Is it me, or are electronic dictionaries just small laptops?

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We don’t go a bundle on e-dictionaries here in the UK, mainly because we have a long and noble tradition of spelling words however the hell we want – and if it matches the official definition, it’s a bonus. That, and the fact that we don’t have room for any more gadgets in our pockets.

However, e-dictionaries are big in South Korea, with the latest model being Digitalcube’s i-station UDIC. It’s got more than 50 dictionaries preloaded, with a search engine letting you hunt down words in all of ’em. It’s also got a 4.3-inch swivelling touchscreen, a full QWERTY keyboard, text-to-speech features, and a 60GB hard drive.

Which makes me wonder: isn’t this just a slightly cut-down laptop? Surely Koreans have their own local equivalent of the Eee PC, which they could just load a dictionary application onto? Perhaps not. Anyway, as a dictionary-avoiding Brit, I’m stumped (adjective: ‘at a loss, baffled’).

(via AVING USA)

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Stuart Dredge