By Lisa Johnston
New products on display at the American International Toy Fair, held in N
Samsung has reconfigured its planned NEXiO for the U.S. market, eliminating built-in CDMA 1X voice and data capability and replacing it with 802.11b wireless-LAN technology.
With the change, the company will market the device direct to business through its IT division, which will bundle it with business and vertical-market applications, said Peter Weedfald, VP of North America strategic marketing and new media for Samsung Electronics America.
"We see the first applications within corporate buildings or within vertical industries such as banking," he said. Sales through consumer channels could come in the future as the number of public 802.11b hot spots grows. In 2005, those hot spots will number about 60,000 in the United States compared to a current 2,000 to 3,000, Weedfald said.
The PocketPC device, with 5-inch flat-panel TFT LCD display, will be available in December at an expected $899.
CDMA 1X voice and data capability will be optional if users purchase CDMA 1X PC Cards made by other suppliers, he noted.
One reason that the U.S. version lacks built-in 1X support, he said, is consumers' bandwidth expectations. "Consumers' expectations for bandwidth are very high," Weedfald said. People want to watch streaming video at 16fps, download PowerPoint presentations, and perform other wireless feats that "only 802.11 can do" with a data rate of 11Mbps, he said.
"NEXiO is a wonderful business tool at this point because of 802.11b," he said.
The Korean version measures 6.1 by 3.6 by 0.6 inches and weighs 9.8 ounces. It features a 5-inch 800 by 480 pixel reflective LCD screen, 32MB of ROM and 32MB of SDRAM, VGA port for making presentations from the included Pocket PowerPoint Viewer, PIM applications and voice recorder. Options included GPS module, 300,000-pixel digital-camera module, 11Mbps wireless LAN module, E-book reader, removable USB host jack and games.
It also features Pocket Word and Pocket Spread Sheet to create documents, Pocket Internet Explorer for wireless Web browsing, and Pocket Outlook for wireless e-mail access.
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