Toshiba e740

September 13, 2002

Well, it's about that time of the month again, that's right — a new gadget. I purchased the Toshiba e740 Pocket PC a few hours ago and just got back from returning it. The device is incredible, but had a few flaws I couldn't accept. Let's start with the pros:

  • 400MHz Intel XScale processor (yes, 400MHz :P)
  • Integrated 802.11 wireless (first handheld ever with this feature; had it working fairly quickly on the wireless network in my apartment)
  • Great form factor
  • All of the usual bells and whistles expected of current Pocket PC devices (240x320 resolution, 65K LCD TFT-reflective screen, 64MB RAM, 32MB ROM, etc)

Now for the cons:

  • There is NO backup battery. I had read about this in reviews and just decided I could live without it, BUT, as was mentioned in a few of those reviews, the removable lithium-polymer battery came loose from routine handling of the device (there is a latch on the side that is supposed to keep the battery in place; this came undone), which resulted in complete data loss. This is obviously unacceptable. What a ridiculous oversight by Toshiba. I mean, really.
  • Another major drawback was that though the 802.11 was surprisingly easy to setup (using Toshiba's installed application), the antenna strength was rather weak — even just like 30-40 feet from my wireless router. Overall though, not a bad attempt for a 1st-gen feature.

So, there you have it. As much as I want to put this one on my gadgets page, I digress, I only owned it for 3 hours. :P

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