Just as PDA’s were targeted to business users many moons ago.

    Speaking for me personally.. the Mondi will be used for Internet, RDP, VOIP, Movies & Media, Gaming(emulators, win mo & popcap), and emergency office tasks.
    My phone(Touch Pro), is now just my phone & wireless access point. This should preserve the battery quite a bit, contrasted to when i threw everything + the kitchen sink in it.

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  • Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for this article.

    I’ve been seriously thinking of getting the Mondi, but after reading the few other lackluster reviews and not seeing the hype over it like what was put out for devices like the Palm Pre, I doubted whether the Mondi would have any longevity or community support and development.

    This is the closest device I’ve seen yet to my dream mobile device. But I too hate the feeling of having to justify and defend something that would would really like but is shot down by others. I don’t need anything new and revolutionary; just something that works and meets my needs.

    I don’t need another phone. There are dozens of new smartphones coming out packed with all the features. But typically the largest screen are 2.8″-3.2″ with low resolution. And they are optimized to be phones first and everything secondary. And you often need to buy them with a service contract.

    I’m a big ebook reader during my long commutes to and from work, but I don’t want to carry around another device that does nothing but reads books.

    I’m saddened by the demise of the classic PDA. If they’ve been rebranded as a MID, that’s fine. I do very much want all the music, video, camera, games, etc. features. But I also want my calendar, tasks, memos, notes, file sync, wifi, etc. I want to be able to open up PDFs, Word docs, and other files for references, but I’m not going to be editing them while I’m on the go.

    And despite the boring and reportedly sluggishness of Windows Mobile, WiMo’s biggest draw for me is the tons of software out there for it that I can load whatever I want, and you don’t have to go to the manufacturer online store containing only apps they want you to have and then have to pay for each one (eh em…Apple).

    I too will be very interested to see your comments on its usage. Your image with the vertical portrait orientation of the display is intriguing. That’s the first I’ve seen it. Is that specific to the application’s functions, or does the device auto rotate and reformat the display for all apps?

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  • an addendum: I dont think its as clear cut as dropping a 3G/HSPA modem and adding voice to these devices then seeing them fly off shelves.. The HTC Universal was one of greatest mobile inventions of its time, yet i dont believe i have ever witnessed one in public, nor known anyone personally who owned one.

    These devices need large corporate backing and a clearly defined purpose.. whether that be gaming, music, video, phone, being cool.. something.. 99% of the population seem to need a mental tie-in before things become relevant to them.

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  • Didn’t the model 02 use a Via processor?

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  • Hi, does the Mondi offer bluetooth dun for internet access via a cellphone, if you do not want to get the monthly service? I have a variety of devices so I prefer to get my wireless broadband via my phone so that I can hook up to any of my portable devices.

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  • The 02 and 02+ don’t have optical mice. They have trackstick pointers.

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  • Yeah, the screen is a little too small. I love the slide-and-tilt design, though, and would have probably considered buying it if I didn’t get the iPhone 3GS to replace my Xperia X1 instead.

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  • If it had a hardware keyboard, I’d definitely be impatiently waiting for its release. I don’t really like that it’s a phone too, though, as I wouldn’t use it as one and the contract-free price would probably be quite high. After the HTC Advantage and Xperia X1, I’m done with spending $800+ on smartphones! I doubt an unsubsidized Leo would cost that much, but I don’t think it would be as cheap as the Mondi.

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  • I think the only place online that’s selling it right now is LetsTalk.com, which might not ship outside the US.

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  • “Speaking for me personally.. the Mondi will be used for Internet, RDP, VOIP, Movies & Media, Gaming(emulators, win mo & popcap), and emergency office tasks”

    What kind of emulators? I’ve been trying to get GBA emus to work with no playable success.

    Did you order your Mondi yet?

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  • The Mondi has an accelerometer that can be used to auto-rotate the screen in Opera only. There’s no way to change the orientation in any other application or area of the system without a third-party utility like RotateMe.

    I’m not sure why it works like this, as many WM phones have a screen rotation option built-in (auto or manual), but I couldn’t find anything on the Mondi out of the box.

