Don’t think I was going to let the Samsung Q2 go under the radar just like that! I was caught up with so much work and distracted with the fact that I will be overseas soon (more on that later). I’m want to take a moment to contribute thoughts regarding the new release in the hope of assisting some of my loyal readers.
The Samsung Q2 looks ergonomically fantastic. The QWERTY keyboard while, yes, it is split, I can certainly appreciate the thought that has gone into the positioning. If you think about your poor wrists, and just how top heavy this unit might have been had the QWERTY keyboard been placed at the bottom of the device, then you might consider the positioning a fluke, or a clever OH&S (Operation Health and Safety) consideration.
Another massive benefit on the Q2 is the camera array! How many times I have heard people wish that the Video Camera staring at them on an ASUS R2H or an EO i7210 was actually a Digital still camera, and placed on the other side. Well, lots! The inherent productivity benefits for someone working in an asset management environment or with data mining applications is massive here. Add the Tablet PC features (more on that in a minute) and the camera array becomes corporately appealing…we all know it’s also geek heaven.
The introduction of left and right click for me is a winner. I find myself favouring this form of input so often on the R2H and the EO i7200 series. It makes navigation, and especially right-click, a lot easier. On the Samsung Q1, Q1B and Q1P, one could always program the hotkeys (U1 through to U4) to perform this task, but I always preferred to program those for something much more convenient, and far less menial. Look at this video to remind yourself what I thought of programmable hotkeys.
Next I must admit that biometric is very useful. Recently when I was exploring the ability for touch screen devices to wake-on-touch I realized that it was not achievable because of hardware limitations. Because most touch screens that sit inside these Origami devices are based on an internal USB touch controller they therefore lack the ability to wake-on-touch, i.e. come back out of standby by simply tapping on the screen. I don’t know if you guys know but a fingerprint reader can actually be told to wake the device out of standby! To me this presents a quirky Star Trek type of feature that is also highly functional. I know I will be looking further into this when I get my Q2.
On the negative side it is probably crucial that we remember one important feature that is Absent Without Leave (AWOL). The TIP (Tablet Input Panel). Now I might be wrong, and I might be repeating what a hundred other Tablet blogs are saying (I haven’t been reading, sorry) but doesn’t Vista Home Edition lose Tablet PC features? The features found in Start, All Programs and then found in the Tablet PC folder, will actually be missing and not available. This sends off warning bells for me as from the little I knew about the Origami Project I always thought that it was designed to bring down the cost of a traditional Tablet PC…not kill it off!
The second concern I have, especially after viewing the Engadget photos, is the physicality of the device. It looks as though the Q1 has been basking in its own glory for a little too long and in turn forgotten to keep slim. When looking at the photo of the person holding the Q2 it looks uncomfortably fatter and bigger overall. It may just be the way I am looking at it. You tell me.
Since some of you asked it might interest you to know that I heard about the Q2 and its QWERTY keyboard about 8 days ago only. I won’t say who let it slip because of fear of repercussion upon them but I can say it was someone of rank and authority. Upon hearing the news I was intrigued immediately and concerned for the ergonomics; I guess the Engadget photos have done a great job of answering that.
Now the sad news for Australians and New Zealanders; Samsung Korea is still not convinced there is a market here! I had to get their attention by selling Q1s as a grey import for several months before I was actually allowed to have them for “real”. The Q1B and Q1P are not available in this region and the Samsung Q2 is most certainly not coming any time soon either…unless I get involved again. What do you think? Should we get the Samsung Q2 to Australia?
In case you haven’t seen, have a look at the little banner ad one the Samsung.com website promoting the Q2 at the CeBIT Show Hannover. I’m sure it will be well covered by bloggers.