Black UMID comes to Dynamism

Posted on 19 August 2009 by

After a long wait and more than a little worry that UMID had gone out of business, the black Mbook M1, one of the most impressive of all the UMPCs based on it’s size, performance, speed and capability, is coming to Dynamism next week for $599.

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Dynamism are also offering a free leather case (while stocks last)

The UMID runs XP on the same  1.3Ghz Intel Atom CPU asyou’ll find in the Viliv X5, X70 and Asus T91. It’s a proven CPU now and ideal for high-end mobile work with long battery life. Expect 4hours real-world usage out of the UMID.

The keyboard is good, the touchscreen is good and there’s even a 3G option available. This is the ultimate tool for the pro-twitter user. Tweetdeck and Firefox are a deadly combo!

Things to watch out for are:

USB ports require a dongle to adapt them to a normal sized port. The audio in/out is also on a dongle which is very annoying. There’s also a question about build quality and screen angle. We’ve heard that the casing design and plastics have been updated to eliminate the creakyness found in the earlier versions but we still haven’t had 100% confirmation that the screen angle has been improved. You can see the problem demonstrated in my demo video which gives a good overview of the good and bad points of the UMID

You can read the full review of the UMID M1 here. There’s a huge amount of UMID content here.

The long anticipated compact and cool — world’s smallest PC with refined matte black casing– will be shipping from Dynamism next week. While supplies last, we will also include a free leather case ($50 value) with each order. This UMID M1 is long-awaited and fairly limited, so we expect our shipment to sell out quickly. [ Dynamism]

UMID product page with external links to reviews and articles.

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  • Marc

    Have emailed Dynamism to see if they know about the screen angle issue. It could tip me over the edge.

    Although the headphone jack port could also stop me going for it too…

    • Me too. I’ve asked UMID and Dynamism for pics!

  • Michael

    Chippy, compared to the Viliv S7 can you please say which one you would prefer?

    • Marc

      Are they even comparable?

      The size difference and thus usage model is significant.

      Having owned an S5 and a UMID already, I can say that, in general, the Viliv stuff feels better made and in general has better specifications.

    • @michael. As Marc says, the usage models are quite different.

      The S7 is something that could be everything from a MID to a Netbook. The UMID is really good for microblogging and not long-form keyboard input.

      A UMID would be a great partner device for a netbook in my opinion.

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  • DavidC1

    Now I think of it if the hard drive space was bigger, I might have opted for the UMID instead of the S5. That and the 512MB of memory. SSDs are not attractive when I’m space conscious even with a 60GB drive. Not to mention the price.

    The truth about battery life.
    -7 hours claim
    -5 hours real usage
    -If you want a device that lasts more than a year, then the battery needs to be used carefully. On Li-Ion devices that means don’t drain the battery below 30%.

    Resulting battery life: 3.5 hours

    • I’m not worried about drive space or memory on this. XP Home doesn’t need much memory to run and you can stack two or three apps up and still have no problems. The SSD is nice and fast too so swapping is less of an issues. 32GB of microSD will fit in the UMID body too.

      Steve.

      • Marc

        Agreed. 512Mb is fine for XP and still allow for quite a few apps. And it’s never really going to be a work horse that you use for everything?

        The keen can do an nLite version of XP (see some threads over on pocketables) to save even more memory.

        • DavidC1

          The problem I see on these type of devices is that it’ll be most useful for video. I have 11.5GB worth of video on my S5, since I don’t want to have to carry a USB stick every time. Or say I want to install a game, which takes several GB.

          I also use an SSD on my desktop. Rather speedy even for desktop standards, the X25-M seems to have lag that isn’t otherwise noticeable when the capacity gets to 70% or so. Which means space is even more crucial on an SSD!

          It’s already a hard buy against a 1/2 price Netbook anyways. The low standby power drain also meant that I’m not rebooting this device as often.

          I couldn’t imagine how it would have been back in the McCaslin or even 900MHz Celeron M days, oh boy…

        • Marc

          David, you’ve made me pause for thought with the power drain comment as it reminded me of something…

          I had a UMID for a few days, generally like it a lot, but build quality, cheap plastics and lack of headphone jack were big negatives. In general I preferred the S5 but in the end lack of keyboard killed that for me.