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  • I agree. For any gadget to be considered a hit, it needs to be embraced by the masses and marketed/advertised in mainstream media. I don’t think Apple products would be nearly as popular as they are today without all the excessive marketing.

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  • Avatar of silentnight

    My first choice would be a Samsung OmniaPro. My second choice is the Touch Pro2. For the monthly charges it may be the TP2, though.

    Some reviewers and commenters elsewhere are stuck on separate phone and laptop use. Over the next year, there should be some real good MIDs with phone devices. Take the Mondi body, insert some Omni Pro and Cortex goodness, then those reviewer will understand.

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  • http://tinyurl.com/mlcpfe

    Those are a few GBA emu’s, and i did order from letstalk on the firstday i found out, 7/20 i think, but i canceled as i can just pickone up in my area(DC metro).

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  • I can’t find a definitive list of the supported BT profiles, but based on my tests, it doesn’t look like the Mondi supports DUN or PAN. I paired it with my Xperia X1, which supports about 10 profiles, and the only service the Mondi could use was Object Push.

    So I think other than that, the Mondi only has BT headset and maybe A2DP. Unlike other Windows Mobile devices, this one doesn’t include a list of profiles in the BT settings.

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  • I tried MorphGear and PocketGBA a few days ago, but neither worked well enough to be usable on the Mondi. Maybe I need to try some different ROMs and fiddle with the settings a bit more. In the meantime, I’ve just dusted off my chunky Nintendo DS.

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  • Can you confirm that it has an accelerometer?

    All the pre-launch specs on people’s blogs report an accelerometer, but on the Samsung Mondi specs page, for Accelerometer, it explicitly says “No”.
    http://tinyurl.com/klnutz

    It’s not like it not having an accelerometer is a deal breaker for me, but after expecting it, I’m really wishing it did have it.

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  • Is there a way or does anyone know whether the Mondi uses the Broadcom BT stack or the Microsoft BT stack.

    That might answer some BT questions for you.

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  • Avatar of medah4rick

    can u comment on battery life or will there be a review?

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  • As stated in the comment you’re replying to: “The Mondi has an accelerometer that can be used to auto-rotate the screen in Opera only.”

    The accelerometer can also be used in a dice game and to mute the sound in Windows Media Player and Samsung’s media player.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Don McNiel

    Jenn, Thank you for the blog on the Mondi device. I was wanting to purchase a Palm Pre for the PDA functionality and keyboard. I just couldn’t go the $100 a month service plan for the one device. I also don’t like the Apple iPhone. The service plans are even more expensive for that phone. I saw your blog while researching the CLEAR service that was being launched in Las Vegas. I could not find any meaningful reviews, as you mentioned earlier, everyone seems to have an axe to grind.

    My wife and I mainly text each other over our phones and use a Dell Aximv pda for mobile Wifi communication. I didn’t need another cell phone. I did want access to the internet, VOIP, Office compatibility, games and multi-media access in a portable device. Your blog showed the possibility of the Mondi fulfilling those purposes.

    I purchased two Mondi units on Saturday, 08/01/2009. One is for my wife and one is for me. I live in Las Vegas with a CLEAR Wimax tower that I can see from my window. I also purchased the CLEAR service for the house, laptop and VOIP telephone.

    We have been extremely impressed so far. We are using the Skype service to make calls and text to each other over the Mondi and will be cancelling our AT&T cell service. The CLEAR Wimax is 4-6 times faster than the Sprint mobile broadband that I have in my laptop, so that service gets cancelled as well. The AT&T service plans with NO internet was $103 a month; the Sprint service was $62 a month. The CLEAR Wimax service for all 5 devices is $120 a month for unlimited service and calls. It works for us because we don’t travel out of the Wimax area, except for brief periods. When we do, we have WiFi access through the Mondis at most rest areas across the country, and we are together anyway. We will be getting a cheap prepaid national carrier phone for emergencies.

    I understand that this unit is not for everyone. Wimax isn’t everywhere yet and in a couple of years LTE will be available. However, here and now, in Las Vegas, life is good!

