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Fwd: 8.9" CT-PC89E ARM netbook .... UPDATE 04 FEB 2010 22.10



hi folks this is from adam a few hours ago.

it's very exciting, esp. for me to hear that it was china telecom that
initially commissioned the design, because that means a 3G modem was
part of the initial requirements!  but bless 'em the smaller volumes
right now they just haven't been able to get the purchasing power, to
get the lower-cost LCDs.

basically as it's very new to them they really need our help and want
our feedback, to make it a better product, which is why they're happy
to put engineers on the task of modifying them.  i can guess what
they're doing: they're having to create a small circuit to power the
backlight on the LCD: all LCD panels are different, damn it.  then
they will redesign the PCB to incorporate the new circuit... but not
right now! :)

so, i think we have quite a lot of leverage: let's hope that china
telecom actually gave them the linux source code rather than just
dropped a hairy binary tarball in their laps and let them get on with
it.

i've asked adam to find out if the 3G modem "socket" is a PCI-e: there
are several USB-based 3G PCI-e modems out there, some of them even
with GPS.  i bought an adapter a few months ago:
http://www.hwtools.net/Adapter/USBMA.html
so i know that these PCI-e 3G modems are actually USB modems NOT
repeat NOT gigabit-PCIe x1 or x4 or whatever.

and it _juuust_ so happens that i've been negotiating for several
weeks with a huawei 3G PCI-e modem supplier... :)

so this could actually turn out to be an incredibly exciting little
machine - we'll just have to see how it goes.  ok enough from me.
please forgive adam not being technical, he's learning what to look
out for as he goes along.

l.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Adam Gill <madallig@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, Feb 4, 2010 at 3:45 PM
Subject: Re: 8.9" CT-PC89E ARM netbook .... UPDATE 04 FEB 2010 22.10
To: Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton <luke.leighton@googlemail.com>


Hi Luke , ................ please forward

I see there's a lot of emails coming through now - you need 25
netbooks now? - I'll check tomorrow but I think may not be possible as
I will be getting the 20 pcs on Tuesday now. They are full on testing
these netbooks and I think we are lucky to get them before Chinese New
Year

All the PayPal stuff I'll do on Saturday.

We are really the first of two customers ..... so we are really in at
the beginning. Apparently, they say this netbook was first made by
another factory for China Telecom and so from my understanding - they
have taken bits from the original 8.9" CT netbook and made a fusion
with the 7000E with their own sourced display.

The engineers have been making their own hand soldered PCBA to make
the correct connection for the display with the motherboard.

I have taken photos of all the interesting bits etc and I will email
these on Sat ...

Observations & other comments:

1. Web browsing not bad
2. WiFi easily connects
3. 2 x USB
4. Mini LAN connection
5. A mini USB but to me it looks like a mini VGA as the monitor symbol
was next to this slot
6. 3G sim card slot - the slots are on the motherboard if you want to
add a 3G module
7. 3.5mm Audio & Mic slot
8. Mic on the keyboard surface
9. The power charger will be the US style as its the lightest as we
are right on the limit for weight
10. If you want to upgrade to 512 RAM they say it can be done for a
few US$ more - and will do with larger orders
11. SO-DIMM - I asked about this - still waiting for answer from engineer ....
12. I tried to connect my Nokia 5800 via USB to the netbook to make a
GPRS dial up connection *99#  ..... I was almost
connected via the network configuration they have!! .. but not enough
time to focus on this ...
13. The web cam slot does not have a camera in it but it will - all
the configuration is for a web cam - not enough time right now!!
They said it is possible to include the web cam in the unit cost in
future if larger quantities are ordered.
14.  Innolux display - I asked again for the model number - but they
could not give me the part no.
15. Software - there are some basic programs there, enough to get started
16. The battery is short life with full screen light - but you can
down the light quite low to save battery life ...

All in all I was much more impressed than I was expecting - I don't
like their version of Linux - I will try to install another once I get
my two net books ..

The factory is interested in getting feedback and how to improve this
netbook. So please give me a list when you all have had a good going
over it!

Cheers!
Adam


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