          One thing I forgot about the UMID, that was much better in the S5, was that even when turned off the UMID seemed to drain the battery pretty quickly. Not something that happened with the S5…

        • DavidC1

          Ahh, I forgot about that. May I ask what the drain was? Honestly even owning one of the longest battery life device on the market, I still feel 6 hours isn’t enough(one reason being said above, Li-Ion limits, I don’t want to have a 4 hour device in less than a year). So what’s happening is while up to 10 hours I would put it on standby, I would try not to as every % on actual usage becomes precious.

          Off Topic: What is up with the battery life sensor on the S5? No software can really detect the battery life and capacity even remotely accurately(Battery Bar shows it as 100mW).

        • Marc

          I really have no statistics on the drain on the UMID. I pretty much go the S5 and UMID at the same time and due to it’s few quirks switch to the S5 and sold the UMID very quickly.

          All I remember was coming back to the device after a few days and it having no battery left even though it was turned off. Something I didn’t notice with the S5.

          Any other UMID owners able to comment?

        • yves

          In stand by mode, I noticed a battery drain of 10% in 10 hours. Not so bad.
          I almost never shutdown my UMID. The device wakes up from stand by in less than 3 seconds, it’s ideal.

          Real battery life is ~4 hours with wifi on and “normal” surfing activity (and the device becomes very hot in this use case). 5.5 to 6 hours (and a much cooler device) with wifi off.

          After having removed some unuseful XP components and installed my usual apps (firefox, open office, the GIMP, Foxit reader, Faststone image viewer, VLC, some light games, Eset Nod32 antivirus), I’ve 10.4 GB free on the SSD (I store my data on a microSD card).

          The 512 MB RAM are not a real issue if you know what you are doing… With just XP and the antivirus running, there are 180 MB free. Firefox with heavy pages opened (e.g. umpcportal…) can take more than 100 MB. But I dont’t think that you can find a real usage of such a small device with a lot of apps running simultaneously. In my use cases I almost never noticed any swapping.
          The antivirus is a problem: I tried Avast and Avira Antivir; both had a too big impact on the performances and took too much RAM space. Eset Nod32 is much better – but has no free version.

          What else…?

          I’m typing this comment on the keyboard of the UMID. I can type with 2 or 3 fingers of each hand at a decent speed (>50% of my typing speed on a normal keyboard), or thumbtype. I wouldn’t like writing a novel with this keyboard but it’s more than acceptable for a mobile usage (or for using it in a sofa, in some positions where I couldn’t use a laptop…).

          If you don’t need to type long documents or work on large Excel sheets, and if you can deal with only one mini-USB port, the UMID can be a replacement for a netbook. And it is pocketable.

        • DavidC1

          Wow, 10% drain is a lot. I think 30 hour standby on the Viliv S5 resulted in somewhat between 0-10%.

          The battery life figures are interesting. Reviews seem to indicate similar battery life(maybe S5 achieving 30 min more), but 4 hours is a significant different. Is it 4 hours from 100% to 0%(or whatever the shutdown percentage is)?

          Like I said, the S5 lasted 4 hours going from 100 to 30% playing WC3 while streaming files over WLAN. Of course, I don’t keep my screen brightness higher than 30-40% of the max most of the time and I put settings to “Balanced”.

          Antivirus and Defragment is a big drain on both battery life and performance. I think its even greater than the usage I mentioned above.

  • We’re trying to get a demo device out to Ben for some hands-on ASAP.

    • Marc

      I notice that Dynamism aren’t offer a 3G version.

      • Thanks. Article corrected.
        With the Mifi in my hands, I wasn’t that interested anyway ;-)

        • Marc

          I’ve nearly ordered a MiFi three times now!

          My problem with it, is that I have to carry another device and ensure it’s charged…

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  • pepilo

    Sorry but no 3G no deal.

  • Sokonomi

    No adequate port out, still no dice.
    This device would have been so godlike if it only had a USB port and 3.5″ headphone jack. It would have pulled me away from buying an Eking i1. Maybe they will get it right with the M2.

  • yamete888

    only 512mb (why not 1gb??? so no Win7), no built-in 3g, no standard ports (USB, earphone/mic jack)…but I love the matte black, small size, SSD, microSD slot, and the freebie case that dynamism.com is offering for the time being…

  • StraySoul

    So this device becomes very hot when using like the OQO 01 does?

  • I’m very intrigued in the UMID M1 because I want a clam-shell (or convertible) pocketable laptop with a physical keyboard, and the UMID M1 is the only one I can find that fits those features. There are some obvious flaws with the M1, but unless someone can point out an alternative that fits those features, I’ll likely give in and buy an M1 before too long.

    Any leads, maybe?

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