Sharp Zaurus C700. Getting closer and closer to the ideal.

Well, I finally got to the Sharp Zaurus SL-C700 PDA, a new product from a Japanese company that continues the popular line of Linux-based PDAs. As before, an interesting and ambiguous device came out of the bowels of the company.

Sharp's computer can only compete with Hi-End pocket computers and, probably, the closest model in its class is the Sony Clie NZ90. Both of these PDAs have a clamshell design, similar in many respects, a built-in hardware keyboard, and a high-resolution screen. Although Sony will have a richer bundle, users will also have a 2-megapixel digital camera and Bluetooth (often to the detriment of the overall functionality of the PDA). Zaurus cannot boast of such a variety, although it is not far behind its Asian relative in price.

First things first.

Let's try to start the review with the most important thing - with the packaging. I really liked it, first of all, for its size: the box is slightly larger than the PDA itself. Only a PDA, a cable with a power adapter, a CD and liquid documentation fit in there. And it's all pretty tight.

It should be said that almost all the inscriptions on the box are made in Japanese, well, except for the name of the PDA and the manufacturer's company. Unusual. By the way, Sony, in the latest models of PDAs, has also taken the path of reducing the boxes of their PDAs, for example, in the SJ-33 and SJ-22 models, the boxes are much smaller than the packages of previous models. The Zaurus does not come with a cradle, which is strange on the one hand, since the computer clearly belongs to the "higher league", on the other hand, it is logical, since there has always been a problem for such a folding design with cradles: what was given with the Psion Revo keyboard PDA it was, in my opinion, too cumbersome (for example, I don’t have that much space next to the computer), and the solution presented with the Sony NZ-90, of course, strikes with the depth of design thought, but it is clearly not suitable for normal comfortable daily use ...

Sharp decided to play on the same thing as Sony - to make a pocket computer folding and "stuffing" it with a hardware keyboard.

Only, unlike Sony Sharp, it unfolds and rotates along the wide end and, depending on the position of the screen, changes the orientation and the picture on the monitor.

Reorientation occurs automatically - the user does not need to climb anywhere.

However, the flip function is also available from the soft menu, so you can flip the screen at any time you want.

What I liked about Sharp was the feel of the unit. All the details are surprisingly tightly fitted to each other, everything is in its place. If Sony, in my opinion, looked rather flimsy and bulky (of course, the NZ-90 model is available), then Sharp, with large sizes, seems more compact and, for some reason, more reliable.

It is nice to take it in your hands, and when you turn the screen, there is no feeling that it is about to fall off: the hinges are quite tight and the screen is fixed in extreme positions with perceptible clicks. So that an inexperienced user does not inadvertently break the mechanism, there is even a small instruction with pictures on the side of the screen.

Sharp SL-C700 looks more like a tiny laptop - you expect to see a familiar Windows interface on the screen (advanced Linux users and fans will forgive me).

In their "adult" places there are both expansion slots and connectors for connecting peripherals and cables.

Perhaps, for complete resemblance to a laptop, it lacks only a small track pad or a small mouse, but this is already from the realm of fantasy :-). The body of the SL-C700 is made of lacquered silver plastic, very smooth and pleasant to the touch, though it tends to slip out of hands at every opportunity, and the PDA weighs a lot - 225 grams. Apparently, the decision not to make the case metal was determined, first of all, by the desire not to make the computer heavier.

The keyboard is good, but not as good as it could be. I have several complaints about this. It is made in the form of one large plastic sticker with convex buttons and logical areas marked with color, which will undoubtedly make life easier for the user.The buttons even have special protrusions for the blind typing method, and I, with small, in fact, fingers, could not fit into the size of the keyboard, so the calculation, most likely, was made specifically for elegant Japanese hands. The buttons are pressed very softly, which is not typical for such keyboards, but since they have practically no vertical travel, this keyboard cannot pretend to be anything serious. More sense even from the new Sony keyboard, presented in the NZ-90 and TG-50 models. There, however, the creators were ruined by something else - a small size. But the Sharp keyboard, in principle, can be Russified. At a minimum, you can re-stick the entire sticker with a different layout. In a PDA from Sony, this, in my opinion, cannot be done in principle ...

There are few hardware buttons other than the keyboard: the scroll wheel and the double button "OK" and "Cancel" - confirmation and cancellation of the action, located directly above the "wheel".

These buttons are needed, first of all, in order to somehow communicate with the PDA in its "keyboardless" form, when the screen is unfolded and spread out so that it covers the keyboard. That's when this whole control group is right under the user's thumb, although you can contrive and use these buttons on the ajar keyboard. Also, the most important button, “Power”, is adjacent to the block of control keys.

Sharp is equipped with two expansion slots: CompactFlash and SD, which is moderately fashionable and quite functional. From the wireless connection, only the infrared port will please users, although, with so many slots, wireless communication can be implemented using expansion cards.

There are also two LEDs on the case that notify you of the arrival of new e-mail messages and the process of charging the battery.

Special mention deserves a screen with a decent resolution of 640 by 480 pixels, with a diagonal of 3.7 inches. The screen is wonderful, bright and clear, ensuring readability from any viewing angle. In it, Sharp first used Continuous Grain Silicon (CG-Silicon) technology, when an electronics substrate is mounted in the glass itself. This provides excellent brightness, but also has some disadvantages. The fact is that this screen, in fact, is a regular active matrix, as in most laptops, that is, it is not transflective and cannot reflect sunlight and thus ensure readability in natural light conditions. As a result, for example, on the street, you can hardly see anything in this PDA. The maximum brightness of the display hurts the eyes, and you can work normally only when the brightness value is set somewhere in the middle of the scale. This mode of operation also significantly reduces power consumption.

At the bottom or side of the screen (depending on which side you look at) there is also a small panel with touch buttons that bring up the main applications or return the user to the application manager. Moreover, the icons are slightly rotated and are read both in the vertical position of the screen, and in the horizontal one. The only inconvenient thing is that these buttons are not highlighted in any way and in low light they simply get lost against the background of a bright screen.

The trouble with such a screen is that with such a resolution, a magnifying glass should be included in the standard package of the PDA. Such a resolution looks good and harmonious only on screens with a larger physical size. Sharp Zaurus especially suffers from fonts that are so small that you have to constantly squint and bring your eyes closer to the screen itself.

