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FreePad: Norway’s alternative to Sweden’s Screen Phone

Aug 29, 2000 — by Rick Lehrbaum — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 4 views

This article, by's Rick Lehrbaum, provides a detailed “sneak preview” of Screen Media's soon-to-be-released FreePad — including its features, functions, and internal hardware/software — and also examines the background and motivations of the company that is bringing the FreePad to market, including Screen Media's reasons for selecting Linux and philosophy with respect to open source… software. Lehrbaum writes . . .

“In a few months, Screen Media will begin shipping a sleekly designed, easy-to-use wireless web-pad device called the FreePad. Like Ericsson's Screen Phone, the FreePad will offer web browsing and cordless telephone functions.”

“Another important similarity between the two devices is that both use Embedded Linux as the internal operating system software platform. However, unlike Ericsson's device, which relies on the relatively new Blue Tooth wireless technology to communicate with its base station, the FreePad takes advantage of the more mature DECT technology (for European models, at least) which is used by most European cordless phones.”

“Screen Media's founder and CEO, Carl Henrik Janson, describes his company's vision for the FreePad this way: 'Our initial goal for the FreePad, is for it to become a new type of media channel for the kitchen or living room, that allows ordinary people to use the Internet and the services available there. The mission is to provide a device, together with a suite of Internet and telephone services, that takes care of the everyday needs of ordinary people — to check bank balances, play games, read newspapers' . . .”

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