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Rumor: PC Mall Leaks Info on New Low-End Sony Handheld

PC Mall has a page on the PEG-SL10, a low-end handheld that hasn't been announced by Sony. If this info is correct, it has many of the features typical of Sony's handhelds. Like its current low-end model the S360, the SL10 has a monochrome screen. But unlike the S360, this new model's screen is 320 by 320. It also has a Memory Stick slot and a jog dial. PC Mall is offering it for $150.

Update: PC Mall has removed their listing on the SL10.

Update 2: Sony has officially announced the SL10.

It isn't unusual for online stores to accidentally post information on not-yet-announced products. For example, earlier this year PC Mall briefly listed the Palm m515 several weeks before Palm had announced it. These slip-up are generally followed later by official announcements from the manufacturers, though not always. Amazon listed a Sony PEG-C20 for a while, though no such handheld was ever released.

Though many people are eagerly awaiting word of Sony's handhelds which will run the new Palm OS 5, the SL10 is not one of them. According to PC Mall, it runs OS 4.1 on a 33 MHz DragonBall VZ processor.

For software, it comes with all the standard Palm OS apps plus Documents To Go, PictureGear Pocket, and gMovie.

The technical details given in these accidental pre-announcements are sometimes inconsistent and frequently turn out to be wrong. At one point PC Mall says the SL10 runs OS 4.1 and at another OS 4.0. It also says it has only 8 MB of RAM. This seems unlikely as all other Sony models, even the low-end S360, have 16 MB.

PC Mall is also inconsistent about the screen resolution. The main description of the product says the SL10's screen is 320 by 320 but the Tech Specs say is 160 by 160.

If real, this model could take the place of the S360, which sells for $30 more. The S360 is a slightly updated version of the S320, which was introduced over a year ago.

Thanks to Brian for the tip. -Ed

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All levels suited

Stingray @ 7/19/2002 8:27:56 AM #
Looks like sony is trying to keep everyone happy:) NR series for Mr. C. Omputer, and this for Joe datebook;)


"May the potato be with you!"
RE: All levels suited
Stingray @ 7/19/2002 10:27:55 PM #
Dollar for dollar, i think sony handhelds provide the best value if you look at the hardware features. Dont get me wrong, im not a sony freak or anything, i use a M505, IIIxe, IIIc, and a m100. The only reason i shy away from clie's are that there is not enough software that takes advantage of its features to justify the drain on the battery life. Plus, my digital camera uses cf, not memstick.


"May the potato be with you!"

320x320?

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 8:58:30 AM #
The Product Summary tab in the ad says "320x320", the Tech. Specs. tab says "160x160".

PC Mall doesn't know what it's talking about.

Need this but with OS 5

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 9:12:14 AM #
This is almost what I want but with OS 5 and a fast ARM processor. I'm tempted to buy this now but I'll probably continue to wait.
RE: Need this but with OS 5
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 9:21:01 AM #
OS 5 won't be available on $150 PDAs for at least a year. The first OS 5 PDAs will cost $400 or more. They are going to be kick ass and Palm/Sony knows people like us will pay $400 - $450 for kick ass stuff. Later the Early Adopter Tax will wear off and they'll drop in price.
RE: Need this but with OS 5
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 9:41:51 AM #
I'd really doubt the validity of this rumor. THe current S360 still holds up VERY well to all of Palm's offerings (especially the hideously overpriced m500 and m125) and stomps anything being offered in the Visor line. It would seem that Sony would either have to trim the feature set of the S360 to introduce a "new" cheap model (smaller screen/8 megs of ram etc) but when you start to think about it, maybe it's actually quite likely that they realized they had a hidden jewel on their hands and had to take it off the market ASAP!

I've actually felt guilty at times for not jumping on a deal that seemed too good to be true. Other than not having a cradle included the S360 seems like a fabulous deal if you don't need color. I expected Sony to either drop the model soon after releasing it, or jack the price up somehow. I've seen it priced close to $150 at times. I've recommended the unit to several friends as offering the most bang for the buck in the Palm OS market.

On a semi-related note, does anyone have any idea of the future release schedule of OS4/Dragonball handhelds? Will they continue to tweak and refine those models or are we currently seeing the final few releases from Sony now?

Palm's rumored upcoming $99 unit will almost certainly be the standard 8 megs/33 mhz model running OS4. I mean, Palm are still selling the m100's with serial only sync capabilities so I would assume they'd phase those out before the OS5 models are introduced, then divide their product line between the two OS generations. The first OS4 models to disappear will almost certainly be the specialized, low-volume, high-cost units like the 66 mhz Sonys and the i705. This is an area where Handspring could have swept up nicely, continuing to release refreshened Visors...