At the same time, if, for example, it is possible to read something at home or in the office, then in a car or other transport, when everything is already jumping, you can not even try to make out something on the screen - it will not work. Of course, the creators of this PDA also thought about the function of hardware image scaling, only it works as it wants - it enlarges everything except fonts, and this is despite the fact that many programs ignore it altogether. Working in a mode where the height of the characters barely exceeds a millimeter is not only difficult, but is a form of mockery. In principle, you can download enlarged English and Japanese fonts from the Internet, but with Russian ones, I'm afraid until this "rolls", which is a pity, it is the resolution that can become a serious obstacle to buying this PDA.

Sharp's battery is removable. This is a 950mAh Li-ion battery. This size is more or less standard for most PDAs and should provide an acceptable runtime. I didn’t notice the backup battery, but when pulling out the main user settings, they are saved, so we can assume that it is there, only hidden from the user’s eyes somewhere inside. In principle, of course, it's nice that Sharp took care of its users by making the battery removable, because lithium-ion batteries, regardless of the mode of use, do not live more than 2-3 years. Apparently, it is believed that a pocket computer of this level is purchased for a longer period. The battery, however, behaves strangely. So, for example, an LED can show only one stage - charging, but whether the battery is fully charged, each time you have to determine empirically. If the adapter is plugged into a socket, the light will glow orange, regardless of the battery status. At the same time, if the charge is very small, then the computer, after several timid warnings, simply turns off and no longer shows signs of life. Only the power adapter can revive it, and even then, in this case, the system is completely rebooted. The system charge indicator is also imperfect and is a picture of the battery (in full screen) with a schematic indication of the charge level.

And that's it - and no numbers. Only laconic type signatures: Battery condition is good. Surprisingly stupid implementation.

Software

This is the part that causes the most complaints about this pocket computer. On the one hand, Linux is good and, most importantly, quite justified from the point of view of Sharp. This operating system is freely distributed and the company's desires: a) to stand out from the crowd and b) not to pay money for a license are absolutely understandable. On the other hand, in terms of the general level of implementation, pocket Linux somehow falls short of its competitors - Palm and Pocket PC. It seems that everything is fine, but some minor flaws spoil the whole picture. One of these shortcomings, as I said above, is the lack of a magnifying glass in the PDA package, since without it nothing can be read due to tiny fonts. , in principle, made by the operating system and serious hardware characteristics looks very strange. It's nice that now the operating system is Russified, and completely, which makes Sharp a rather attractive model for the Russian market.

The pocket computer takes an unnaturally long time to boot - about 2 minutes, and this happens with every reboot, regardless of whether it is "hard" or "soft". The screen glows with a milky white light, the Zaurus logo and inscriptions appear on it, apparently intended to brighten up the expectation, or at least tell what the CCP is thinking at the moment. Alas, they are all exclusively in Japanese, so at the time of loading, all you can do to entertain yourself is admiring the extraordinary brightness and fantastic clarity of the display.

As expected, Zaurus C700 is equipped with almost everything that may be useful to the user for normal work. This is the standard set: calendar, address book, to-do list.

All the applications are pretty well made - beautiful, but without much frills. The menu contains only the essentials. The three most important, according to programmers, functions are placed in the upper right corner in the idea of ​​icons: create a new entry (clean leaflet), edit (pencil) and delete (trash can). The user also has a simple text editor and a drawing tool, the capabilities of which do not go beyond drawing lines and rectangles.

Internet opportunities rather pleased. They are implemented using the NetFront Browser and a quite advanced e-mail program implemented on the Outlook principle - even the icons are similar.

There is also a calculator, a sound recording program, a clock with a stopwatch, but for some reason without an alarm clock, world time.

A media player is also present and allows you to play both music and video files. Moreover, which is nice, he looks for these files from memory himself.

So, he had no problems with Mp3, but he digests the video with big brakes. Not only did it take him almost a minute (!) to open a tiny video, but when playing, he eats up almost half of the information, skipping frames. There are also two office applications in the set: HancomWord and HancomSheet.

At the same time, if the latter is made in the best traditions of Microsoft Excel, whose files, by the way, it easily opens, then Word is striking in its wretchedness and does not differ much from the text editor discussed above. The only thing that justifies this program is the ability to work with Microsoft Word files. I can’t help but note the extraordinary thoughtfulness of both applications: it took me several tens of seconds to open a regular Excel table with a price list without formulas, and Word simply dies on large documents, so much so that I have to reboot the entire computer ...

A few words need to be said about the interface in general. It is very convenient and should not cause any complaints from the user. Everything is in its place, quite original and at the same time leaves the feeling that you have met it somewhere. (only gripe - fonts :-)) At the top of the screen there are tabs for various folders with applications sorted by theme, at the bottom there is a control menu, similar to Windows. On the right side, the text displays the clock, input language, and in the form of icons: battery status, sound volume and the presence of memory cards in expansion slots, icons of running applications appear in the middle, and in the left corner there is a “start” button, or rather its analogue with the logo developers of the Qtopia graphical interface (something similar to a hammer and sickle), which, when clicked, opens the main menu of the PDA.

One of the top tabs takes the user to the PDA settings panel, which, by the way, is also quite standard.

It has everything from controlling the brightness of the backlight to setting up a connection to a desktop PC. If any programs add their settings to the system settings, then the corresponding icons go to this place. In my version, there was an opportunity to choose the localization language. The choice was small: between Russian and English. I was pleasantly surprised by the ability to regularly change the system interface, although, in my opinion, the standard one looks better than others, it can, for example, be made more like Windows ...

The application manager is also implemented as a tab in the top menu, and is more like Windows Explorer again. Navigation is implemented using folders and icons. If no memory cards are installed, then only Sharp's internal memory is available to the user - the PDA icon; if memory cards are installed, then the corresponding color icons appear next to the PDA image. Interestingly, the operating system automatically assigns appropriate icons to different types of files, for example, if it is a video clip, then a film roll is drawn on the icon, if it is a music file, then a note and a CD edge, so it’s hard to get confused. Unidentified files are highlighted as white rectangles with a curled corner.

I repeat, almost everything is very convenient and thought out, and if a person has ever communicated with a pocket or desktop PC, he will not experience any difficulties in communicating with Zaurus. And if this same person professionally communicated with Linux, then here he will generally feel like a fish in water, and an application that gives access to the command line will contribute to this.

Well, beyond my competence it is hardly enough to describe all the features of this tool, I just know that everything works much faster there than within the graphical interface.

My conclusions.

