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Hands-on with the Flybook V ultra-connected ultra-portable


Unlike CES, there is no shortage of newly announced UMPC devices here at CeBIT. Perhaps that's due to this being the 1st anniversary of the platform's launch. But if you're looking for the ultimate in QWERTY portability, then look no further than the new FlyBook V5. This 1.2kg pup packs pretty much everything the discerning road-warrior could want: 1.06GHz Intel Core Duo ULV U2400 processor; up to 2GB of DDR2 memory; Intel 945GM graphics; 8.9-inch, 32-bit color, 1024 x 600 (WXGA) touchscreen display which works with the touch of a finger or included stylus in both landscape and portrait (tablet) modes; 40GB hard disk; 1.3 megapixel swivelling camera built-in to the bezel; Gigabit LAN; stereo speaker; and fingerprint reader. It also brings a reasonable mix of expansion which includes Express card, 2x USB 2.0, and TV-out. The best part, however, is the number of radios packed into this ultraportable. It starts with Bluetooth 2.0, sprinkles in some 802.11a/b/g WiFi, and and then smothers it all with 3.6Mbps UMTS/HSDPA and quad-band EDGE/GPRS/GSM. The V5 measures just 235 x 163 x 30-mm and packs a 1.2kg heft making it feel solid, not heavy in the hand. Good thing too, cause those controls you see between the keyboard and display allow you to pick the unit up while in a traditional laptop config and continue navigating the display. The miniature 80-key keyboard of the working prototype v5 that we tapped upon was seriously springy. The reduced size and key bounce would certainly take some getting used to. A sacrifice we'd be privileged to make if we could call this unit our own. Still, things might stiffen up before the April release – The Netherlands and Italy first with the rest of Europe to follow "soon" thereafter. Sorry, no definite plans for a US release date making us want one even more.

Gallery: Hands-on with the Flybook V ultra-connected ultra-portable | 19 Photos

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