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Nano notebook design sports Mobile WiMAX

Sep 10, 2009 — by Jonathan Angel — from the LinuxDevices Archive — views

Via announced a Linux-compatible notebook reference design that packs a 1.3GHz Nano processor along with optional Mobile WiMAX, GPS, and cellular connectivity. The “eNote Turnkey Solution” has an 11.6-inch display, 2-megapixel camera, and up to 2GB of DDR2, says Via, which also announced it has joined the Linux Foundation.

The latest in a series of notebook reference designs from Via, the eNote Turnkey Solution is apparently intended to be rebadged by third parties, or perhaps sold by cellular carriers direct to their customers. Via refers to the design as being "a thin and light notebook that strikes the perfect balance between netbook ultra-portability and notebook performance."

The eNote's most notable feature is the availability of a Mobile WiMAX (IEEE 802.16e) chip from Sequans, the SQN1130. Sequans touts this SoC (system-on-chip) as "the industry's lowest power, highest throughput chip solution for WiMAX mobile stations."


Via's eNote Turnkey Solution
(Click to enlarge)

According to Via, WiMAX is provided on the eNote by one of two internal, USB-interfaced modules. The first module can offer WiMAX, HSDPA, or EV-DO/WCDMA connectivity, while the second module features WiFi, Bluetooth, and optional GPS functionality, the company says.

The eNote also comes with three USB 2.0 ports, a VGA port, audio I/O jacks, and a four-in-one (SD/SDIO/MMC/Memory Stick) card reader, according to Via. The device has a two megapixel webcam that is described as "dual headed," presumably usable both for videoconferencing and picture taking.

Naturally, the eNote Turnkey Solution is built around Via chips, such as the 1.3GHz Nano processor and the VX800 northbridge/southbridge. The latter includes Via's Chrome9 2D/3D graphics engine, with DirectX 9 compatibility, hardware rotation capability, and the potential for a frame buffer as large as 256MB, according to Via.

Via says the eNote Turnkey Solution has an 11.6-inch display, will support up to 2GB of RAM, and can be equipped with a variety of hard disk and solid-state storage options. The device will support Linux, Windows Vista Basic, and Windows XP, according to the company.

According to Via, the eNote Turnkey Solution weighs 2.9 pounds (1.3kg) and measures 9.44 x 6.88 x 1.42 inches (240 x 175 x 36.2mm). The notebook will provide up to three hours of operation from a four-cell, 2600mAh battery, the company adds.

Sequans CEO Georges Karam stated, "The Via eNote Turnkey Solution is one of the most advanced mobile notebooks in the world. It incorporates all the features one would expect in a state-of-the-art ultra mobile product, plus all the connectivity options that users need to experience truly high speed connectivity anywhere they go."

Previous portable computer reference designs from Via have included the 2007 NanoBook, which had a seven-inch display and a Via C7-M ULV processor, and the 2008 OpenBook, which upgraded to an 8.9-inch screen and had an open source case design that customers could download in CAD (computer-aided design) format. The NanoBook was commercialized by Packard Bell as the Windows-ready EasyNote XS and by Everex as the Linux-oriented Cloudbook.

Features and specifications listed by Via for the eNote Turnkey Solution include the following:

  • Processor — 1.3GHz Nano (presumably the U2225 or U2250)
  • Display — 11.6-inch screen (resolution n/s)
  • Camera — 2 megapixel, dual-headed
  • Memory — Up to 2GB of DDR2 RAM
  • Storage — Accepts hard disks or SSDs (solid state disks)
  • Networking:
      LAN — n/s

    • WLAN — 802.11b/g
    • PAN — Bluetooth
    • WAN:
      • WiMAX (optional)
      • HSDPA (optional)
      • EV-DO/WCDMA (optional)
  • Other I/O:
    • 3 x USB 2.0
    • 1 x VGA
    • Audio I/O
  • Expansion — SD/SDIO/MMC/Memory Stick card reader
  • Battery type/life:
    • 4-cell, 2600mAh battery
    • Up to three hours of operation
  • Dimensions — 9.44 x 6.88 x 1.42 inches (240 x 175 x 36.2mm)
  • Weight — 2.9 pounds (1.3kg)


The Via eNote Turnkey Solution

Source: Via Corporation (click to play)

Via joins Linux Foundation

In other Via Technologies news, the company announced it has joined the Linux Foundation. Via opened its specifications and code over a year ago, and began to adhere to a quarterly release schedule. As a result, open source developers can more easily support Via's components, says the company. Via says it continues to work closely with the Linux community to ensure compatibility with its processor platforms by providing drivers, key documentation, and source code. More information may be found at the Via Linux Portal, here.

Stated Amanda McPherson, VP of marketing and developer programs at the non-profit Linux Foundation, "VIA is among an important group of companies that are working with the Linux community to help create a whole new class of computing devices."

Availability

Via did not provide availability or pricing information for the eNote Turnkey Solution. However, the company says the device will be on display at the Sequans booth during the 4G World show, scheduled for Sept. 15 to 18 in Chicago.


This article was originally published on LinuxDevices.com and has been donated to the open source community by QuinStreet Inc. Please visit LinuxToday.com for up-to-date news and articles about Linux and open source.



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