I would say that in spite of everything, the Zaurus C700 model is very interesting, but "raw". More precisely, I have no complaints about the design at all - it is not even made for a five, but for a six with a plus (small flaws do not count). From this point of view, Zaurus C700, in my opinion, is the ideal handheld computer that everyone is waiting for. But the software let us down. It seems that the idea is nothing and the execution is normal, but somewhere they missed something and all efforts went down the drain. So for now, this is a wonderful and magnificent computer for programmers and those very notorious bearded uncles of Linuxoids, about whom people have already begun to add fairy tales. And we have to wait. A little bit, because Sharp has already come close to realizing the ideal. Are they missing something - living water or a magic wand?

Sharp Zaurus C700. Getting closer and closer to the ideal.

Well, I finally got to the Sharp Zaurus SL-C700 PDA, a new product from a Japanese company that continues the popular line of Linux-based PDAs. As before, an interesting and ambiguous device came out of the bowels of the company.

Sharp's computer can only compete with Hi-End pocket computers and, probably, the closest model in its class is the Sony Clie NZ90. Both these PDAs have a clamshell design, similar in many respects, a built-in hardware keyboard, and a high-resolution screen. Although Sony will have a richer bundle, users will also have a 2-megapixel digital camera and Bluetooth (often to the detriment of the overall functionality of the PDA). Zaurus cannot boast of such a variety, although it is not far behind its Asian counterpart in price.

First things first.

Let's try to start the review with the most important thing - with the packaging. I really liked it, first of all, for its size: the box is slightly larger than the pocket computer itself. Only a PDA, a cable with a power adapter, a CD and liquid documentation fit in there. And it's all pretty tight.

It should be said that almost all the inscriptions on the box are made in Japanese, well, except for the name of the PDA and the manufacturer's company. Unusual. By the way, Sony, in the latest models of PDAs, has also taken the path of reducing the boxes of their PDAs, for example, in the SJ-33 and SJ-22 models, the boxes are much smaller than the packages of previous models. The Zaurus does not come with a cradle, which is strange on the one hand, since the computer clearly belongs to the "higher league", on the other hand, it is logical, since there has always been a problem for such a folding design with cradles: what was given with the Psion Revo keyboard PDA it was, in my opinion, too cumbersome (for example, I don’t have that much space next to the computer), and the solution presented with the Sony NZ-90, of course, strikes with the depth of design thought, but it is clearly not suitable for normal comfortable daily use ...

Sharp decided to play on the same thing as Sony - to make a pocket computer folding and "stuffing" it with a hardware keyboard.

Only, unlike Sony Sharp, it unfolds and rotates along the wide end and, depending on the position of the screen, changes the orientation and the picture on the monitor.

Reorientation occurs automatically - the user does not need to climb anywhere.

However, the flip function is also available from the soft menu, so you can flip the screen at any time you want.

What I liked about Sharp was the feel of the unit. All the details are surprisingly tightly fitted to each other, everything is in its place. If Sony, in my opinion, looked rather flimsy and bulky (of course, the NZ-90 model is available), then Sharp, with large sizes, seems more compact and, for some reason, more reliable.

It is nice to take it in your hands, and when you turn the screen, there is no feeling that it is about to fall off: the hinges are quite tight and the screen is fixed in extreme positions with perceptible clicks. So that an inexperienced user does not inadvertently break the mechanism, there is even a small instruction with pictures on the side of the screen.

Sharp SL-C700 looks more like a tiny laptop - you expect to see a familiar Windows interface on the screen (advanced Linux users and fans will forgive me).

In their "adult" places there are both expansion slots and connectors for connecting peripherals and cables.

Perhaps, for complete resemblance to a laptop, it lacks only a small track pad or a small mouse, but this is already from the realm of fantasy :-). The body of the SL-C700 is made of lacquered silver plastic, very smooth and pleasant to the touch, though it tends to slip out of hands at every opportunity, and the PDA weighs a lot - 225 grams. Apparently, the decision not to make the case metal was determined, first of all, by the desire not to make the computer heavier.

The keyboard is good, but not as good as it could be. I have several complaints about this. It is made in the form of one large plastic sticker with convex buttons and logical areas marked with color, which will undoubtedly make life easier for the user.The buttons even have special protrusions for the blind typing method, and I, with small, in fact, fingers, could not fit into the size of the keyboard, so the calculation, most likely, was made specifically for elegant Japanese hands. The buttons are pressed very softly, which is not typical for such keyboards, but since they have practically no vertical travel, this keyboard cannot pretend to be anything serious. More sense even from the new Sony keyboard, presented in the NZ-90 and TG-50 models. There, however, the creators were ruined by something else - a small size. But the Sharp keyboard, in principle, can be Russified. At a minimum, you can re-stick the entire sticker with a different layout. In a PDA from Sony, this, in my opinion, cannot be done in principle ...

There are few hardware buttons other than the keyboard: the scroll wheel and the double button "OK" and "Cancel" - confirmation and cancellation of the action, located directly above the "wheel".

These buttons are needed, first of all, in order to somehow communicate with the PDA in its "keyboardless" form, when the screen is unfolded and spread out so that it covers the keyboard. That's when this whole control group is right under the user's thumb, although you can contrive and use these buttons on the ajar keyboard. Also, the most important button, “Power”, is adjacent to the block of control keys.

Sharp is equipped with two expansion slots: CompactFlash and SD, which is moderately fashionable and quite functional. From the wireless connection, only the infrared port will please users, although, with so many slots, wireless communication can be implemented using expansion cards.

At the bottom or side of the screen (depending on which side you look at) there is also a small panel with touch buttons that bring up the main applications or return the user to the application manager. Moreover, the icons are slightly rotated and are read both in the vertical position of the screen and in the horizontal one. The only inconvenient thing is that these buttons are not highlighted in any way and in low light they simply get lost against the background of a bright screen.

The trouble with such a screen is that with such a resolution, a magnifying glass should be included in the standard package of the PDA. Such a resolution looks good and harmonious only on screens with a larger physical size. Sharp Zaurus especially suffers from fonts that are so small that you have to constantly squint and bring your eyes closer to the screen itself.

At the same time, if, for example, it is possible to read something at home or in the office, then in a car or other transport, when everything is already jumping, you can not even try to make out something on the screen - it will not work. Of course, the creators of this PDA also thought about the function of hardware image scaling, only it works as it wants - it enlarges everything except fonts, and this is despite the fact that many programs ignore it altogether. Working in a mode where the height of the characters barely exceeds a millimeter is not only difficult, but is a form of mockery. In principle, you can download enlarged English and Japanese fonts from the Internet, but with Russian ones, I'm afraid until this "rolls", which is a pity, it is the resolution that can become a serious obstacle to buying this PDA.

