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VERTICAL: Socket Mobile unveils new Handheld Computer for Business Mobility Markets
Posted by Arne Hess - on Wednesday, 07.03.07 - 16:58:54 CET under 02 - Windows Mobile News - Viewed 10989x
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Socket Communications, Inc. today unveiled its new handheld mobile computer specifically designed to make essential business mobile productivity solutions possible and affordable. The company's extensive line of mobile data collection and networking connectivity peripherals combined with the new handheld make Socket a one-stop supplier of mobile computing hardware systems.
The new Socket SoMo 650 is built to address the market that exists between consumer-oriented PDAs and heavy duty industrial devices. The sleek, durable device uses a touch screen and is based on Microsoft's Windows Mobile 5.0 for Pocket PC operating system to ensure the highest level of mobile application compatibility and gives workers a familiar computing environment.

The SoMo 650 handheld computer's flexible design enables ease of customization and integration with Socket and third party peripherals and information systems – extending the lifecycle of the product and reducing total cost of ownership. The company will launch a new extended, multi-year service warranty on the device as well as on many of its higher-end peripheral products.

The SoMo 650 features a durable form factor designed specifically to withstand multiple drops from one meter onto vinyl-covered concrete and includes business class 802.11b/g Wi-Fi technology to provide fastest roaming for superior in-building/campus environments and VoIP applications. In addition, the SoMo 650 features Bluetooth 2.0 with enhanced data rate; one of the most complete libraries of Bluetooth profiles for maximum support of third party peripherals.
Reinforced CompactFlash and SDIO slots enables expandability and provide better protection for peripheral devices. 128 MB SDRAM and 256 MB Flash memory enables users to work with multiple applications and the Marvell processor operating at 624 MHz ensures better application responsiveness. The high-capacity, rechargeable lithium-ion battery powers the most demanding applications; an optional extended life battery is also available. GSM or UMTS is left and not supported by the SoMo 650.

"Mobile computing systems available today do not meet the mobility needs of small- to medium-sized companies or many business units within larger enterprises," said Kevin Mills, president and chief executive officer of Socket Mobile. "Currently companies need to choose between devices that are often too costly and over featured or inexpensive and under featured, which results in mobility solutions being overly difficult to justify and deploy. The SoMo 650 is designed to change all of that, since it's designed and developed for the currently underserved business mobility market."

Socket Mobile plans to leverage more than 100 value added reseller partners to target current and prospective customers seeking cost effective mobile computing solutions to deliver applications for inventory control, sales force automation, patient tracking, asset management and merchandising. The company's primary focus will be on the healthcare, automotive, life sciences and retail markets in which workers have a need for efficient data collection, real-time information management and applications in the field.

"The business mobility market represents approximately 10.9 million organizations and 69 million mobile workers. However, with penetration of mobility solutions at only 25 percent, most organizations still rely on manual, paper-based systems that contribute to greater error frequency and highly inefficient processes," said David Krebs, director of the Mobile & Wireless Practice, Venture Development Corporation.

"With the Windows Mobile operating system, Socket Mobile is helping its customers attain an easily deployable, manageable solution that increases mobile productivity," said Chris Hill, group product manager at Microsoft Corp. "Windows Mobile brings a familiar experience to the small screen, helping mobile professionals stay connected to important data wherever they are."

The SoMo 650 is the first in a family of handheld computing products Socket will rollout in 2007 and is available through Socket distribution channels, resellers and vertical industry partners in the U.S. as well as selected countries in Asia Pacific and Europe with an MSRP of US$ 648. Socket is on track to ship the SoMo 650 during the second quarter, starting with limited production in April and mass production in May. The handheld computer will be available in various packaged configurations that may include a wall charger, docking cradle and carrying case.

Cheers ~ Arne

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