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Chris Cardell

Detaching the Elonex ONE

Two days ago we unboxed an Elonex ONE for a first look review, you could say the tone was pessimistic and the overall conclusion was one of negativity. However, after detaching the Elonex ONE’s screen which relies more on brute force than any sort of clever mechanism. Detaching transforms the 70s looking laptop to something actually quite stylish. Although the keyboard is quite flat and adds barely any weight or size to the ONE, it suddenly feels much nicer in the hand without the keyboard.

The Sony DPFV700BT 7″ Black Digital Photo Frame currently sells for £134.98 at Amazon, this is £23.98 more than the Elonex ONE and doesn’t enable you to do anything more than display pictures. Sure it’s more compact and most probably more aesthetically pleasing, but it really puts into perspective the value you get with the ONE. We mounted it to a wall to see how it looked, it looked simply great and could easily act as a digital picture frame without much customisation.

Elonex ONE Wall Mounted

You control the mouse through a soft circular trackpad positioned on the back of the screen unlike any other laptop, but identical to the mouse at the bottom of the detachable keyboard. This means that for anyone watching it appears you are controlling the computer with your mind. This mouse is extremely hard to get used to, it can be used in around 3 different ways (it really is an odd way of controlling the mouse), none of which we have mastered yet. Plugging in a USB mouse fixes all this, but adds bulk.

Elonex ONE detached keyboardThe browser supplied is Saramao, this browser seems to be a version of Firefox 2 except without any of its features such as bookmarks, history, tabs, addons or anything else, it simply allows you to browse and change the size of the text. The Word Processor is AbiWord, on this underpowered machine it takes an unreasonable amount of time to load. Once it has loaded use and typing is delayed due to the resources the software requires. AbiWord is a lightweight Word Processor, but on a machine of this power it struggles. Similarly its spreadsheet package Gnumeric struggles in terms of speed. Also available is ONEleafpad, this is simply a notepad and doesn’t contain any of the features of a Word Processor, however there is no lag when typing in this piece of software. There are plenty of basic games, a PDF viewer, dictionary, calculator, photo viewing and editing software, an MP3 player, media player, media sever, messenger client, email client, file manager and updating system.

This device does surprise, its value for money and can provide a solutions to multiple scenarios. If Elonex add touch screen capability (which is actually a lot simpler than you may think) and increase the screen size by 2” without raising the price over £180 then they will have a product that can truly compete with the Asus Eee.

This entry was posted on Thursday, August 7th, 2008 at 4:51 pm GMT. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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  • Michael Sage

    A great review and I agree a great little machine, the issues I have run into all revolve round the browser!

    The lack of flash, ability to connect to secure sites and the lack of Java and Javascript are what spoil it for me.

    Other than that a great electronic notepad and pdf reader all for just over £100.



  • Kevin

    Well…I got my dispatch notification this morning, so it’ll hopefully arrive on monday at the latest…

    Am not expecting too much from the machine, but as long as I can run Firefox and glubble on it, it’ll be suitable for my purposes…

  • DoesWhat
  • Kevin

    So, after a 5 month wait, I got mine this morning, it boots, it’s a bit slow, and the UI isn’t great (I’m a long-term Linux user, so it’s not that I don’t like what Linux looks like).

    Sadly, I suspect it’s going back to Elonex, the keyboard rattles when picked up, and I don’t think that’s normal :-)

    I run Ubuntu netbook-remix on my EEE and it’s a lot better, I’d be impressed if it’d run on the ElonexONE+ but, hey…

    I got the “starter pack” and a wrist-vault too…

  • Gary Whitehead

    Got mine. Love the hardware. I agree about the keyboard. Used it for setup and disconnected it. Now, if I can only get the hang of that trackpad…

    Haven’t managed to get the wifi to connect at all(everything else I’ve bought just worked-hmm) but wired it works straight away.

    Autoupdate just gives me a blank screen with PackageMgr in the titlebar.

    Not a lot of info about on the net as yet. I wait for other users experiences.

  • Geo

    Got my One+ this morning.

    Don’t have a clue about Linux (Linos) but have been digging about in the file system. Can’t find a console/terminal but can get to the root of the drive.

    File > My Files opens a file browser that will let you see into all the folders from Root down after hitting Up a few times.

    What can I do now?

  • Mark Robinson

    Hi got my elonex one+ today and got to say it is good but i got the same thing with autoupdate to and i wish that elonex put the opera browser on. It has it on the nintendo ds without the flash player and it can get on more website’s then the browser that came with the elonex one.

  • elonex1t

    There’s a tip on how to get to xterm on the Elonex One at:

  • Griffiths

    The customer service from Elonex is Rubbish and I assume if my order for a Onet ever turns up the item will be like the service -rubbish! I reversed in March paying my £10 paid balance at the beginning of July and was told delivered in 30 days – no chance! Yet another email, yet another delay. Guaranteed delivery by the start of the new school term. As at 28th August they have advised me they are still only in the checking stage! What rubbish! They are now stating delivery during first week in September. I don’t believe a word out of Elonex’s mouth! What a tin pot company – I am now happy to pay the extra and go and get myself an Asus – at least that way I am guaranteed some decent service – and probably a better product – buyers beware. Very disappointed 8 year old son who never got his birthday present after all! THANKS Elonex.

  • Sam Liddicott

    Maybe this can replace my DLINK NSLU2 – it has more memory and wlan….


