The next find on our quest for the Nirvana Smartphoneis the i-mate Ultimate 6150 (i-mate 6150 web site) shown below. The 6150’s native screen resolution is VGA 640×480, making it natively more suitable for displaying Win32 apps via XenApp than most QVGA screens.
Pic 1: 6150’s browser connected to Web Interface ready to authenticate.
Pic 2: 6150 running a full published desktop at 640×480. I probably should have cleaned the screen before taking the picture
So what makes the 6150 a Nirvana Devicecandidate (Original Nirvana Device Post), it’s got video output natively built into the device. The 6150 comes with a VGA adapter cable that connects into the side of the device, so you can then connect it to a monitor that accepts VGA input. The 6150 comes with software that when activated changes the device resolution to 1024×768, turns the 6150’s screen into a touchpad mouse and displays the 1024×768 output to the connected monitor. Unfortunately, the cable that I have with my demo device is only about 4ft long and did not reach to the table that was working from, so I’m using my Bluetooth mouse and keyboard instead. Might be something for the i-mate team to look at.
Pic 3: 6150 External output software.
Pic 4: 6150 connected to the hotel’s flatscreen TV, running a published desktop from XenApp. MS Word is open and I’m working on this text using this setup. The 6150 is the at the base of the TV in this pic.
All of the work to create this post will be using the 6150 connected to a published desktop in my hotel room using the flat screen TV as an external monitor (except for photo resizing which I will do with my OQO, being I don’t have photo shop installed on our XenApp demo server). Seems like a real world use case to me.
In general, I like the 6150, and it is the closest device I’ve gotten my hands on to date to hit Chris Fleck’s Nirvana deviceconcept. Personally, I like devices to have a QWERTY keyboard on the native device as well, and I hope to get a chance to try the i-mate 8150 down the road, which does have a QWERTY and VGA out capability. I also like the fact that the VGA feature is native to the device, so I don’t need to carry anything extra but the VGA cable. Flip side is that unlike the Redfly (Celio Redfly post), if I don’t have a monitor handy, let’s say in the airport, I’m restricted to the native screen of the 6150. Hey, if i-mate gives me a really long cable, maybe I can plug into one the TVs in the airport that always running CNN
So how do I rate the 6150 as a Nirvana device candidate, again I give it an “I like it”. I think I’d like the 8150 even better with the QWERTY keyboard, but in terms of it being a smartphone that I can run XenApp applications natively and then attach it an external monitor to extend the usability, it passes my initial hotel acid test. At the end of the day, a Nirvana SmartPhoneis a personal choice. So if you’re interested in the concept, I’d say that the i-mate 6105 is one to have a look at.
As always, give us your feed back on this topic. I’ve got a few more entries on more devices from the show to come. Hopefully one will be the Nirvana Smartphone you’re looking for to use with XenApp or soon XenDesktop, and you can leave the laptop at home on that next business trip. As with all of the devices being tried, we will get some more hands on time with them when I get back to FTL. We’ll try and update if we find anything new.