* The device features a touchscreen as well as an alphanuŽmeric keypad
* It runs on Windows Mobile 6.0 professional and comes with a joystick as well as a scrollwheel
* There is no shortage of connectivity options, from Wi-Fi to Bluetooth to mini USB
* One can connect the device to an external projector or moniŽtor to view documents and presentations.
Short of GPS, the power-packed Ultimate 8150 has pretty much got it all, making it a formidable enterprise device to own. The PDA phone category has seen some hectic action in recent times with major players coming out with their verŽsions of devices that will supplant the notebook. And now i-mate has joined the fray with its Ultimate series. The 8150 is one of the crown jewels of the series and considering the number of features it packs in, that is hardly surprising. Mind you, on first glance, the 8150 does not make much of an impact. It looks a trifle bulky, is heavy and while not ugly, will not turn heads.
The 8150 is one of the few enterprise devices that offer a touchscreen as well as a keypad, although its keypad is an alphanumeric one rather than a full QWERTY affair. So one can scribble for detailed notes and use the keys when lesser text is needed. The 2.6-inch display is large enough to make writing an easy task, although we would have preferred a more sturdy stylus. The keys are wide and a bit on the stiff side so they will take some getting used to. There are two navigation options - a joystick embedded on the right side of the keypad (instead of being in the centre, just below the disŽplay) and a scrollwheel on the left side.
The 8150 runs on the Windows Mobile 6 (Professional) OS and comes packed with software, from an office suite (you can view, edit and create files), to a PDF viewer to MSN Messenger to a media player. If there is something you want done, it is a fair chance that the 8150 will be able to do it. Thanks to the touchscreeen, working on documents and spreadsheets presents no problems at all. Even browsing the Net is a pleasant experience, although we would recommend downloading Opera Mini instead of using the installed Internet Explorer.
The device comes with a 2.0-megapixel camera, which takes time to start up but turns in reasonable (but not excepŽtional) results once it does. There is a Windows Media Player for playing multimedia files and the sound quality is quite decent. The display is brilliant, being powered by NVIDIA GoForce 5500 graphics accelerator. Our only complaint was that the device was generally on the slow side, often taking time to respond to commands. Battery life was also a bit disappointing - we needed to recharge it once a day.
For us, one of the most impressive features of the 8150 was the host of connectivity options it offered from Bluetooth to Wi-Fi to USB. A neat touch is the addition of a Wi-Fi button on the left side of the display, which saves one from the process of having to navigate through menus to turn WiŽFi on or off. The device can also be connected to an external monitor or projector via a cable to make presenŽtations or view documents. All of which makes the Ultimate 8150 quite a powerhouse in terms of fea- tures. put off fact that price tag In although a specific been released.
Size: 118.5mm x 60.5mm x 15.5mm
Weight: 152 grams
Memory: 256 MB ROM, 128 MB RAM, Micro SO
Talktime/Standby: Up to 4 hoursl Up to 150 hours Bluetooth/lnfrared: YeslYes
Phonebook Capacity: Shared memory Speakerphone: Yes
Frequency: GSM 850/900/1800/1900
Others: Office Suite, POF reader, Internet Explorer, FM radio, Media player, Wi-FI, mini USB