PocketSurfer2 handheld mobile Internet device coming to UK in August

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Earlier this month we said that DataWind’s PocketSurfer2 was coming soon, and today more specifications, and a definite UK launch date and price, have been announced.

The PocketSurfer2 is an ultra-thin and portable Internet communications device featuring a built-in GPRS modem and SIM card, GPS location information, 5 hours of battery life with 5 days standby, a built-in high performance antenna, 640×240 VGA colour screen with transreflective backlighting, and a backlit QWERTY keyboard.

It claims to load web pages in under seven seconds, and offers web browsing in the original layout. It features a mouse pointer, and weighs in at 174g with dimensions of 152x75x15mm.

Those page load times, even over GPRS, are said to be achievable thanks to DataWind’s patented acceleration technology. They claim that comparative devices can take up to two minutes to download similar web pages.

The payment model aims to be simple, too, with no contractual payments, activation fees, or credit checks. The PocketSurfer2 can be activated straight out of the box, and the ‘average user’ doesn’t have to pay monthly fees. It will work anywhere your mobile currently does, not relying on Wi-Fi hotspots.

It’s still not exactly clear how much data can be downloaded per day/month, effectively free of charge, before charges are imposed.

In addition, although Suneet Tuli, CEO of DataWind, said that the company’s goal was to deliver the “real web” and allow users to “enjoy the same rich media graphics and browser functionality of the desktop experience”, it’s not immediately clear if the device will handle Flash, Java, and other web technologies. Great if it does, but even if the device is powerful enough (we don’t know what’s driving it under the bonnet) there’s hefty data involved in downloading some rich content.

The PocketSurfer2 will be available in stores from 16th August, priced £179.99, or can be pre-ordered from 25th July from Amazon.

DataWind

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Andy Merrett