Sharp's battery is removable. This is a 950mAh Li-ion battery. This size is more or less standard for most PDAs and should provide an acceptable runtime. I didn’t notice the backup battery, but when pulling out the main user settings, they are saved, so we can assume that it is there, only hidden from the user’s eyes somewhere inside. In principle, of course, it's nice that Sharp took care of its users by making the battery removable, because lithium-ion batteries, regardless of the mode of use, do not live more than 2-3 years. Apparently, it is believed that a pocket computer of this level is purchased for a longer period. The battery, however, behaves strangely. So, for example, an LED can show only one stage - charging, but whether the battery is fully charged, each time you have to determine empirically. If the adapter is plugged into a socket, the light will glow orange, regardless of the battery status. At the same time, if the charge is very small, then the computer, after several timid warnings, simply turns off and no longer shows signs of life. Only the power adapter can revive it, and even then, in this case, the system is completely rebooted. The system charge indicator is also imperfect and is a picture of the battery (in full screen) with a schematic indication of the charge level.

And that's it - and no numbers. Only laconic type signatures: Battery condition is good. Surprisingly stupid implementation.

Software

This is the part that causes the most complaints about this pocket computer. On the one hand, Linux is good and, most importantly, quite justified from the point of view of Sharp. This operating system is freely distributed and the company's desires: a) to stand out from the crowd and b) not to pay money for a license are absolutely understandable. On the other hand, in terms of the general level of implementation, pocket Linux somehow falls short of its competitors - Palm and Pocket PC. It seems that everything is fine, but some minor flaws spoil the whole picture. One of these shortcomings, as I said above, is the lack of a magnifying glass in the PDA package, since without it nothing can be read due to tiny fonts. , in principle, made by the operating system and serious hardware characteristics looks very strange. It's nice that now the operating system is Russified, and completely, which makes Sharp a rather attractive model for the Russian market.

The pocket computer takes an unnaturally long time to boot - about 2 minutes, and this happens with every reboot, regardless of whether it is "hard" or "soft". The screen glows with a milky white light, the Zaurus logo and inscriptions appear on it, apparently intended to brighten up the expectation, or at least tell what the CCP is thinking at the moment. Alas, they are all exclusively in Japanese, so at the time of loading, all you can do to entertain yourself is admiring the extraordinary brightness and fantastic clarity of the display.

As expected, Zaurus C700 is equipped with almost everything that may be useful to the user for normal work. This is the standard set: calendar, address book, to-do list.

All the applications are pretty well made - beautiful, but without much frills. The menu contains only the essentials. The three most important, according to programmers, functions are placed in the upper right corner in the idea of ​​icons: create a new entry (clean leaflet), edit (pencil) and delete (trash can). The user also has a simple text editor and a drawing tool, the capabilities of which do not go beyond drawing lines and rectangles.

Internet opportunities rather pleased. They are implemented using the NetFront Browser and a quite advanced e-mail program implemented on the Outlook principle - even the icons are similar.

There is also a calculator, a sound recording program, a clock with a stopwatch, but for some reason without an alarm clock, world time.

A media player is also present and allows you to play both music and video files. Moreover, which is nice, he looks for these files from memory himself.

So, he had no problems with Mp3, but he digests the video with big brakes. Not only did it take him almost a minute (!) to open a tiny video, but when playing, he eats up almost half of the information, skipping frames. There are also two office applications in the set: HancomWord and HancomSheet.

At the same time, if the latter is made in the best traditions of Microsoft Excel, whose files, by the way, it easily opens, then Word is striking in its wretchedness and does not differ much from the text editor discussed above. The only thing that justifies this program is the ability to work with Microsoft Word files. I can’t help but note the extraordinary thoughtfulness of both applications: it took me several tens of seconds to open a regular Excel table with a price list without formulas, and Word simply dies on large documents, so much so that I have to reboot the entire computer ...

A few words need to be said about the interface in general. It is very convenient and should not cause any complaints from the user. Everything is in its place, quite original and at the same time leaves the feeling that you have met it somewhere. (only gripe - fonts :-)) At the top of the screen there are tabs for various folders with applications sorted by theme, at the bottom there is a control menu, similar to Windows. On the right side, the text displays the clock, input language, and in the form of icons: battery status, sound volume and the presence of memory cards in expansion slots, icons of running applications appear in the middle, and in the left corner there is a “start” button, or rather its analogue with the logo developers of the Qtopia graphical interface (something similar to a hammer and sickle), which, when clicked, opens the main menu of the PDA.

One of the top tabs takes the user to the PDA settings panel, which, by the way, is also quite standard.

It has everything from controlling the brightness of the backlight to setting up a connection to a desktop PC. If any programs add their settings to the system settings, then the corresponding icons go to this place. In my version, there was an opportunity to choose the localization language. The choice was small: between Russian and English. I was pleasantly surprised by the ability to regularly change the system interface, although, in my opinion, the standard one looks better than others, it can, for example, be made more like Windows ...

The application manager is also implemented as a tab in the top menu, and is more like Windows Explorer again. Navigation is implemented using folders and icons. If no memory cards are installed, then only Sharp's internal memory is available to the user - the PDA icon; if memory cards are installed, then the corresponding color icons appear next to the PDA image. Interestingly, the operating system automatically assigns appropriate icons to different types of files, for example, if it is a video clip, then a film roll is drawn on the icon, if it is a music file, then a note and a CD edge, so it’s hard to get confused. Unidentified files are highlighted as white rectangles with a curled corner.

I repeat, almost everything is very convenient and thought out, and if a person has ever communicated with a pocket or desktop PC, he will not experience any difficulties in communicating with Zaurus. And if this same person professionally communicated with Linux, then here he will generally feel like a fish in water, and an application that gives access to the command line will contribute to this.

Well, beyond my competence it is hardly enough to describe all the features of this tool, I just know that everything works much faster there than within the graphical interface.

My conclusions.

I would say that in spite of everything, the Zaurus C700 model is very interesting, but "raw". More precisely, I have no complaints about the design at all - it is not even made for a five, but for a six with a plus (small flaws do not count). From this point of view, Zaurus C700, in my opinion, is the ideal handheld computer that everyone is waiting for. But the software let us down. It seems that the idea is nothing and the execution is normal, but somewhere they missed something and all efforts went down the drain. So for now, this is a wonderful and magnificent computer for programmers and those very notorious bearded uncles of Linuxoids, about whom people have already begun to add fairy tales. And we have to wait. A little bit, because Sharp has already come close to realizing the ideal. Are they missing something - living water or a magic wand?

Sharp Zaurus C700. Getting closer and closer to the ideal.

