They have shrunk a full Windows PC to palm size. Soon, this may include the screen too.
May 21 2018: The catchphrase 'Small is beautiful' coined by German economist E.F. Schumacher, 35 years ago, has been embraced by the PC industry today, which is struggling to sell conventional desktop sized boxes. As high end smartphones and tablets compete to offer traditional PC functionality, manufacturers seem to have decided: "If you can't fight 'em, join 'em"! They have succeeded in shrinking basic PC hardware to a portable, palm-sized package -- with everything, that is, short of keyboard and display.
Called mini PC or nano PC, these full function standalone devices with onboard memory and storage are not to be confused with so called Thin Clients or Thin PCs, which work only in tandem with a central main PC and have no local storage.|
Granted, mini PCs makes some compromises: Most of them offer small on board solid state storage and like many of the ultra light laptops, you need to store most of your files and tools in the cloud.
Brands like Zotac Gigabyte have been offering paperback book -sized mini PCs with almost-desktop storage -- 500 GB. Their relatively larger size in the mini-PC ecosystem allows them to pack in the latest high end PC processor. The latest Zotac 9TX 1070, has an additional Nvidia GeForce graphics chip and 1 TB of on board storage -- better than most desktop PCs.
Intel has been promoting these shrunken PC form factors with its designs called NUC -- New Unit of Computing. Dozens of NUC mini PCs can be bought online at Amazon and other sites either as kits or assembled units over a very wide price range from Rs 9000 to Rs 1 lakh and more. The new additions this year -- NUC8i7 HVK and HNK are tailored for gamers and are Virtual Reality-ready.|
Indian makers like RDP and HD Workstation -- both based in Hyderabad -- have a wide range of mini PCs and Thin clients on offer.
Perhaps the most exciting offering in this class in recent weeks is the Liva Q from Taiwan-based Elitegroup Computer Systems ( ECS) -- the world's smallest palm sized pocket PC capable of displaying 4K ultra high definition video. It fits -- literally -- in palm of your hand and weighs just 260 grams. There is a HDMI port which you can connect to a display or a TV; 2 USB ports for keyboard/mouse; a micro SD clot for enhancing the on board 32 GB with an additional 128 GB. The system comes with 4 GB of RAM and a mains supply cord. A VESA Mounting plate and screws allow you to attach the LivaQ to the back of a monitor if you choose. While the basic unit costs Rs 13,500, you can also order it with Windows 10 home pre installed for Rs 2000 extra. For Internet you can either use the LAN port or the built-in WiFi ( 11ac), while Bluetooth is also available..... all in all a truly power-packed dynamo of a device. I would recommend spending another thousand rupees or so on a mini keyboard-mouse combo.
This is the first mini PC I have tried that let me display a 4K video file from YouTube absolutely without jitter... small wonder indeed! ANAND PARTHASARATHY
A upcoming crowd-sourced Mini PC has integrated a display screen Read here