  • Eryl

    My One t+ arrived last week and initial thoughts were it looked good for £119. I could not get the wifi to work at home despite trying evey setting under the sun. On the Lan it was fine. 40 seconds to boot up and away. Logged onto Elonex and did the update via software installer and thought this might fix the Wifi but alas no. However I stayed in a hotel and used the Wifi to connect to the Web via a standard non encrypted link but then a username and password front web page. Everything worked well as I was able to log onto the company Web exchange server and do email etc. Could log onto my home PC via ‘Logmein’ and could open up Exchange and look at my emails however I could not type or send one. Might just have been a quirk so will try again if I can get on line. Used it in a coffee bar as well via another non WEP / WPA link and again it did the simple things well. However………

    I CANT GET IT TO LOG ON TO WEP and WPA ENCRYPTED NETWORKS and it is driving me nuts. I rang the help desk who are very busy (not a good sign) and they rang me back the next day. They know they have an issue and say keep looking for an update. The manual is too basic and the support Web site is rubbish. They said just keep looking for an update but gave no time lines. I saw on this page if you use 11.b only that might work but my router will only do 11.b & g or 11.g only and playing with these will not fix it.

    Has anybody got any bright ideas. I even turned off the WEP for a while on my home network and it still won’t work ….

    I am restricted to coffee shops, hotels and my desk with the LAN.

    Help !


    i was offered the elonex onet+ as the upgrade from an elonex one+.
    as no picture was show but the extra memory and ram was making it worthwhile and a free upgrade i thought it would be ideal.
    to be quite honest i thought they were giving it to the customers that had been waiting a while.
    when it finally arrived after 5 months i found it was completley different in design from the one+ it didnt have the keyboard removal option/tablet option.
    it was just like a childs toy laptop and looked really naf and cheap.
    i contacted Elonex and after being bumped to the despatch shop and back to the Head office a few times i finally got some sense and arranged an exchange for the one+ which although is slower as the tablet/bluetooth options on it.
    i snet back the original one and today have just received the one plus i will let you know how i get on.

    NB: there is a patch on the site for those who cannot get connected to the web which elonex told me the patch fixes this problem.

  • stacey

    First of all it took 3 months for mine to get here i wanted it for my daughter who was starting college, when i finally received my laptop it didn’t work through whatever connection i tried, i’ve thried euthernet, wireless and even a dongle with no luck whatsoever……….

    I’ve been onto elonex everyday to get some help but they have no idea what the hell they are doing.

    If anyone has any solutions to this please let me know on this space


  • steven guest

    phone jamie at their head office as the shop just doesnt want to help.
    Tel: 0871 222 3456

  • Joseph Felts

    Aaarrrggghh!! A disaster!! The wait for it was something, goodness knows how I found the patience. Having upgraded us tot he OneT fromt he One for waiting, they should have equally upgraded us to the OneT+ for waiting even further. I mentioned this to Elonex and got a firm but polite ‘no’.

    When it was eventually delivered, I was very sceptical. It was so small, although I had notice of the measurements I still felt it would be bigger than it was. OK, so I unpacked it and read the instructions, put it in for charge, tried to turn it on and it wouldnt fire up. I felt it would with the charger connected and on but I decided to leave it overnight.

    When I came to it in the morning and tried to turn it on, it was a case of try and try again. You have to (or I had to) hold the power button for one second and let go, as opposed to pressing it instantly. Eventually it came on and I managed to get around and connect it via Wi-Fi. However it was as poorly developed as one stated above. The package was rubbish.

    “The lack of flash, ability to connect to secure sites and the lack of Java and Javascript are what spoil it for me.”

    This is the closest to my opinion. Many sites just came up with a non-script error to which I had no alternative but to click ‘yes’ to get going. I expected it to be better to compete with other laptops as well as along the price range. The battery would last about half an hour before requiring charging and my one needed a charge almost every time I turned it on, despite having left it with a full charge previously.

    I had files on my USB stick, when I connected it to the Elonex, I couldn’t get it to transfer, much less open. I downloaded programs but couldn’t get to open them either. The only good thing that has come from being involved with Elonex is the refund (I had ordered three of them and all three were faulty, with the batteries not holding its charge at all after a while). They were very rapid with the refund for which I am grateful because I would hate to endure fighting for it for a long period to equal the long period of waiting for it in the first place. Shambles. Will not be purchasing anything from Elonex again, regardless what it is.

  • Ben Poole

    The Elonex One is a total load of ********!! and you are in idiot if you buy one!

  • Best NETBOOK

    Well, it should be obvious to you by no that the Elonex is lacking. Get an Acer, an Asus a Samsung, an MSI or an HP instead.
    If customer service is important, avoid Dell.

  • Joseph Felts

    Yes, it’s obvious when you’ve purchased it and have it in possession. I have returned all three of mine and purchased two laptops for the children. We had three Elonexes’ as my wife and I switch between the laptop and PC, while my two daughters can do the same with their PC, and my son had his own laptop.

    Now those horrid Elonex things have been returned and refunded, we have bought two bigger, better packed laptops for the children, and should be buying a third for ourselves within a month or so. That is far better than enduring the Elonexes’, mark my words. An absolute horiffic technological experience.

  • Ashleigh

    Look, i think that, the elonex one is probably better for the younger people. I mean, you cant download anything, its battery times rubbish, and you can watch any form of animation, at all. i say give it to, at the most, An 11 year old.And the instructions are rubbish. Also it has a play tab but theres no games.

  • karen

    my daughters have owned these for 6 months now and at first were extatic with them but now realize how poor quality there are. one of them has been returned and replaced twice due to software errors (this was in the first 7 weeks) and now the hinges have siezed on both and the virtual keyboards dont stay on screen and are totally useless, the tech. support have been a complete waste of time they dont respond to contact now and refuse to do anything about the faults even though they are only 6 months old. i wish i had never wasted my money on these and had bought better to start with

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