S10 could really put Viliv on the map

Posted on 11 November 2009, Last updated on 12 November 2019 by

s10 Over the last 6 months or so, Viliv has created a near rebirth of the UMPC, stunning a good number of people with the highly regarded S5 and X70. Not to long after, they brought the Viliv S7, their first device with a keyboard. I wrote an article back in July titled: The Viliv S7’s biggest challenge: the keyboard. After having a chance to review the S7 for myself, I found the keyboard to be the most disappointing part of the S7. At the same time however the S7 made me very excited for Viliv’s upcoming 10″ version, the S10.

What we’ve see so far from the S10 has shown it to be a very attractive device. If the S10 has the footprint to offer a good typing experience, and still delivers the good points of the S7, I feel that the S10 could break through and become a serious netbook competitor which will put the name Viliv in front of a large new audience that they haven’t yet had access to.

s10 keyboard The keyboard forecast on the S10 is looking really good so far. From early pictures that Chippy shot of the unit at IDF 09 I can see that the S10’s footprint gave Viliv enough room to fix every single issue that I noted in my S7 review. They fixed the tiny right shift key by dropping the arrow keys down and providing enough space for a full right shift key. They fixed the F11 and F12 keys being bound to F9 and F10 as the extra width provided room for these keys to be in their own dedicated space. They also put the tilde key back where it needs to go, which aligns the number row correctly, and fixed other things like odd punctuation placement and backward Fn/ctrl keys.

But netbooks as of late have offered rather good typing experiences, so presuming that the S10’s keyboard can match these, how does the S10 stand a chance of competing against already established brands? The answer to this lies in the S10’s battery life, convertibility, and high res screen.

The S7 had hugely impressive battery life, running for almost 6 hours at 100% CPU usage, 100% brightness, and WiFi+BT turned on. This means that the S7 should run for around 8 hours with regular usage. Incredibly fast standby times allow one to extend the battery life of the S7 to great lengths. If the S10 can offer the same speedy standby and huge battery life, it’ll beat out most existing netbooks and would be great for a thin, light weight, ‘all day’ computing experience. Viliv is currently quoting the S10 as having 10 hours of battery, and given Viliv’s previous battery life claims I would say this is fairly accurate, and within an hour of realistic usage.

The S10 isn’t 100% official yet, but the one that Chippy looked at in an IDF 09 video hands-on had a 1366×768 resolution screen, which again beats out most of the netbook contenders. Then there is the flexibility that the touchscreen and convertible aspect offer. The majority of netbooks out there today aren’t touchscreen equipped and definitely aren’t convertible. This fact alone puts the S10 in direct competition with devices like the Gigabyte TouchNote [Portal page] and Asus Eee T91 [Portal page].

If the S10 can be competitive in the netbook field and stand its ground against the existing convertible options, I think that it could have a big impact on Viliv as a company getting the company into the eyes of a much broader range than they’ve been used to because previously they’ve been dealing in a rather niche market, and for ultra mobile PC fans out there — some of that additional market may flow through Viliv to their other devices, and introduce new people to the world of UMPCs.

Of course it will all really depend on the price that Viliv picks for the S10. Hopefully it’ll hit low enough to compete with netbooks and will create choice and competition for consumers, while being an impressive debut product for Viliv’s foray into the netbook space. Most of the other players will have some serious catching up to do if the S10 jumps onto the scene with a reasonable price, 10 hour battery life, great keyboard, high-res screen and convertible form factor to boot!

24 Comments For This Post

  1. Ben Lang says:

    New article: S10 could really put Viliv on the map http://bit.ly/Y4pHi

  2. jcd says:

    Ugh… decisional paralysis. I have a Gigabyte T1028X in my shopping cart at Amazon right now which is probably the reason you wrote this article. ;-)

    Do you have an ETA for this device? I’ve seen Q4 a lot, but so far I don’t find it at Dynamism. Also, a word on the device’s upgradability, since I read somewhere the notion that RAM (at least) wasn’t swappable.


  3. Ben says:

    Haha how did I know I’d see one of your comments on this article?

    Viliv is withholding price and availability info for now.

    We’ve seen a few different prototypes of the S10, the one that Chippy looked at in the IDF hand-on appeared to have a RAM access hatch on the bottom, but it is unclear whether or not that it was actually RAM access, and I’ve seen some of the prototypes which lack that hatch completely. I wouldn’t be surprised if the S10 comes with no access hatches to RAM and HDD, just as the S7 did.

  4. Ben says:

    Forgot to add that yes, Q4 was being thrown around a lot as a release for the S10, but other than that they haven’t been any more specific.

  5. alese says:

    Considering the prices of other Viliv devices I really doubt this will compete with netbooks in price. I’m afraid it’s more likely that it’s going to cost something like up to twice the price of regular netbook. And while I’m a big fan of touch screens, I doubt the convertible touch screen will be worth the difference in price for most users…

  6. James Pond says:

    Agreed. I don’t see Villiv sell this device in less than 600€, which is basica

  7. James Pond says:

    Oups, sorry for my previous comment!

    I wanted to say that I agreed and that I don’t see Villiv selling this device for less than 600€ (inc. VAT) which is basically the price of the Gigabyte T1028X.

