Samsung Demos Handheld PC with Wi-Fi

The Handheld PC is the Pocket PC’s larger and more bulkier older cousin. While Pocket PCs have consistently gotten sleeker and more powerful, improvements to the Handheld PC haven’t comes as quickly. Samsung hopes to change this perception with the Nexio XP30, which it is showing off this week at the CeBIT tradeshow in Hanover, Germany.

Unlike other Microsoft-based handhelds, including Pocket PCs and Smartphones, the Nexio is built on the Windows CE .Net 4.1 platform, not Windows Mobile. Windows CE .Net 4.1 includes the Pocket Office suite of applications and Pocket Internet Explorer.

Nexio differs from traditional Handheld PCs in a couple of ways. First, it doesn’t have an integrated keyboard, but it does have Wi-Fi (802.11b) built-in. The Nexio also doesn’t have the standard clamshell design of other Handheld PCs. Instead, it appears the device will come as a tablet-style device like a standard PDA. Samsung will offer a keyboard case, however, as an option.

The unit features an impressive array of specifications, including a 400MHz PXA255 X-Scale processor, 64MB of flash memory, a 128MB of RAM and a USB host port. There is also a Type II CompactFlash slot, a speaker and a microphone. Nexio measures 6.1 x 3.6 x 0.53 inches (15.4 x 9.1 x 1.34 centimeters) and weighs 8.5 ounces (240 grams).

As with all Handheld PCs, the Nexio’s TFT display is large at five inches. The screen supports a 800 x 480 (WVGA) pixel resolution, which means it could easily handle most Web pages. In terms of power, Samsung plans to offer a 1500 mAh Lithium-Polymer rechargeable battery with an extended battery pack as an option.

Samsung will start selling the Nexio in South Korea in April for about $679. It won’t be available in the United States and Europe until next year.

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