Well, I finally got to the Sharp Zaurus SL-C700 PDA, a new product from a Japanese company that continues the popular line of Linux-based PDAs. As before, an interesting and ambiguous device came out of the bowels of the company.

Sharp's computer can only compete with Hi-End pocket computers and, probably, the closest model in its class is the Sony Clie NZ90. Both these PDAs have a clamshell design, similar in many respects, a built-in hardware keyboard, and a high-resolution screen. Although Sony will have a richer bundle, users will also have a 2-megapixel digital camera and Bluetooth (often to the detriment of the overall functionality of the PDA). Zaurus cannot boast of such a variety, although it is not far behind its Asian counterpart in price.

First things first.

Let's try to start the review with the most important thing - with the packaging. I really liked it, first of all, for its size: the box is slightly larger than the pocket computer itself. Only a PDA, a cable with a power adapter, a CD and liquid documentation fit in there. And it's all pretty tight.

It should be said that almost all the inscriptions on the box are made in Japanese, well, except for the name of the PDA and the manufacturer's company. Unusual. By the way, Sony, in the latest models of PDAs, has also taken the path of reducing the boxes of their PDAs, for example, in the SJ-33 and SJ-22 models, the boxes are much smaller than the packages of previous models. The Zaurus does not come with a cradle, which is strange on the one hand, since the computer clearly belongs to the "higher league", on the other hand, it is logical, since there has always been a problem for such a folding design with cradles: what was given with the Psion Revo keyboard PDA it was, in my opinion, too cumbersome (for example, I don’t have that much space next to the computer), and the solution presented with the Sony NZ-90, of course, strikes with the depth of design thought, but it is clearly not suitable for normal comfortable daily use ...

Sharp decided to play on the same thing as Sony - to make a pocket computer folding and "stuffing" it with a hardware keyboard.

Only, unlike Sony Sharp, it unfolds and rotates along the wide end and, depending on the position of the screen, changes the orientation and the picture on the monitor.

Reorientation occurs automatically - the user does not need to climb anywhere.

However, the flip function is also available from the soft menu, so you can flip the screen at any time you want.

What I liked about Sharp was the feel of the unit. All the details are surprisingly tightly fitted to each other, everything is in its place. If Sony, in my opinion, looked rather flimsy and bulky (of course, the NZ-90 model is available), then Sharp, with large sizes, seems more compact and, for some reason, more reliable.

It is nice to take it in your hands, and when you turn the screen, there is no feeling that it is about to fall off: the hinges are quite tight and the screen is fixed in extreme positions with perceptible clicks. So that an inexperienced user does not inadvertently break the mechanism, there is even a small instruction with pictures on the side of the screen.

Sharp SL-C700 looks more like a tiny laptop - you expect to see a familiar Windows interface on the screen (advanced Linux users and fans will forgive me).

In their "adult" places there are both expansion slots and connectors for connecting peripherals and cables.

Perhaps, for complete resemblance to a laptop, it lacks only a small track pad or a small mouse, but this is already from the realm of fantasy :-). The body of the SL-C700 is made of lacquered silver plastic, very smooth and pleasant to the touch, though it tends to slip out of hands at every opportunity, and the PDA weighs a lot - 225 grams. Apparently, the decision not to make the case metal was determined, first of all, by the desire not to make the computer heavier.

The keyboard is good, but not as good as it could be. I have several complaints about this. It is made in the form of one large plastic sticker with convex buttons and logical areas marked with color, which will undoubtedly make life easier for the user.The buttons even have special protrusions for the blind typing method, and I, with small, in fact, fingers, could not fit into the size of the keyboard, so the calculation, most likely, was made specifically for elegant Japanese hands. The buttons are pressed very softly, which is not typical for such keyboards, but since they have practically no vertical travel, this keyboard cannot pretend to be anything serious. More sense even from the new Sony keyboard, presented in the NZ-90 and TG-50 models. There, however, the creators were ruined by something else - a small size. But the Sharp keyboard, in principle, can be Russified. At a minimum, you can re-stick the entire sticker with a different layout. In a PDA from Sony, this, in my opinion, cannot be done in principle ...

There are few hardware buttons other than the keyboard: the scroll wheel and the double button "OK" and "Cancel" - confirmation and cancellation of the action, located directly above the "wheel".

These buttons are needed, first of all, in order to somehow communicate with the PDA in its "keyboardless" form, when the screen is unfolded and spread out so that it covers the keyboard. That's when this whole control group is right under the user's thumb, although you can contrive and use these buttons on the ajar keyboard. Also, the most important button, “Power”, is adjacent to the block of control keys.

Sharp is equipped with two expansion slots: CompactFlash and SD, which is moderately fashionable and quite functional. From the wireless connection, only the infrared port will please users, although, with so many slots, wireless communication can be implemented using expansion cards.

There are also two LEDs on the case that notify you of the arrival of new e-mail messages and the process of charging the battery.

Special mention deserves a screen with a decent resolution of 640 by 480 pixels, with a diagonal of 3.7 inches. The screen is wonderful, bright and clear, ensuring readability from any viewing angle. In it, Sharp first used Continuous Grain Silicon (CG-Silicon) technology, when an electronics substrate is mounted in the glass itself. This provides excellent brightness, but also has some disadvantages. The fact is that this screen, in fact, is a regular active matrix, as in most laptops, that is, it is not transflective and cannot reflect sunlight and thus ensure readability in natural light conditions. As a result, for example, on the street, you can hardly see anything in this PDA. The maximum brightness of the display hurts the eyes, and you can work normally only when the brightness value is set somewhere in the middle of the scale. This mode of operation also significantly reduces power consumption.

At the bottom or side of the screen (depending on which side you look at) there is also a small panel with touch buttons that bring up the main applications or return the user to the application manager. Moreover, the icons are slightly rotated and are read both in the vertical position of the screen and in the horizontal one. The only inconvenient thing is that these buttons are not highlighted in any way and in low light they simply get lost against the background of a bright screen.

The trouble with such a screen is that with such a resolution, a magnifying glass should be included in the standard package of the PDA. Such a resolution looks good and harmonious only on screens with a larger physical size. Sharp Zaurus especially suffers from fonts that are so small that you have to constantly squint and bring your eyes closer to the screen itself.

