The 10 Hottest Linux Powered Gadgets
In recent years, we have witnessed an almost prolific resurgence of the Linux Kernel. Easily re-purposed by companies and free of licensing and cost, the open-source system is continuously being integrated into new consumer electronics.
Linux has become so ubiquitous in fact, that many of you may already own Linux-based gadgets without even knowing it!
- Aigo Mobile Internet Device
The first Mobile Internet Device to be announced, the Aigo MID has a 4.8 inch screen (800 by 480), Intel Z500 Atom Processor, WiFi, 3.5G HSDPA and GPS. It weighs just 352g and runs on Midinux 2.0 which has large icons for its touch interface. MIDs fill the gap between that of PDAs and UMPCs, they are faster and have a wider array of applications in a slightly larger package. However, reviewers note that the Lithium Ions last for only 2 hours. Suitable for those tired of slow PDAs with expensive propreitary software who are looking for a more familiar Windows or Linux environment.
- Nokia N810 Internet Tablet
The third version of Nokia’s popular Internet Tablet, the N810 is actually smaller than the N800. However, despite it’s diminutive size Nokia still managed to squeeze in a GPS receiver. It’s built in webcam, Opera browser and GPS makes it an excellent travel guide and leisure companion. Nokia’s Internet Tablets currently have quite a large Geek following, so there’s plenty of 3rd party apps to download and tryout. If you’re itching to try Google’s new mobile OS, you can now also install Android onto the N810. Definitely for the Geeky, but simple and cool enough for the casual user.
- Asus Eee Box
The Asus Eee Box is equipped with a 1.6Ghz Atom processor, Linux (or Windows XP) and costs just US$269 for a minimum of 1GB RAM, 80GB HDD and Wireless-N. It also has a DVI port for a monitor and the usual array of USB and ethernet ports. However, it does not have an optical drive. The main advantage of the Eee Box is it’s power consumption which is 1/5 that of a traditional desktop. Asus positioned it as a good buy for those with tight pockets (and space) or environmentalists concerned about electrical wastage.
- Asus Eee PC 901/1000/1000H
The Eee PC 901, 1000 and 1000H models are a welcome improvement over the 701 and 900. They clock in at higher processor speeds and longer battery lifetimes (4 to 7 hours) thanks to the Intel N270 Atom 1.6Ghz Processor. The 1000 and 1000H models are also equipped with a larger 40GB Solid State Disk and 80GB Hard Disk, respectively. Weight: 1.17kg, 1.25kg. 1.45kg, respectively. An excellent travel companion for those needing a lightweight, compact subnotebook that packs a lot of juice for the road.
- OpenMoko FreeRunner Smartphone
The FreeRunner is OpenMoko’s attempt at making the mobile phone market as open as the PC industry has been. The smart phone runs entirely on Linux and is fully customizable on both the software and hardware levels. Heck, it even comes with the OS source files and interfacing data cables. So far, sales have been pretty good and the FreeRunner has sold out. The perfect device for students learning how to program a phone with Linux, as well as for seasoned Super Geeks.
- Motorola Ming A1600
The Ming A1600 has started shipping in China, but we can expect it to arrive soon in other parts of the world. It is equipped with GPS, handwriting recognition and a 3.2-megapixel camera with business card reader. The phone has a quad-band GSM/GPRS Radio that supports Edge networks. It also supports 4GB of MicroSD storage and has Bluetooth. The Ming’s suave black curves and curvaceous body would appeal to fashion conscious business people. Whilst its Linux OS would allow the power-user to install all sorts of 3rd party apps.
- Archos 605 WiFi
The perfect alternative to an iPod Touch, the Archos WiFi sports a large sharp display with an excellent web browser. The device also supports smooth full screen video playback, an excellent choice for an Apple-averse media hoarder.
- Mvix MX-760HD Wireless HD Media Center
The Mvix 1080p Media Center features high performance networking and hi-definition playback with support for a tremendous range of file formats. It’s huge internal HDD provides ample room for your entire media collection. The device also supports content streaming from your PC to your home theatre/stereo via a wireless network. The perfect solution for bringing what’s on your PC to the living room widescreen, in High-Def!
- Sonos Digital Music System
With the Sonos, you can play music wireless all over your home. Just place Sonos Zone Bridges wherever you want music to play. You can play the same song in all rooms or different songs in each room. The system is controlled wirelessly via the color-screen remote and each Zone Bridge connects back to the main base station via your home’s WiFi network. Perfect for transforming your home into a musical wonderland.
Base Price: US$999, Additional Zone Bridges: US$99 Each
- Garmin Nuvi880
The Garmin Nuvi880 works just like any other Garmin Receiver, albeit its running Linux. With all the hacks and custom maps going for the Garmin Community right now, we just have to wonder what manner of ungodly innovation a Linux powered version will inspire! A solid GPS navigation solution that is proven and reliable, and now poised to have even more going for it.