    Most netbook users/buyers seems to think that the original Asus EeePC T91 is already awfully expensive at 450€, now 500€ for T91MT which is the same but with Windows 7, 32 GB SSD (instead of 16 GB) and multi-touch.

    They just don’t see the point in paying so much just to have a touchscreen layer and a convertible design. And I must say that to some extend, I agree with them. I’m a proud owner and user of a T91 but sometimes I regret that I paid more than the typical netbook for a device with much more gloss on the screen and with a hinge that seems much more weak.

    While both the Gigabyte T1028X and Villiv S10 “fixes” some caveats of the Asus T91, it will still be a hard sell at 600€ for typical netbook users! Even at 550€ or 500€ it will be quite interesting to users already interested in the T91 but not to the typical netbook users.

    Do not forget that today in the netbook arena you can buy a Compaq Mini 311c for less than 350€, which has 11″ 1366×768 screen, nVidia ION GPU, fantastic typing experience, acceptable battery life, easy upgradability. OK it also has some flaws but overall it is a real deal for 350€!

    It would be just a bad idea for Villiv to try to compete with such netbooks instead of keeping a reasonnably fat margin on each device sold.

  8. NobbyNobbs says:

    When taking abou convertible netbboks you shouldn`t forget the intel classmate convertible. It`s the cheapest convertible available right mow and really has superb build quality. And battery life is about 6 hours.

  9. squirrel says:

    What’s the weight?
    Is there multitouch under Win7?

  10. Ben says:

    Haven’t seen anything about a multitouch capable screen at this point unfortunately.

  11. squirrel says:

    And the weight is 1,2 kg?

  12. Lee says:

    Decisions, I have been wrestling with what to buy for months and decided on a hp 5101 netbook. Not a convertible touch screen but I can live without it. It has high resolution screen, built in 3g and 128 gb SSD. Win 7 ultimate runs very well and I get 5-6 hrs of battery life. Viliv 10 if priced right should do well. Last point, what has happened to JKK @ jkkmobile? Is he ill or given up his website reviews? Hope he is ok.

  13. Ben says:

    I think he said he’s been busy with family over the last few days, he’ll be back soon, fear not!

  14. Vakeros says:

    The HP 5101 doesn’t have a high res. screen – but basic 1024×600 which is too low for such a big screen (in my opinion). Minimum should be 1280×960.
    As you got the top of the range model, you would also have paid a similar price to that of the Gigabyte T1028X.
    I think price will be an important factor, because at the prices mentioned ($800) you are in notebook territory.

  15. Brit says:

    what ever happened to the S5 with keyboard device they said was in the works?

  16. Ben says:

    Can you recall where you saw that they said that? I can’t remember anything about an S5 with keyboard officialy from Viliv, just people saying that an S5 with keyboard would be great. Or maybe someone got mixed up and was talking about the S7.

  17. wasd says:


    “And viliv will unveil its new MIDs with 10′ LCD form factor, 4.8′ LCD with keyboard at the viliv hospitality suite in Grand HYATT TAIPEI Hotel. It is for invited guests only.”

  18. lanlanb says:

    Big fan of this form factor, thin and 10 inch with great res and multi (at least I hear there will be one). Price range based on other posts are $570-800’n’change. Like mentioned, comparable to the Gigbayte 1028X. I had the 1028X in sights too, though if i had a choce, would go for the S10 due to its thin form. Still both great choices.

  19. Doug Renz says:

    S10 could really put Viliv on the map | UMPCPortal – Ultra Mobile … http://bit.ly/12bmK6

  20. MIK says:

    uhhhhhhhhhhh habenwill!!! http://bit.ly/1r1PmB *SOFORT*

  21. lee says:

    My HP 5101 has a 1366 x 768 screen resolution.

  22. J says:

    Yes, I agree, this could put Viliv on the map.

    I think Viliv’s biggest weakness is their slow time to market. They need to be faster and not worry about the proprietary software no one cares about or uses.

    They need the RAM to be expandable and have the 2.0ghz version out to market asap. They’ll not only compete with netbooks but with notebooks like the Lenovo x200.

    I can’t imagine anyone paying $800 for a 1gb ram netbook.

  23. Frank M. Land says:

    I bought my GO about a monthe ago and …WOW. I was used to go on trip with my laptop and always complained about the weight and the space. The netbook was really the answer.
    I thought about going MAC with their Macair, but decide against it as I only need a MAC to work at home and in most of the place I go, PC are used so easier to stay PC.
    I like the key board. I was a bit worried about the size and I have relatively big hands. Guess what? So far I haven’t misskeyed.
    The battery life is incredible. When I am not using my GO (during talks etc…) I put in stand by…doing so, I can use it the whole day and even wghen I go back to my hotel, more than 50% of the power is still present.

    So far a very good buy.

  24. Shohimix says:

    Any of you have any idea where I could get the Viliv products either in Taipei or Kaohsiung, if avail what would the price be.
    Many thanks.

    Went to Seoul hoping to get some best deal since the products are made in Korea. Alas, most of the dealers in Yongsan Electronics area have not even heard of the name. What a dissappointment !!

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