At the same time, if, for example, it is possible to read something at home or in the office, then in a car or other transport, when everything is already jumping, you can not even try to make out something on the screen - it will not work. Of course, the creators of this PDA also thought about the function of hardware image scaling, only it works as it wants - it enlarges everything except fonts, and this is despite the fact that many programs ignore it altogether. Working in a mode where the height of the characters barely exceeds a millimeter is not only difficult, but is a form of mockery. In principle, you can download enlarged English and Japanese fonts from the Internet, but with Russian ones, I'm afraid until this "rolls", which is a pity, it is the resolution that can become a serious obstacle to buying this PDA.

Sharp's battery is removable. This is a 950mAh Li-ion battery. This size is more or less standard for most PDAs and should provide an acceptable runtime. I didn’t notice the backup battery, but when pulling out the main user settings, they are saved, so we can assume that it is there, only hidden from the user’s eyes somewhere inside. In principle, of course, it's nice that Sharp took care of its users by making the battery removable, because lithium-ion batteries, regardless of the mode of use, do not live more than 2-3 years. Apparently, it is believed that a pocket computer of this level is purchased for a longer period. The battery, however, behaves strangely. So, for example, an LED can show only one stage - charging, but whether the battery is fully charged, each time you have to determine empirically. If the adapter is plugged into a socket, the light will glow orange, regardless of the battery status. At the same time, if the charge is very small, then the computer, after several timid warnings, simply turns off and no longer shows signs of life. Only the power adapter can revive it, and even then, in this case, the system is completely rebooted. The system charge indicator is also imperfect and is a picture of the battery (in full screen) with a schematic indication of the charge level.

And that's it - and no numbers. Only laconic type signatures: Battery condition is good. Surprisingly stupid implementation.

Software

This is the part that causes the most complaints about this pocket computer. On the one hand, Linux is good and, most importantly, quite justified from the point of view of Sharp. This operating system is freely distributed and the company's desires: a) to stand out from the crowd and b) not to pay money for a license are absolutely understandable. On the other hand, in terms of the general level of implementation, pocket Linux somehow falls short of its competitors - Palm and Pocket PC. It seems that everything is fine, but some minor flaws spoil the whole picture. One of these shortcomings, as I said above, is the lack of a magnifying glass in the PDA package, since without it nothing can be read due to tiny fonts. , in principle, made by the operating system and serious hardware characteristics looks very strange. It's nice that now the operating system is Russified, and completely, which makes Sharp a rather attractive model for the Russian market.

The pocket computer takes an unnaturally long time to boot - about 2 minutes, and this happens with every reboot, regardless of whether it is "hard" or "soft". The screen glows with a milky white light, the Zaurus logo and inscriptions appear on it, apparently intended to brighten up the expectation, or at least tell what the CCP is thinking at the moment. Alas, they are all exclusively in Japanese, so at the time of loading, all you can do to entertain yourself is admiring the extraordinary brightness and fantastic clarity of the display.

As expected, Zaurus C700 is equipped with almost everything that may be useful to the user for normal work. This is the standard set: calendar, address book, to-do list.

All the applications are pretty well made - beautiful, but without much frills. The menu contains only the essentials. The three most important, according to programmers, functions are placed in the upper right corner in the idea of ​​icons: create a new entry (clean leaflet), edit (pencil) and delete (trash can). The user also has a simple text editor and a drawing tool, the capabilities of which do not go beyond drawing lines and rectangles.

Internet opportunities rather pleased. They are implemented using the NetFront Browser and a quite advanced e-mail program implemented on the Outlook principle - even the icons are similar.

There is also a calculator, a sound recording program, a clock with a stopwatch, but for some reason without an alarm clock, world time.

A media player is also present and allows you to play both music and video files. Moreover, which is nice, he looks for these files from memory himself.

So, he had no problems with Mp3, but he digests the video with big brakes. Not only did it take him almost a minute (!) to open a tiny video, but when playing, he eats up almost half of the information, skipping frames. There are also two office applications in the set: HancomWord and HancomSheet.

At the same time, if the latter is made in the best traditions of Microsoft Excel, whose files, by the way, it easily opens, then Word is striking in its wretchedness and does not differ much from the text editor discussed above. The only thing that justifies this program is the ability to work with Microsoft Word files. I can’t help but note the extraordinary thoughtfulness of both applications: it took me several tens of seconds to open a regular Excel table with a price list without formulas, and Word simply dies on large documents, so much so that I have to reboot the entire computer ...

A few words need to be said about the interface in general. It is very convenient and should not cause any complaints from the user. Everything is in its place, quite original and at the same time leaves the feeling that you have met it somewhere. (only gripe - fonts :-)) At the top of the screen there are tabs for various folders with applications sorted by theme, at the bottom there is a control menu, similar to Windows. On the right side, the text displays the clock, input language, and in the form of icons: battery status, sound volume and the presence of memory cards in expansion slots, icons of running applications appear in the middle, and in the left corner there is a “start” button, or rather its analogue with the logo developers of the Qtopia graphical interface (something similar to a hammer and sickle), which, when clicked, opens the main menu of the PDA.

One of the top tabs takes the user to the PDA settings panel, which, by the way, is also quite standard.

It has everything from controlling the brightness of the backlight to setting up a connection to a desktop PC. If any programs add their settings to the system settings, then the corresponding icons go to this place. In my version, there was an opportunity to choose the localization language. The choice was small: between Russian and English. I was pleasantly surprised by the ability to regularly change the system interface, although, in my opinion, the standard one looks better than others, it can, for example, be made more like Windows ...

The application manager is also implemented as a tab in the top menu, and is more like Windows Explorer again. Navigation is implemented using folders and icons. If no memory cards are installed, then only Sharp's internal memory is available to the user - the PDA icon; if memory cards are installed, then the corresponding color icons appear next to the PDA image. Interestingly, the operating system automatically assigns appropriate icons to different types of files, for example, if it is a video clip, then a film roll is drawn on the icon, if it is a music file, then a note and a CD edge, so it’s hard to get confused. Unidentified files are highlighted as white rectangles with a curled corner.

I repeat, almost everything is very convenient and thought out, and if a person has ever communicated with a pocket or desktop PC, he will not experience any difficulties in communicating with Zaurus. And if this same person professionally communicated with Linux, then here he will generally feel like a fish in water, and an application that gives access to the command line will contribute to this.

Well, beyond my competence it is hardly enough to describe all the features of this tool, I just know that everything works much faster there than within the graphical interface.

My conclusions.