    There are a lot of things that I like about this unit, large screen, Wimax, keyboard, storage, widgets, camera, etc. I can’t wait to read your experiences and review of the functionality of the Mondi device. Thank you so much for putting a review out that truly looks at this device for what it was designed to be. It certainly fits our lifestyle and mobile internet requirements.

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  • Good question. Is there a way to find out on the device itself? I couldn’t find anything in the settings other than the fact that it’s BT 2.0 + EDR.

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  • I’ll run some tests and write them up either in a full review or another article. Samsung’s official specs list 4 hours for WiMAX (which I can’t test since there’s no coverage here), 5 hours for WiFi, and “up to 1000 hours” for WiFi standby time. That last figure obviously can’t be right, but standby time *is* really good.

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  • Thanks for your comments, Don! I’m glad the Mondi is working out so well for you and your wife.

    Is there anything you *don’t* like about it?

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  • Ah, that’s the one I already tried. One of the main issues is that the Mondi’s screen won’t rotate without third-party software (except for in Opera), so PocketGBA is in the wrong orientation. Every time I tried to rotate it, though, the system would get stuck between displaying several screens. I didn’t try exhaustively to get it to work, so maybe there’s still hope. :-)

    MorphGear started up with no problem, but the games load in what I assume is QVGA, which is kind of ridiculous on a WVGA display. The Mondi’s hardware controls make gameplay an issue as well, as I’d much rather use the touchscreen.

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  • Avatar of Don McNiel

    There are a few things that I don’t like about the Mondi. There is no protection for the unit itself, i.e. case, pouch, etc. When the keyboard is extended, it appears unstable with the stand. I don’t know enough about how to customize widgets, menus and apps to get the most out of the device yet. I have heard conflicting stories about the upgradability of WinMo 6.1 to 6.5 or higher. I thought the keyboard was going to be difficult to actually use, with the keys almost flush with the board, but that does not seem to be a problem in actual use. I don’t see an “esc” or “tab” key that I am used to on a normal keyboard. I wish there was a trackball or some better method for moving around the screen. It is sometimes hard to magnify the page and move around the page without shrinking the page back again accidentally.

    Really, there is nothing “major” that I don’t like. Part of it is just getting used to the particular quirks of a new device. I have only had it a few days and I am sure that I will discover both good and bad things.

    I look forward to more of the Mondi devices getting into people’s hands. I know that I will learn a lot from others as well as just using it myself.

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  • Hi Jen:

    Excellent review as always. I am a big fan of WM, and like you, don’t care about mainstream reviews or advertisements as long as the device meet my needs. Some of my favorite WM device have been 4″ VGA WM PDA’s. This device has an even bigger screen/resolution, and I too enjoy slider keyboards.

    I went to LetsTalk and saw the mondi with (Clear) beside it. I assume that designates Clearwire. Since the nearest Clearwire network is more than 200 miles away, and the nearest WiMax much further, I just want to be sure we are not agreeing to a Clearwire service contract when purchasing from LetsTalk. That (CLEAR) beside the Mondi concerns me somewhat.

    Thanks Jenn, and continue with the great reviews.

    Reply
  • Not to worry, Jim. The Mondi is sold contract-free through LetsTalk and actually ships with WiMAX unactivated. You need to manually set it up (and presumably sign up with service) so if you don’t want the service, you never have to get it.

    The price of the Mondi with a two-year contract with Clear is said to be $350 (just $100 off the retail price), so if you’re paying $450, then you’re getting it without the contract.

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  • Ya know~ I think something in that size is quite possible, but you’d have no option of upgrading (similar to the UMID) and you’d probably only get about 30 min battery life unless you’d increase the depth of the unit by a quarter inch (maybe about 2 hours then if you’re lucky).

    I can’t wait until things like that actually come out though!

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  • I would like to know if someone test Video Call in the Samsung Mondi.
    Using skype or another program.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Don McNiel

    Hopefully this reply will get to the right place. I tried replying after the last message on page two, but the box was not complete that I am typing in now and the message did not format correctly.

