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.
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.
The 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.