I would say that in spite of everything, the Zaurus C700 model is very interesting, but "raw". More precisely, I have no complaints about the design at all - it is not even made for a five, but for a six with a plus (small flaws do not count). From this point of view, Zaurus C700, in my opinion, is the ideal handheld computer that everyone is waiting for. But the software let us down. It seems that the idea is nothing and the execution is normal, but somewhere they missed something and all efforts went down the drain. So for now, this is a wonderful and magnificent computer for programmers and those very notorious bearded uncles of Linuxoids, about whom people have already begun to add fairy tales. And we have to wait. A little bit, because Sharp has already come close to realizing the ideal. Are they missing something - living water or a magic wand?

Sharp Zaurus C700. Getting closer and closer to the ideal.

Well, I finally got to the Sharp Zaurus SL-C700 PDA, a new product from a Japanese company that continues the popular line of Linux-based PDAs. As before, an interesting and ambiguous device came out of the bowels of the company.

Sharp's computer can only compete with Hi-End pocket computers and, probably, the closest model in its class is the Sony Clie NZ90. Both these PDAs have a clamshell design, similar in many respects, a built-in hardware keyboard, and a high-resolution screen. Although Sony will have a richer bundle, users will also have a 2-megapixel digital camera and Bluetooth (often to the detriment of the overall functionality of the PDA). Zaurus cannot boast of such a variety, although it is not far behind its Asian counterpart in price.

First things first.

Let's try to start the review with the most important thing - with the packaging. I really liked it, first of all, for its size: the box is slightly larger than the pocket computer itself. Only a PDA, a cable with a power adapter, a CD and liquid documentation fit in there. And it's all pretty tight.

It should be said that almost all the inscriptions on the box are made in Japanese, well, except for the name of the PDA and the manufacturer's company. Unusual. By the way, Sony, in the latest models of PDAs, has also taken the path of reducing the boxes of their PDAs, for example, in the SJ-33 and SJ-22 models, the boxes are much smaller than the packages of previous models. The Zaurus does not come with a cradle, which is strange on the one hand, since the computer clearly belongs to the "higher league", on the other hand, it is logical, since there has always been a problem for such a folding design with cradles: what was given with the Psion Revo keyboard PDA it was, in my opinion, too cumbersome (for example, I don’t have that much space next to the computer), and the solution presented with the Sony NZ-90, of course, strikes with the depth of design thought, but it is clearly not suitable for normal comfortable daily use ...

Sharp decided to play on the same thing as Sony - to make a pocket computer folding and "stuffing" it with a hardware keyboard.

Only, unlike Sony Sharp, it unfolds and rotates along the wide end and, depending on the position of the screen, changes the orientation and the picture on the monitor.

Reorientation occurs automatically - the user does not need to climb anywhere.

However, the flip function is also available from the soft menu, so you can flip the screen at any time you want.

What I liked about Sharp was the feel of the unit. All the details are surprisingly tightly fitted to each other, everything is in its place. If Sony, in my opinion, looked rather flimsy and bulky (of course, the NZ-90 model is available), then Sharp, with large sizes, seems more compact and, for some reason, more reliable.

It is nice to take it in your hands, and when you turn the screen, there is no feeling that it is about to fall off: the hinges are quite tight and the screen is fixed in extreme positions with perceptible clicks. So that an inexperienced user does not inadvertently break the mechanism, there is even a small instruction with pictures on the side of the screen.

Sharp SL-C700 looks more like a tiny laptop - you expect to see a familiar Windows interface on the screen (advanced Linux users and fans will forgive me).

In their "adult" places there are both expansion slots and connectors for connecting peripherals and cables.

Perhaps, for complete resemblance to a laptop, it lacks only a small track pad or a small mouse, but this is already from the realm of fantasy :-). The body of the SL-C700 is made of lacquered silver plastic, very smooth and pleasant to the touch, though it tends to slip out of your hands at every opportunity, and the PDA weighs a lot - 225 grams. Apparently, the decision not to make the case metal was determined, first of all, by the desire not to make the computer heavier.

The keyboard is good, but not as good as it could be. I have several complaints about this. It is made in the form of one large plastic sticker with convex buttons and logical areas marked with color, which will undoubtedly make life easier for the user. The buttons even have special protrusions for the blind typing method, and I, with small, in fact, fingers, could not fit into the size of the keyboard, so the calculation, most likely, was made specifically for elegant Japanese hands. The buttons are pressed very softly, which is not typical for such keyboards, but since they have practically no vertical travel, this keyboard cannot pretend to be anything serious. More sense even from the new Sony keyboard, presented in the NZ-90 and TG-50 models. There, however, the creators were ruined by something else - a small size. But the Sharp keyboard, in principle, can be Russified. At a minimum, you can re-stick the entire sticker with a different layout. In a PDA from Sony, this, in my opinion, cannot be done in principle ...

There are few hardware buttons other than the keyboard: the scroll wheel and the double button "OK" and "Cancel" - confirmation and cancellation of the action, located directly above the "wheel".

These buttons are needed, first of all, in order to somehow communicate with the PDA in its "keyboardless" form, when the screen is unfolded and spread out so that it covers the keyboard. That's when this whole control group is right under the user's thumb, although you can contrive and use these buttons on the ajar keyboard. Also, the most important button, “Power”, is adjacent to the block of control keys.

Sharp is equipped with two expansion slots: CompactFlash and SD, which is moderately fashionable and quite functional. From the wireless connection, only the infrared port will please users, although, with so many slots, wireless communication can be implemented using expansion cards.

There are also two LEDs on the case that notify you of the arrival of new e-mail messages and the process of charging the battery.

Special mention deserves a screen with a decent resolution of 640 by 480 pixels, with a diagonal of 3.7 inches. The screen is wonderful, bright and clear, ensuring readability from any viewing angle. In it, Sharp first used Continuous Grain Silicon (CG-Silicon) technology, when an electronics substrate is mounted in the glass itself. This provides excellent brightness, but also has some disadvantages. The fact is that this screen, in fact, is a regular active matrix, as in most laptops, that is, it is not transflective and cannot reflect sunlight and thus ensure readability in natural light conditions. As a result, for example, on the street, you can hardly see anything in this PDA. The maximum brightness of the display hurts the eyes, and you can work normally only when the brightness value is set somewhere in the middle of the scale. This mode of operation also significantly reduces power consumption.

At the bottom or side of the screen (depending on which side you look at) there is also a small panel with touch buttons that bring up the main applications or return the user to the application manager. Moreover, the icons are slightly rotated and are read both in the vertical position of the screen and in the horizontal one. The only inconvenient thing is that these buttons are not highlighted in any way and in low light they simply get lost against the background of a bright screen.

The trouble with such a screen is that with such a resolution, a magnifying glass should be included in the standard package of the PDA. Such a resolution looks good and harmonious only on screens with a larger physical size. Sharp Zaurus especially suffers from fonts that are so small that you have to constantly squint and bring your eyes closer to the screen itself.