    The first reply is to the cost of the Mondi. Here in Las Vegas, the Best Buy stores are selling it for $499.99 period. The CLEAR store is selling it for $449.99 WITH a two-year commitment to their service. I am trying to get something on the backend from CLEAR, but they do not have anything set-up yet to do that. It is not selling for $349 with a two year contract anywhere that I could buy from.

    The second reply concerns using Skype on the Mondi. It is unbelievably clear (pun intended)! Less than an hour ago, my wife called from her Mondi to me on my Mondi as she was on the road in Las Vegas. I was at work on the wi-fi connection and not the Wimax connection, and it sounded like our cell phone conversations. We tested Skype at home on the Mondi units while I took a walk in the neighborhood and my wife called from the Mondi in the house. She could hear when I left the street and started walking on gravel. It was at night and there was no traffic on the road. We were using the headsets that are included in the package with the Mondi units. I think we are going to look for the bluetooth versions, but these work great. We were both on the Wimax connection and we were thrilled.

    One huge downside so far has been the lack of service in certain areas where we may be driving and cannot use the Wimax or Wifi and lose the ability to make a call.

    Hope that helps!

    Reply
  • Avatar of Don McNiel

    Geracao, Ooops! Should have read the message closer. I have not tested the Video calling yet! I apologize! In the next few days, if I can get out of work long enough, I plan on setting up a video conference with my kids in Texas. If I can’t get that scheduled, I’ll do a test with my wife’s Mondi and mine.

    Again, sorry for the confusion.

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  • Hi Don McNiel,
    I would like to know if you use Video Call on Skype?
    How is the performace, resolution…?
    Rgs,
    Geracao

    Reply
  • Don McNiel,
    I have at home a router with N technology do you know about that it used to be (A, B, G) now they are selling N, so I can use my computer outside my home and still have signal but when I go to the pool a lit bit further I do not have any signal.
    The question is the Samsung Mondi has the Wimax techonogy it means a better receive system. Do you think if I will be able to go a long distance and still have my home signal?

    Rgs,

    Geracao

    Reply
  • Avatar of Geracao

    Jenn,
    I would to say thanks for the Jenn’s job, very good material. Let try to update this site as much as possible then we will have very good material to help each other.
    Rgs,
    Geracao

    Reply
  • I haven’t tried it myself to confirm, but it’s been my understanding that video calling isn’t support yet. I believe it’s supposed to be enabled via a service pack that will come out later this year.

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  • The Mondi only supports 802.11b/g, so it isn’t capable of taking advantage of n technology. The WiMAX and WiFi modules are independent of each other, as far as I know, so one does not affect the other. I don’t think having WiMAX in a device could improve a WiFi signal.

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  • I can’t believe those prices! Everything published so far has indicated that it would sell for $350 with a Clear contract. No one seemed happy about that either, as $100 subsidy is pretty poor. It doesn’t make sense that LetsTalk would sell the device contract-free for the same price as Clear. I’ll double-check with someone from Samsung to find out what’s going on.

    By the way, if you’d like a better place to chat about the Mondi, feel free to hop over to the Pocketables Forum. There aren’t any Mondi discussions going on over there yet, but you can start some in the Internet Devices area of the forum: http://forum.pocketables.com/forumdisplay.php?f=56

    It would actually be easier for people to find certain answers in the future if the topics were split into dedicated threads in the forum (rather than all mixed up together here).

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  • Jenn,

    Nice review. Don’t feel bad that people don’t understand the market. That (and a high price tag) is what drove OQO under. Before my OQO O2 died, I liked it but wanted it thinner with more battery life, HSDPA (in the US) and bit more CPU. I also looked at my friends who had iPhones and thought it might be better.

    Now I have a 3GS and I have to say I miss my OQO. It really was a great machine and the Mondi is a kind of a cousin so I can very much appreciate the market. I think anyone who used a OQO for any length of time really liked it but there were plenty of speculative and short time naysayers and I suspect both of these are true of the Mondi.

