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Apple Newton vs Samsung Q1 UMPC 226

An anonymous reader writes "CNET has run a comparison between the 1997 Apple Newton and a modern Windows ultra mobile PC, the Samsung Q1. Remarkably, the Newton comes off as the winner. From the article: 'An operating system designed for a desktop computer will rarely shoehorn well into a portable device, yet that is exactly what Samsung has tried to do with the Q1. Very little consideration has been given to the differing priorities of desktop and small-form computer users. Windows is a one-size-fits-all solution, whereas the Newton OS is very specifically built for the efficient use of a small screen and stylus.'"
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Apple Newton vs Samsung Q1 UMPC

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  • Not compared (Score:5, Interesting)

    by andrewman327 ( 635952 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:40AM (#15798168) Homepage Journal
    I have always liked the Palm OS the most. I currently carry my LifeDrive with me everywhere I go and I am very happy with it. People need to learn that they cannot carry their desktop with them in the palm (had to) of their hand. Instead of scaling down desktop OS and apps, they need to start small.
  • by Clockwurk ( 577966 ) * on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:41AM (#15798176) Homepage
    mobile OS. Having 1 set of menus and a dock for applications would work really well on a vertical screen.
  • anything (Score:4, Interesting)

    by stoolpigeon ( 454276 ) * <bittercode@gmail> on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:43AM (#15798193) Homepage Journal
    just about anything would beat the q1 in my book on battery life alone. 2.5 hours? That's just not going to cut it. Throw in the price on top of that and I just can't see it. I can get a nice laptop for less. This isn't that much smaller than one anyway-- they recommend carrying it in a bag.
  • Re:Not compared (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:52AM (#15798261) Homepage
    I loved my lifedrive until I had to start travelling and got an iQue. now my lifedrive sit's in a drawer unused.

    I have a pda, a 4Gig SD card in it for storage and a full GPS with the best dataset I can get. Having the gps with not only road data but store, hotel and resturant data is far more valuableto a travelling schlep.
  • Re:"Winner?" (Score:4, Interesting)

    by SpecTheIntro ( 951219 ) <spectheintro AT gmail DOT com> on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:52AM (#15798262)

    Furthermore, get a load of this gem: "It would be easy to dismiss the Newton's greyscale screen as inferior to the Q1's full-colour display, but Apple's choice of a greyscale LCD is one of the reasons the Newton enjoys over 30 hours of continuous battery life, compared to the Q1's 2.5 hours." WTF? This is biased reviewing at its best. An LCD screen should be reviewed based on the qualities of the goddamned screen. Which display is sharper? Which is brighter? Which is clearer? Which screen allows more versatility? Battery life is a separate goddamned category. It should not be a factor in deciding which screen is better than another unless all other things are equal--which they clearly are not. The entire review is basically the reviewers saying: "Yeah, the Q1 is really nice, but we want a PDA, and that's not what the Q is, so Apple wins."

  • Re:"Winner?" (Score:4, Interesting)

    by mgblst ( 80109 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:09AM (#15798373) Homepage
    The Q1 is just a differently windows shaped notebook computer. If what you want to do is write a document, check your email, check the web, then the Newton is perfect for that - and it lasts 30 hours. This was made 10 years ago, the Q1 only lasts 2.5 - because is is a full on pc. Sure, you can watch videos, play music and so much more, but if you want to do something simple, you still only get that pathetic battery life!
  • Re:"Winner?" (Score:5, Interesting)

    by hpavc ( 129350 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:11AM (#15798386)
    Well the apple screen is clearer, sharper, more vibrant when the other model has no battery and isn't able to compete. The devices are all about utility and ease of use. You cannot use something that cannot be counted on to work. The time of 2.5 hours seems insanely short to me, I couldnt use that during a ten hour work day as a tool. If its really really cool looking, that isn't going to help.
  • Re:I love my Newton (Score:4, Interesting)

    by hey! ( 33014 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:13AM (#15798399) Homepage Journal
    I love my Newton 2100. I so wish Apple would release a new version. I'd buy it in a second.

    Why? How could the Newton be made better and still be a Newton? Color? Don't need it. Memory and processor? Got beacoup for a PDA. Wifi and bluetooth would be nice, but with two PCMCIA card slots, that's not a big problem.

    All we really need is updated software.

    The two things that Newton got wrong were price and form factor. I'll be a bit heretical here and say that price was probably the bigger issue in its market failure. People aren't going to snap up any mobile computing platform for $1000 unless it's a laptop.

    Form factor is a two edged sword. The Newton was far to big for a address book and calendar device. But it is far better for viewing text and entering data than any pocket PDA.

    If the Newtwon were available today for less than $200, it would create its own application niches.

  • Reality check. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by PFI_Optix ( 936301 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:22AM (#15798469) Journal
    The Newton is essentially a big PDA.

    The Q1 is a small tablet (laptop).

    The article seemed most interested in their roles as PDAs. OF COURSE the PDA will win.

