Brainstorms and Raves

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Sat

6

JAN

2001

Xircom’s Latest MicroPDA is Here

In our ever-striving effort to make things small, portable, and convenient, Xircom has released its latest MicroPDA, the REX 6000 MicroPDA, 1/4 the size of the Palm V. Yes, folks, that’s not a typo. Close to the size of a credit card, it weighs in at only 1.4 oz. (40g), with dimensions of 3-3/8" x 2-1/8" x 1/5" (8.57 x 5.40 x .5 cm). This new version adds lots of new features and improvements to its earlier REX 5000 model.

Brighthand gives the REX 6000 a great sendoff. Their reviewer, Steven G. Bush, has been using it for several weeks and gives it very high ratings. His positiveness certainly grabbed my attention, and I proceeded to read the entire 3-page review, totally blown away and marveling at the possibilities of a PDA that’s so small, fully functional, and practical. I hadn’t paid much attention to these tiny microPDAs until seeing Bush’s review.

I’ve already been thrilled and content with my Handspring Visor’s small size and Targus portable keyboard that I can put in my purse, still feeling like James Bond when I pull out the tiny, folded up keyboard, open it out to a full keyboard and start typing some email, a Word document, or a note to remember to stop at the grocery for milk.

I’m also admittedly still a relative newbie to the PDA world, having owned my Visor for not quite a year yet. It took a lot of convincing before I could see that I could make such practical use of something I’d previously viewed as just a fun gizmo. Now, of course, I can’t imagine my life without it. Its alarms and reminders are an absolute necessity for me, and now I also have the help and ease of taking along so much information that would otherwise be cumbersome—its address book, calendar, notes capability and so much more. A bonus is the Avantgo channels so I can read the latest when I’m waiting for an appointment, standing in line somewhere, or other 'on hold' moments when I’m out.

Xircom went all out with a Virtual Tour of the REX 6000 that includes a rex emulator to virtually experience its features, try out the rex screen, and check out how it works—the next best thing to holding it in your hand.

The REX 6000 has a 9-line LCD screen that measures 240 pixels x 120 pixels. It will also sync with Outlook (and soon many other programs), too, in a similar way to other PDAs. Prices starting at only $149 certainly make this tiny device affordable, especially within this highly competitive market. While it may not yet have all the features that I have with my Handspring Visor, I’ll definitely be keeping an eye on this microPDA technology.

Xircom’s Virtual Tour is also a fine example of using Flash technology, too, by the way. I turned off the space-agey, overly repetitive electronic background sounds before long, but I also appreciated having the choice to turn it off, too. Hats off to the designers/creators for this one.

Today’s Tips & Tidbits, also by Shirley Kaiser of SKDesigns, covers backing up your handheld and some related and fun sites.

11:31 am, pst 6 January, 2001 Comments, Trackbacks ·

Categories: Reviews, Software, Technology

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