    The iPhone is great but it can’t do the job of a real mid/mid+ someone will get it right and it looks like the Mondi is a good step in the right direction.

    Reply
  • Thanks Jenn! I will mosey over to the forums. I actually never made it that far in my search for Mondi information. In the next day or two I would love to start a thread for Mondi users or for those who just want more information. I doubt there are that many actual Mondi owners, but I do believe it has its place.

    Thanks for checking into the pricing structure. I was shocked, but already hooked on the device and ponied up. I do appreciate the information and place for discussion! Great site!

    Reply
  • Thanks Jenn for the feedback. I understand your point but let see if someone come if a test result using Samsung Mondi. I mean:
    Check the distance comparing a device could be a computer with 802.11b/g and Samsung Mondi and see which one go further.
    Rgs,
    Geracao

    Reply
  • Hi Jen,
    That is the point people are saying that they did not tried yet. But let put some effort ant try.
    I know that Skype Video Call does not work on Windows Mobile 6.1 using others devices. So I guess that does not work with Samsung Mondi as well (maybe Samsung Mondi has something special).
    What I realy does not understand and I would like to see a good explanation:
    1. Lot of devices has a second Camera (webcam) in the front what is the purpose just work as mirror???? Does not make sense!!!
    2. All that devices that has a Camera say that they support Video but guess what? They did not say which program they test. That is ridiculous.
    Take a look on the follow website is very similar with the Samsung Mondi and has front camera as well.
    _______________________________________________
    http://www.forum.nokia.com/devices/N810_WiMAX
    Device Description:
    The Nokia N810 Internet Tablet WiMAX Edition features include WiMAX 802.16e and Voice-over-IP (VoIP) Internet and video calling, Instant Messaging, an integrated slide-out QWERTY keyboard and touch screen. The N810 WiMAX Edition lets you stay connected on the go with WiMAX, WLAN or Bluetooth 2.0 +EDR and a Bluetooth enabled mobile phone. The hi-resolution 4.13″, 800 x 480 screen and the integrated web cam add to the internet experience. Use the Nokia N810 WiMAX Edition to play music and videos with the built-in stereo speakers or use the 3.5mm stereo plug with headphones. The Nokia N810 WiMAX also has an integrated GPS receiver which allows you to pinpoint your position and find points-of-interests using pre-loaded maps.
    _______________________________________________
    It says integrate webcam but what is the functionality for that webcam.
    What is the functionality for the webcam on (HTC, N97…)?

    So share your comments!!!

    Rgs,

    Geracao

    Reply
  • If there is a difference in WiFi signal strength, it would only be because of the type of WiFi module being used.

    I don’t know what’s inside the Mondi…

    Reply
  • Thanks for the information. That’s too bad, I guess I will just keep waiting, hopefully there will be a Nokia N900. Please let us know if your conclusion changes on this issue.

    Reply
  • Ditto. I have an iPaq 4700 that I’ve spent too much money upgrading, accessorizing, and repairing, but still can’t find anything to replace it. I tried the OQO 2 but it wasn’t quite right. I’m currently waiting for the Omnia 2 because I’m cursed with Verizon as a carrier. I’m also looking at the new Samsung XQ or whatever it’s called. I’d happily get the world’s smallest, dumbest cell-phone if it just had bluetooth for tethering to a great MID. My search continues…

    Reply
  • Avatar of orbitalcomp

    Sounds similar to that weird tilt-scroll feature in Opera on the Advantage…guess Opera has a thing for accelerometers :-)

