UMPC

Mineral Technology offers 7-inch U91 UMPCs powered by Atom N270

U91

New Atom-based UMPCs running a Windows desktop operating system are becoming very scarce as companies focus their efforts on Android tablets. So when a small group of them landed in my inbox this morning, it was like Halloween had come early and someone accidentally dropped their Rolex in my trick-or-treat bag.

Well, okay, a Rolex knock-off. It isn't the greatest device ever seen and it won't disrupt existing trends, but Mineral Technology is at least bringing a new UMPC to market. It's incredibly chunky and the specs won't blow your minds, yet the U91 still feels like a breath of fresh air. I don't think anyone's ever said that about an unknown Chinese company's products before!

Four configurations make up the U91 UMPC series, which all feature 7-inch WVGA two-point multitouch screens, 1.6GHz Atom N270 processors, WiFi, GPS, optional 3G, dual cameras, SD card slot, VGA and ethernet ports, and trackpads.

U91-s

There are black, green, white, and red versions available, though it's possible that each one is specific to a particular configuration.

Here are the differentiating specs and prices:

  • U91-S: 16GB SSD, 1GB RAM, $460
  • U91G-S: 16GB SSD, 1GB RAM, $490
  • U91-A: 32GB SSD, 2GB RAM, $520
  • U91G-A: 32GB SSD, 2GB RAM, $540

I assume the G versions include 3G, but that isn't clear from the information.

I don't think there's any chance that the U91 will ever be sold globally and the styling definitely needs improvement, but I'm still happy to see a handheld device running Windows.

Thanks, Trapped.In.A.Room!

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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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5 thoughts on “Mineral Technology offers 7-inch U91 UMPCs powered by Atom N270

  • Avatar of aftermath

    To showcase just how out of step I am with everybody else, I’ll proudly proclaim that these devices are more interesting to me than anything else in the 7 inch space right now. The reason is simple: N-series atom processors with Intel GPUs. Open source driver support (including hardware accelerated 3d graphics) should be great (the touchscreen controller is always a concern), which means Linux should be plausible. 7 inches appears to be the sweetspot for a device that is truly mobile, truly hand held, and truly usable. I mourn the loss of the Raon Everun Note. It suffered the great tragedy of being too much, too soon and too little, too late. Here’s hoping that as the new crop of processors developed specifically for the handheld market come into devices next year that somebody remembers that 7 inches and x86 can be magic. Just give us a little better battery life, user replaceable batteries, GPUs with proper open source driver support, and NO ANDROID.

    Reply
  • I couldn´t agree more
    The cascade of Android devices are making us to forget that Windows based computers in a pocketable form factor are possible (as they were two or three years ago). So, why almost nobody is exploding this space is something that keeps surprising me.

    Reply
  • I would say it’s probably due to the fact that there has been no real progress with pocketable Windows computer technology. They’re still more or less using the same Atom CPUs from 3 years ago, which contributes to a rather poor battery life with these devices. Also I think the problem lies with Windows itself, which is primarily a desktop/laptop OS, much as we like to think otherwise. The fact is, many Windows applications just do not work well or at all on a small screened low power tablet devices.

    Android devices on the other hand, things are different. There has been rapid advances with high performance ARM based CPUs, which give great battery life. Android itself was designed to be a lightweight device OS, optimised for hand held pocketable devices.

    Reply
  • “7 inches and x86 can be magic”.. as long as the batteries can last more than 2 hours, preferably 8 or 10 hours would be better. This seems to be the current major problem with x86 tablets, lousy battery life. The JooJoo been a good example with it’s x86 CPU and only 2 hour battery, and it’s not even running Windows.

    Why ‘NO ANDROID’? It’s only a version of Linux after all. To be honest, what do most of us do with our tablet and other pocketable devices? We browse the internet, do emails, watch videos and play music, maybe edit office documents. All of which can be accomplished on an ARM based tablet running Android (Froyo), just as well as an x86 based tablet. The difference is the much longer battery life of ARM based devices over x86.

    Reply
  • Avatar of Joseph G. Mitzen

    Android is more of a locked-down version of Linux with the requirement that all programs run in their own version of Java. Being able to run a real Linux would open a device up to running approximately one bajillion existing applications as well as making it easier to write one’s own and not being locked down hence completely customizable.

    I’m fully in aftermath’s camp. I dream of a small device capable of running something like OpenSUSE 11.3.

    Reply

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