RE: Need this but with OS 5
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 10:37:31 AM #
two things, abundance supply of components, and weak Asian currency.
RE: Need this but with OS 5
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/20/2002 1:40:39 AM #
yeah, the first ARM/OS5 Sony will be the $500 high end guy. All the other models will remain 68k/OS4.1 for a while I bet, especially if this one is correct.

Virtual graffiti or the normal silk screened area?

Umm..How about T415 replacement?

Scott R @ 7/19/2002 11:20:59 AM #
Interesting that no one yet has compared this to the T415. Remember that one? That was Sony's monochrome 320x320 PDA. It failed and was pulled because the screen contrast was horrid. I'm guessing that they've improved the contrast (or are using a different monochrome screen technology altogether). At this price (and assuming that the battery life is great), this could be a winner.

Scott

RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 2:40:58 PM #
you are right... it sound suspiciously like the T415... which is still on sale in japan too

but usually new products are announced in japan first... so maybe we'll find something out real soon

Same as T415
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:23:50 PM #
Specs are the same as the T415... it's a well known fact that few people want B/W screens these days, and with the failure of the 415 I find it odd that they'd release yet another B/W model.
RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
Palm_Otaku @ 7/19/2002 3:27:53 PM #
It wouldn't be too surprising to see Sony come out with the rumored SL10 as a monochrome 320x320 device.

Looking at www.palmevolution.com Sony seems to have roughly 9 month model lifespans, and it wouldn't be surprising to see the S360 line discontinued and the SL10 introduced.

ScottR is correct in that essentially it's also the replacement for the T415

Cheers,

Dan

RE: Same as T415
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:49:42 PM #
Is it a well-known fact? AFAIK, Sony's S320/S360 models have been selling fairly well. The failure of the T415 was because it was /expensive/. Perhaps few people want high-end B&W models, but for $150, this model might fare a little better.
RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
Altema @ 7/19/2002 4:20:57 PM #
"Sony's S320/S360 models have been selling fairly well. The failure of the T415 was because it was /expensive/.

The S series sells well because they are good devices. I don't remember the price if the t415, but I do remember the combination of a very bad screen, poor buttons, and battery life worse than some color units (7 hours according to Sony). If they were expensive, well, add that to the list.

RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 5:26:04 PM #
Lets just say this, Japanese have different taste and different demand than Americans. apparently the S-series that people in US considered really great is not even listed on sony's website anymore, and the T-4xx people in US thinks it sucks so bad is still selling in Japan.
RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
Ed @ 7/19/2002 5:37:04 PM #
Actually, the S300 and S360 were never offered in Japan at all. I think Sony has decided that a 320 by 320 screen is a necessity for the Japanese written language.

If the T415 is still on sale in Japan, it must be left over inventory. Sony discontinued it there some time ago and it isn't available from SonyStyle Japan any more.

---
News Editor

RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 9:01:20 PM #
"... it's a well known fact that few people want B/W screens these days ..."

Please do not parade your bias for fact.

The fact is that units with monochrome screens outsell units with color screens by a considerable margin. And despite all the hype about color, pixels, swivels and so on, the s320 is by far the best selling unit in the CLIE range.

RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/20/2002 2:39:37 PM #
Actually, the S300 was offered in Japan, along with the S500, the color version, which never came here.

-----------Quote-------------
Actually, the S300 and S360 were never offered in Japan at all. I think Sony has decided that a 320 by 320 screen is a necessity for the Japanese written language.

RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
Ed @ 7/20/2002 2:48:05 PM #
Sorry, I meant to say that the S320 and S360 were never offered in Japan at all.

---
News Editor
RE: Umm..How about T415 replacement?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/21/2002 8:32:47 AM #
The fact that one (type of) unit outsells another is by no means an indication of its popularity. The fact that most people would rather want to have a Mercedes than a Toyota doesn't mean that Mercedes outsells Toyota.

-----------Quote-------------
"... it's a well known fact that few people want B/W screens these days ..."

Please do not parade your bias for fact.

The fact is that units with monochrome screens outsell units with color screens by a considerable margin. And despite all the hype about color, pixels, swivels and so on, the s320 is by far the best selling unit in the CLIE range.

Not Today

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 11:46:19 AM #
Looks like PC Mall is keeping up with its commitment to "Technology Solutions for Tomorrow"!

The last of its kind?

Foo Fighter @ 7/19/2002 11:57:23 AM #
Perhaps this will be Sony's last OS4/Dragonball architectured product...before the BIG move. Hopefully the new ARM based hardware won't be far behind this little guy.