At the same time, if, for example, it is possible to read something at home or in the office, then in a car or other transport, when everything is already jumping, you can not even try to make out something on the screen - it will not work. Of course, the creators of this PDA also thought about the function of hardware image scaling, only it works as it wants - it enlarges everything except fonts, and this is despite the fact that many programs ignore it altogether. Working in a mode where the height of the characters barely exceeds a millimeter is not only difficult, but is a form of mockery. In principle, you can download enlarged English and Japanese fonts from the Internet, but with Russian ones, I'm afraid until this "rolls", which is a pity, it is the resolution that can become a serious obstacle to buying this PDA.

Sharp's battery is removable. This is a 950mAh Li-ion battery. This size is more or less standard for most PDAs and should provide an acceptable runtime. I didn’t notice the backup battery, but when pulling out the main user settings, they are saved, so we can assume that it is there, only hidden from the user’s eyes somewhere inside. In principle, of course, it's nice that Sharp took care of its users by making the battery removable, because lithium-ion batteries, regardless of the mode of use, do not live more than 2-3 years. Apparently, it is believed that a pocket computer of this level is purchased for a longer period. The battery, however, behaves strangely. So, for example, an LED can show only one stage - charging, but whether the battery is fully charged, each time you have to determine empirically. If the adapter is plugged into a socket, the light will glow orange, regardless of the battery status. At the same time, if the charge is very small, then the computer, after several timid warnings, simply turns off and no longer shows signs of life. Only the power adapter can revive it, and even then, in this case, the system is completely rebooted. The system charge indicator is also imperfect and is a picture of the battery (in full screen) with a schematic indication of the charge level.

And that's it - and no numbers. Only laconic type signatures: Battery condition is good. Surprisingly stupid implementation.

Software

This is the part that causes the most complaints about this pocket computer. On the one hand, Linux is good and, most importantly, quite justified from the point of view of Sharp. This operating system is freely distributed and the company's desires: a) to stand out from the crowd and b) not to pay money for a license are absolutely understandable. On the other hand, in terms of the general level of implementation, pocket Linux somehow falls short of its competitors - Palm and Pocket PC. It seems that everything is fine, but some minor flaws spoil the whole picture. One of these shortcomings, as I said above, is the lack of a magnifying glass in the PDA package, since without it nothing can be read due to tiny fonts. , in principle, made by the operating system and serious hardware characteristics looks very strange. It's nice that now the operating system is Russified, and completely, which makes Sharp a rather attractive model for the Russian market.

The pocket computer takes an unnaturally long time to boot - about 2 minutes, and this happens with every reboot, regardless of whether it is "hard" or "soft". The screen glows with a milky white light, the Zaurus logo and inscriptions appear on it, apparently intended to brighten up the expectation, or at least tell what the CCP is thinking at the moment. Alas, they are all exclusively in Japanese, so at the time of loading, all you can do to entertain yourself is admiring the extraordinary brightness and fantastic clarity of the display.

As expected, Zaurus C700 is equipped with almost everything that may be useful to the user for normal work. This is the standard set: calendar, address book, to-do list.

All the applications are pretty well made - beautiful, but without much frills. The menu contains only the essentials. The three most important, according to programmers, functions are placed in the upper right corner in the idea of ​​icons: create a new entry (blank sheet), edit (pencil) and delete (trash can). The user also has a simple text editor and a drawing tool, the capabilities of which do not go beyond drawing lines and rectangles.

All applications are made quite well - beautifully, but without any frills. The menu contains only the essentials. The three most important, according to programmers, functions are placed in the upper right corner in the idea of ​​icons: create a new entry (clean leaflet), edit (pencil) and delete (trash can). The user also has a simple text editor and a drawing tool, the capabilities of which do not go beyond drawing lines and rectangles.

Internet opportunities rather pleased. They are implemented using the NetFront Browser and a quite advanced e-mail program implemented on the Outlook principle - even the icons are similar.

There is also a calculator, a sound recording program, a clock with a stopwatch, but for some reason without an alarm clock, world time.

A media player is also present and allows you to play both music and video files. Moreover, which is nice, he looks for these files from memory himself.

So, he had no problems with Mp3, but he digests the video with big brakes. Not only did it take him almost a minute (!) to open a tiny video, but when playing, he eats up almost half of the information, skipping frames. There are also two office applications in the set: HancomWord and HancomSheet.

At the same time, if the latter is made in the best traditions of Microsoft Excel, whose files, by the way, it easily opens, then Word is striking in its wretchedness and does not differ much from the text editor discussed above. The only thing that justifies this program is the ability to work with Microsoft Word files. I can’t help but note the extraordinary thoughtfulness of both applications: it took me several tens of seconds to open a regular Excel table with a price list without formulas, and Word simply dies on large documents, so much so that I have to reboot the entire computer ...

A few words need to be said about the interface in general. It is very convenient and should not cause any complaints from the user. Everything is in its place, quite original and at the same time leaves the feeling that you have met it somewhere. (only gripe - fonts :-)) At the top of the screen there are tabs for various folders with applications sorted by theme, at the bottom there is a control menu, similar to Windows. On the right side, the text displays the clock, input language, and in the form of icons: battery status, sound volume and the presence of memory cards in expansion slots, icons of running applications appear in the middle, and in the left corner there is a “start” button, or rather its analogue with the logo developers of the Qtopia graphical interface (something similar to a hammer and sickle), which, when clicked, opens the main menu of the PDA.

One of the top tabs takes the user to the PDA settings panel, which, by the way, is also quite standard.

It has everything from controlling the brightness of the backlight to setting up a connection to a desktop PC. If any programs add their settings to the system settings, then the corresponding icons go to this place. In my version, there was an opportunity to choose the localization language. The choice was small: between Russian and English. I was pleasantly surprised by the ability to regularly change the system interface, although, in my opinion, the standard one looks better than others, it can, for example, be made more like Windows ...

The application manager is also implemented as a tab in the top menu, and is more like Windows Explorer again. Navigation is implemented using folders and icons. If no memory cards are installed, then only Sharp's internal memory is available to the user - the PDA icon; if memory cards are installed, then the corresponding color icons appear next to the PDA image. Interestingly, the operating system automatically assigns appropriate icons to different types of files, for example, if it is a video clip, then a film roll is drawn on the icon, if it is a music file, then a note and a CD edge, so it’s hard to get confused. Unidentified files are highlighted as white rectangles with a curled corner.