OQO Model 03 could be on horizon, but its time may have passed

Oqo_03 With no shortage of handheld computers and even smartphones doing their darndest impersonations of tiny computers these days, it's easy to forget about one of the early pioneers. OQO looks to be making a comeback of sorts, or at least its Chinese arm is, with the big hurrah set for Q3 2010. But is anyone still looking for a high-priced, full PC experience to steal time away from their powerful smartphone?

According to the guys over at UMPCPortal, there's a website at www.oqo.cc that looks to be promoting the successor to the original OQO Model 2 and the never-released Model 2+ that was to be the first OQO based on the faster Atom architecture. Apparently the Chinese website went down around the same time the American branch closed up shop, but now they are back and causing a stir.

From the translated info gleaned off the site, it looks like the new Model 03 will be available with four processor options, the 1.2GHz Z515, 1.6GHz Z530, 1.86GHz Z540, and the 2GHz Z550. The latter processor currently resides in certain models of the new Sony Vaio P and would make one killer pocket computer, especially paired with the rest of the hardware specs, including a 128GB SSD, 2GB RAM, and a multi-touch 4.8-inch, 1024×600 LCD screen. There's no shortage of wireless radios either, with WiFi & Bluetooth 2.0 as well as optional 3G.

Now for the bad news, and that's the rumored price. Long considered one of the reasons OQO failed to successfully move units, a high price just will not fly with the bevy of options today, but it seems like OQO might not have learned its lesson. If we're to believe the 31,888 yuan price being listed, which comes out to around $4,700 USD, the Model 03 just might find its potential customers exclaiming "three strikes and you're out."

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Chris King

Chris King is a former contributing editor at Pocketables.