Microsoft working on tiny Haiku PC

Posted by spy on June 7 2006, 6:13 PM. Posted in UMPC (Origami).

The launch of the ultra-mobile PC hasn't quenched Microsoft's thirst to find a blockbuster product in the portable PC space. In fact, the company has continued to work on another mini-Tablet PC concept, the Haiku, and expects it on the market within the next few years. "We'd like to see them out in the $500 to $700 range. The closer to $500 the better," said Otto Berkes, general manager of Microsoft's Ultra Mobile PC operations, on the sidelines of a conference in Taipei on Wednesday. The Haiku device he showed off at the Via Technology Forum was basically a display screen about the size of a paperback book. The idea is to use screen input methods to work the device, which would include a version of Microsoft's OS for Tablet PCs. The original Haiku device was shown off by Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates during WinHEC (Windows Hardware Engineering Conference) last year. At the time, the company projected it might ship in 2007. But this year's launch of the ultra-mobile PC, code-named Origami, prompted speculation that Origami was the portable PC of choice for Microsoft, and it might drop other such projects. That's not the case, according to Berkes. "We don't think [the Haiku] is feasible today, but we're very excited about the roadmap [Via Technologies] shared that will make this possible in a few years," he said. Via competes with Intel and Advanced Micro Devices in the microprocessor business, and in recent years has focused more on chips for portable devices. With these companies developing ever-smaller chips that run cooler, use less power and require less space inside gadgets, developing portable devices such as the Haiku becomes more feasible, Berkes said. Continue at source