    Reply
  • Avatar of Geracao

    Hi rr0123,

    Any guess, information how will be the N900?
    Screen, Webcam, SIM card???
    People say about 3.5″ screen. I could not believe on that.
    Toshiba TG01 has 4.1″ and is a mobile.
    Nokia N97 has 3.7″ and is a mobile as well.
    The N810 has 4.13″ I do not think they will reduce the screen does not make any sense.
    The Samsung Mondi it is a small size 12 centimeters lengh but has a bigger screen 4.3″ that is smart. I think the Nokia N900 could come with 4.5″ and remains the same 12 centimeters that Samsung Mondi has. They just need to place the webcam on the middle top. That webcam on the left side does not make any sense. Right now make sense the webcam works as mirror!!!!
    But they should put in the middle and work as suppose to be something useful a really webcam.
    The other thing that the N900 should come is the better disk than the Samsung Mondi at least 64Gb. The nokia N97 has 32 GB. If you remember when Nokia launch the N95 the first one did not have any disk (the second N95 they launch 5 months later came with 8 Gb) that was the time they launch the N810. So now they launch the N97 with 32 Gb so I really expect 64Gb on the N900.

    Rgs,

    Geracao

    Reply
  • Avatar of Geracao

    Hi Jenn,

    I did not see feedback from you!!!!

    Rgs,

    Geracao

    Reply
  • Anyone’s Mondi come with an HDMI-out adaptor?(mine didnt).. can’t even find a corresponding HDMI slot on the device =/

    Reply
  • Avatar of Phen0m

    oh ok.. i thought maybe i caught a bad one.. i love this thing though! so much smaller then you expect.. its actually a hair smaller than my n810

    Reply
  • I tried the GBA module a few weeks ago but the roms weren’t playable because of the controls and resolution (it only displayed at what I think was QVGA). Are you playing in landscape or portrait mode?

    Reply
  • Avatar of Geracao

    Hi Jenn,

    Feedback what I said on:
    August 07, 2009 at 03:17 AM!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply
  • Oh, sorry about that.

    It would actually be better to continue this conversation in the Pocketables Forum, where discussions are easier to follow, but the short answer is that video calling simply isn’t supported by the Mondi yet. I’ve asked Samsung to confirm that the feature will be added later this year.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Geracao

    Hi Jen,
    We can continue that conversation in the Forum is not a problem but before that.
    Could be more specific about the feature? That is not clear.
    You said: “I’ve asked Samsung to confirm that the feature will be added later this year.”
    They have already the Webcam like so many other devices that has the Webcam just as a mirror.
    What are the intention for Samsung? How come they say in the end of the year, I mean they say that and you accept? You did not ask how?
    They will replace some parts of the device?
    It will be new software?

    Could you be more clear. Lot of people is accessing your updates if you do not answer clear it will not make sense.

    Rgs,

    Geracao

    Reply
  • It will just be a software update that will enable the video calling feature. Samsung’s PR rep told me that they don’t have an official timeline for it, though, so I don’t know when it will actually come out.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Geracao

    Hi Jenn,

    Thanks for the feedback.

    Rgs,

    Geracao

    Reply
  • I have a Mondi and agree with about 99% of what you stated in this article. By the way, it was one of the best on this device that I have read so far. I’ve been messing with the mobile op system since it was called CE and devices had monochrome screens. The turn off was that the screen would not rotate when I used the notes prog. and the stylus to write with. I installed a small footprint app that allows the screen to rotate to any view that I desire. the Mondi fills the gap I had when using my HP Ipaq 210 that I use everyday on field assignments. All the apps that I need to make this a hand held laptop in the field on now resident on the Mondi and with it I no longer have the need to carry a camera as the internal one is well suited to my needs. You are correct, it is not perfect. I haven’t come across anything that is yet. When they place a full windows operating system on a chip with as fast a start up time as Winmo, I’ll probably go out and buy it too.

    Reply
  • Avatar of doublesheese

    Hi Jen K. Lee and PheOnom

    I also got the Mondi since September 2009.
    Currently I only use is as my GPS Navigation aid with IGO 8.3

    Did you guys add any programs on it ? Did you ever tweak it up ?

    Jen , is that SBP running on your review pictures ?

    I think this Mondi needs a new interface/custom Roms but I think there are just too little of us , so the chefs can’t be bothered with the Mondi

    Reply
  • Yes, it’s SPB Mobile Shell.

    Unfortunately, I don’t have the device anymore so I haven’t kept up with any news about it. I don’t think there has been any, though, as Samsung basically released it and then abandoned it.

    Reply

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