Asustek enters PDA market with Pocket PC offering

Taiwanese hardware maker Asustek Computer Corp. is gunning for a slice of the market for PDAs (personal digital assistants) with the long-expected launch last month of its MyPal A600, based on Microsoft Corp.’s Pocket PC 2002 software and a 400MHz Xscale processor from Intel Corp.

Asustek, in Taipei, is best known as one of the world’s largest motherboard makers but has also made a name for itself selling laptops under its own brand in Asian markets like China and Taiwan. The company has flirted with entering the PDA market for months, showing off prototype devices at the launch of the Chinese version of Microsoft Corp.’s Pocket PC 2002 software last year and at the Computex exhibition here in June

Measuring 75 millimetres (mm) wide by 125mm tall by 12.8mm thick, the MyPal A600 weighs 138 grams. Sporting a silver aluminum alloy case, it packs a 400MHz PXA250 processor from Intel, 64M bytes of RAM, 32M bytes of flash ROM, a 3.5-inch TFT (thin film transistor) LCD (liquid crystal display) with 240 pixel by 320 pixel resolution, and a battery that enables the device to run continuously for 15 hours, according to Asustek. The MyPal A600 also offers a CF (Compact Flash) card slot alongside an infrared port and a serial port.

Pricing and availability were not immediately available.