    Let's compare the Newton with some good CE-based handhelds and see what we find.
  • by hcdejong ( 561314 ) <hobbes&xmsnet,nl> on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:47AM (#15798662)
    The USP of the Newton was the way its applications worked together. The ability to write 'lunch John' and have the system guess the time and which person you were referring to is what sets it apart from most information managers.
    The fact that this feature still is this rare is mindboggling, by the way. What have the world's application developers been doing for the last decade? The future's there for the copying, but instead we get more crap shoveled down our throats.
  • by metamatic ( 202216 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:52AM (#15798704) Homepage Journal
    1. Lose the PCMCIA, replace with SD.

    2. Built in WiFi and Bluetooth.

    3. Make it slightly smaller and lighter. May require shift to AAA instead of AA. I'd settle for any size larger than any current Palm OS PDA but smaller than the 2100.

    4. Give it USB instead of serial.

    5. Make it work with iSync and define an open communications protocol.

    6. Maybe a higher resolution grayscale screen.

    7. Faster CPU.

    8. PDF support and web browser in the core OS.

    I'd buy the result for pretty much any amount of money up to $1000, seriously. I don't care if people in general want it to be less than $200, I don't see anything on the market that competes so I'm prepared to pay more.

    It's a damn tragedy that the Newton was killed by Jobs. It's the one thing he's done that I'm still bitter about.
  • I've been using a PDA since 1994 when I got my first Apple Newton (later replaced by my Newton MessagePad 120) and I must say I've never found a suitable replacement since. Its quite sad, really.
  • Re:Newton Advantages (Score:5, Interesting)

    by soft_guy ( 534437 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @11:00AM (#15798763)
    The story I heard was that they actually lost the source code for many of the key components needed to do anything with the Newton. Possibly they lost the source to the OS itself. This had to do with the mass exodus of everyone in the Newton group during the chaotic period of transition between Gil Amelio as CEO and Steve Jobs.
  • by ratboy666 ( 104074 ) <fred_weigel AT hotmail DOT com> on Friday July 28, 2006 @11:14AM (#15798873) Journal

    I really liked my Newton.

    But, I use a Palm m505 now. Why? Mostly size. Color screen is almost not relevant (well, there is one application that I find it useful in - EasyCalc graphing calculator, where I can plot multiple functions, each with its own color.). I could lose the colour.

    Speed? The m505 is a 32Mhz 68000, its slower than the Newton. Still gets the job done, and the battery life is good.

    Handwriting? I initially thought that the lack of cursive, and graffiti was going to be a killer. Surprisingly, it only took a couple of days to become proficient with grafiti.

    Organizer? Here, the Newton wins. Hands down. All information is magically correlated in a Newton. The palm is to... um... "application oriented". It does have cross application search, but it isn't as good. You also have to be IN the application to do something. No random scrawling of instructions, with the knowledge that the PDA will take care of it.

    Connectivity? the palm wins (at least with stock Linux distributions).

    In conclusion, I use the m505 for its size and linux connectivity (out-of-the-box). If a Newton device were released that brought the size down to m505, and had an "open connectivity" kit for standard linux apps (openoffice), I would switch. Oh -- one more thing. The "IR" feature would have to be standard and be able to beam contacts, notes, etc. to and from my phone (which my m505 does).

    The Samsung Q1? Not even in the same league. It won't fit into my "manbag". Its battery life is WAY too short. And its a remarkably poor interface for doing quick PDA things. I don't need fancy, I need super-quick reliable interactions. Even the m505 fails here - it takes SECONDS to jump from calculator to address book. Blech. The Newton was superior. If I need to tell someone "please slow down, my PDA isn't keeping up", or have the urge to capture on scrap paper first, the PDA has failed. The only delay with the Newton was the handwriting recognition -- and the model I had didn't allow deferred recognition.

    My perfect PDA:

    - palm m505 form factor
    - 8+ hours battery life
    - newton style software
    - linux connectivity
    - very fast recognizer, perhaps deferred recognition
    - sd slot expansion (two slots)
    - wifi and/or bluetooth and IR (compatible)
    - vibration


  • Not that remarkable (Score:4, Interesting)

    by penguinstorm ( 575341 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @11:26AM (#15798989) Homepage
    Ask anyone who owned a Newton -- ok, maybe not the FIRST generation but the later ones -- and this is not remarkable. Newton's worked extremely well, and functioned as my only "personal" computer when I had my First Real Job(tm)

    It's a shame really, because Steve killed them as much -- I think -- out of spite for John Sculley as anything else. I'm not saying I *blame* him -- I can only BUY a Mac because Steve did what he did -- but the motivation was very clearly personal on some level.
  • How I Miss My Newton (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ImaNihilist ( 889325 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @02:04PM (#15800508)
    I wish they'd bring it back. They actually made a color version, but it never saw the light of day. They had it on display at Innovations at Epcot in Disney.

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