Smartphones: The Only Computers We Need
Two years ago, ARM lead strategist James Bruce told WIRED that he sees smartphones as the primary computers for many, with PCs and laptops being pushed back to a secondary role. He is right in most cases – but not all. Smartphones are perfect to read the news, play casino games at Wild Jack Mobile, keep up with social media updates and keep in touch with our friends and families. But they have some inherent shortcomings – their small screen and their lack of input devices, among others – that make them a less-than-ideal device for work. But this will change soon – in a few years, smartphones may become the only computers we need.
We’ve already covered Sentio’s Superbook last year. Unfortunately, the device suffered quite a few delays, missing its May 2017 delivery deadline – but it has apparently solved all of its issues (which, according to their website, had a lot to do with making sure the device is compliant with various regulations). According to their website, the manufacturing for the Superbook should be done, and the first backers in the Asia-Pacific region should lay their hands on their brand new Superbooks by the end of this February, and European and North American customers should have them by the middle of March.
For those of you who don’t remember, the Sentio Superbook is a laptop shell built to accommodate any Android smartphone running at least Lollipop with at least 1.5 GB of RAM and USB-OTG support. It has an 11.6″ LCD screen, a built-in power bank, and a full-size keyboard. It is available in two variants – the standard one with a 768p LCD screen and a premium version with a Full HD IPS LCD 1080P (1920×1080) screen and a backlit keyboard.
At the same time, other manufacturers are also attacking (or creating?) the smartphone-to-PC market. French startup Miraxess has a product similar to the Superbook but with a different set of features and capabilities. It only works with smartphones that support DisplayPort over USB-C, and this has reduced the number of phones it will work with. But it also supports Windows 10-powered smartphones with Continuum, and it works as a display for Raspberry Pi and computer sticks. It has a lightweight aluminum body, a battery pack good for up to 10 hours of work or play, several USB ports, and HDMI output, among others. The Mirabook will be shipped sometime this April or May.
Last but not least, let us mention the simplest and most intuitive way to turn a smartphone into a desktop computer: Huawei’s PC Mode. Presented with the Chinese smartphone maker’s Mate 10 Pro smartphone, PC mode will simply turn the phone into a desktop PC by connecting it to a screen. The phone itself will function as a trackpad and a keyboard, and it also supports Bluetooth peripherals like keyboards and mice. The PC Mode is built right into the phone’s EMUI 8.0 interface, so switching to it will be quick, seamless, and simple.