Hewlett-Packard is launching a new pocket PC this week, designed by UK product design consultancy Alloy.
The Jornada 540 Series colour pocket PC is one of the first palmtop devices to use the Microsoft operating platform. It runs new Microsoft Pocket PC software as well as packages such as Word and Excel, and offers Internet and MP3 digital audio capabilities in a small, handheld unit.
The Farnham-based product design group was originally appointed by the computer giant 12 months ago and spent six months developing the final design.
“The constraints on the design were considerable, simply in terms of packing all the elements into a small box measuring 130mm by 78mm. At its widest point it is only 20mm thick. The great thing about it is the design of its metal case and its rubber grips for holding on to,” says Alloy director Nina Warburton.
The Pocket PC uses anodised alloy and rubber to create a tough shell, with a textured surface for extra grip. Alloy’s design also features an integrated lid that distinguishes it from rival products created by Palm, she says.
Warburton adds: “It is designed to be handheld and has a virtual keyboard, which was part of Hewlett-Packard’s brief .”