Toshiba’s e805 Pocket PC
nearly has it all: a fast processor, gobs of memory, easy navigation, Wi-Fi, and
a large display. It is, hands down, one of the best Pocket PCs we’ve seen. The
only difference between the e805 and another Pocket PC called the e800 is that
the former model includes ArcSoft PhotoBase software.
First off, at 5.3 x 3.0 x 0.65 inches and 6.8 ounces, the e805 isn’t one of
the smaller Pocket PCs on the market. What sets the e805 apart from all
current Pocket PCs is its large and bright 4.0-inch display that supports 65,000
colors. It is the largest display available in a Pocket PC. The iPAQ h5550 from
Hewlett-Packard, for example, has a 3.8-inch display.
The e805’s display can run at 480 x 640 pixel or VGA resolution, which is unique for a Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC device. While only a few applications in
the ClearVue suite from Wesstek that are bundled with the handheld can run at
this resolution, it is a sight to behold. These applications include Document
for Word files, Worksheet for Excel files, Presentation for PowerPoint files and
Image for pictures.
For software that isn’t written for 480 x 640, the display automatically
drops down to the Pocket PC standard of 240 x 320. You can easily switch
resolutions in the Start Menu, after which the Pocket PC is restarted to go to
the new resolution.
Microsoft recently announced an update to its handheld operating system
called Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition. This upgrade adds a number of
significant features to the platform, including support for VGA screens. Toshiba
is expected to release a free upgrade to Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition for
e805 series owners. For those who can’t wait for the upgrade, there is a couple
of freeware applications that let you use most applications in VGA mode. Resfix 2.0 is one
of these applications. In addition to allowing you to use software at VGA, it
also let’s users switch between landscape and portrait modes, another feature
that won’t be available universally until Windows Mobile 2003 Second Edition
starts to ship.
As well as a a fantastic display, the e805 also offers an ample amount of
memory; 32MB of ROM, 128MB of RAM and 32MB of NAND Flash memory for backup. In
addition, the fastest Intel XScale processor currently available drives it.
(Intel recently announced its next series of mobile processors. This new line
goes as high as 624 MHz.)
The e805 uniquely includes a Secure Digital slot as well as a CompactFlash
slot for both memory and peripheral expansion, a nice touch. The comparable
Hewlett-Packard iPAQ h5550 only has a Secure Digital slot. It also doesn’t have
the 32MB of NAND Flash memory mentioned in the previous paragraph.
Toshiba’s Wi-Fi software makes it easy to get up on the Internet access via a hotspot or wireless router. The unit doesn’t include Bluetooth, however, which
would be nice just for the ability to use a wireless headset, as the unit
includes Toshiba’s VoIP 2 phone software for making Internet phone calls. Of
course, the unit does include a stereo headphone/microphone jack. In terms
of sound, the Toshiba offers excellent audio that rivals even the best MP3
The bundled 1320 mAh Lithium-Ion battery is removable, and an even more
powerful 2640 mAh battery can be bought as an option. The bundled battery did a
good job of lasting throughout a day of fairly heavy use with Wi-Fi turned on
As we mentioned in the beginning of this review, the $550 e805 is a terrific
handheld. It has nearly all the features (Wi-Fi, memory, expansion, and power)
one would want in a Pocket PC. But what sets it apart is the device’s display,
which is one of the brightest and largest available. In most areas, it rivals or
surpasses Hewlett-Packard’s iPAQ h5550. Now, if only it had Bluetooth…
Reprinted from PocketPCcity.