Come on SONY! Bring on the new toys! :-)

true ...

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 1:47:53 PM #
the mentioned device will use the 320x320 gs display of the t-4xx series.
it will run on AAA batteries.

BUT THATīS NOT ALL:

we will see 2 low-price clies with palmos 4.1 blowing away the m1xx series of palm.

both will be quite thick but way shorter than any palm today.
no metal casing but a light-silver squarish plastic-casing.

the other one is REALLY SWEET:
rechargable, 320x320 colorscreen comparable in brightness and color to that of the NR.
(ca. 350 euro / 300-350 us$)

believe me or not! - i had my hands on this one a couple of days ago and could compare it with my NR!

flame me if you like but remember where you heard it first!

RE: true ...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 1:57:31 PM #
ps: the color model will be called sl30
RE: true ...
TexSkater9140 @ 7/19/2002 2:06:19 PM #
How are you sure that they will blow away the m1xx series?
like what are the features that make them better then the said palms?
i am currently contimplating getting a m130, despite that everyone is upset because it "might" not have the same amount of colors it says.
if one of them is the same or better then a m130, at about the same price, i might just wait a while for that, unless it comes out after october, cuz i am yearning for color and cant wait much longer.
-alex

---------------------------------------
Computing in the palm of your hand; Now thats HANDe!
[url="http://www.handecomputing.com"]HANDe Computing [/url]
RE: true ...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:45:00 PM #
as said: the 320x320 color display kicks ass !!!
palm has NOTHING comparable!
(and itīs even shorter than the m130 but has the bigger display (not just in res.))
RE: true ...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:46:34 PM #
Hmmm the previous poster brings to mind a recent issue that I never recalled seeing resolved. Did anyone ever confirm with absolute certainty whether or not the m130 has a true 16-bit screen? It's basically proven that the Treo 90 has only a 12-bit screen, right?

What would happen if I were to load Zap 2016 (instead of just regular ol' Zap 2000) onto an m130/Treo 90? Would everything display properly? Would there be more dithering than on a true 16-bit handheld?

Personally, I think that the washed out screens of the m130 and Treo 90 (especially the Treo!) as tremendous drawbacks to these units. personally, I find them less desirable than the "primitive" models they wereintended to replace, the IIc and the Prism.

RE: true ...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/20/2002 10:14:59 PM #
If you're considering the m1130 u should strongly consider the T615. Better screen and thinner for $20 more. Worth it!!!
RE: true ...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/21/2002 1:27:15 PM #
Just to comment on the Zap!2016 question - the game will work just fine, but with a 12-bit screen you'll see more 'stepping' on smooth colour gradients. BTW, the STN screens that the colour Treo and the m130 have aren't great for black-based moving games. That's the price you pay for cheap+colour!

David @ astraware.com

Someone mentioned..

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 2:01:58 PM #
I saw a post in anther forum mentioned that the multi-function stylus he bought from SonyStyle states that it's for "NR/SL/T/SJ" if that's true there will be probably another SJ?

Shape in S series? T series?

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 2:19:18 PM #
Anybody know?
Or it's a brand new design?

RE: Shape in S series? T series?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 5:37:50 PM #
like the t-series but shorter, thicker and a silver plastic-casing.
RE: Shape in S series? T series?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 5:43:19 PM #
LoL ..

it'll be a new design I believe. probably won't be anything fantastic, anyway looks like a dirt cheap low-end $150 dollars handheld.

RE: Shape in S series? T series?
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/22/2002 11:53:22 AM #
and now? - are you still "LOL" ?

http://www.sonystyle.com/home/item.jsp?itemid=45721

Could they be anticipating the release of this...

I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:20:40 PM #
RE: Could they be anticipating the release of this...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:32:30 PM #
anticipating? what are you talking about?

That was a model in year 1999, discountinued long time ago.


RE: Could they be anticipating the release of this...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:32:36 PM #
Thats a very old palm, it came out in japan when we got the s300. Apparently the US got skipped on that one. Anyone ever use one? I always wondered how the color screen was on it...
RE: Could they be anticipating the release of this...
Palm_Otaku @ 7/19/2002 3:34:00 PM #
Heh, no the S500C (color, Japan-only) and the S300 were actually Sony's first Clie's, introduced in mid-2000.

RE: Could they be anticipating the release of this...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:34:38 PM #
Sorry, my bad.
RE: Could they be anticipating the release of this...
I.M. Anonymous @ 7/19/2002 3:48:23 PM #
The screen on the S500 was horrible, which probably is why they opted not to release it in the U.S.
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