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WiFi Enable Your Palm with a Case

Enfora has announced a case that not only provides protection, but wireless connectivity as well. The Wireless Portfolio case features a built in WiFi (802.11b) receiver for mobile internet access.

Enfora WP802b wifi caseThe WP802b is portfolio style, leather case with an integrated WiFi receiver. It connects to any Palm handheld with the Palm universal connector. It is compatible with both Palm OS 5 and 4.1 devices.

Because of the significant power requirements of WiFi, the WP802b includes a 700mAh LiPolymer rechargeable battery. Enfora says with typical use, the battery will last up to 24 hours.

The case measures 3.8 x 1.4 x 6.2 inches (95 x 35 x 155 mm). It supports data rates of 1, 2, 5.5, and 11 Mbps, though the actual rate will be limited by the speed of the universal connector. It also supports the 40-bit/128-bit WEP wireless security standards. It has a maximum range of about 150 meters outdoors and 30m in an indoor office setting.

It is expected to be available in the next three months. It will retail around $169 USD.

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Interesting

Gizmo Geek @ 4/14/2003 12:52:17 AM #
This looks like it could be something to consider. With an external battery - no worries about draining the pda battery. One concern though, will this be available for all other handhelds - ie the clie, handspring etc. It only mentions it will allow for Palm's with the universal connector.
RE: Interesting
pen_n_paper @ 4/14/2003 2:43:15 AM #
sweet. At least i have a m130 and now i'm itching for one....well what a nice idea...i got to thank to the designer

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Simple!
Fammy @ 4/14/2003 8:56:01 AM #
Such a simple and great idea! And the price seems to be very resonable. The case looks a little big. I'd be inclined to take my PDA out for non-WiFi usage.

_____
Fammy

Distinctly lame

fireproof @ 4/14/2003 9:06:41 AM #
While I'd love to have WiFi for my palm, this "case" has far too many compromises for me or my PDA.

First off, it's a zipper case. I'll admit, I just don't like them much -- it takes too long to open them, they're a hassle once they're open, and they don't offer much in the way of protection.

Secondly, the WiFi device's connection looks like a weak spot, specifically at the cord where the case folders (day after day after day).

Third, this method might work for folks without any other connection method, but for anyone that needs a keyboard while surfing : giving up the universal connector is a bad idea.

Not much of a case; device looks cobbled together; uses a connection method I need for other stuff. Argh. I'd love a decent 802.11 card (or something) for my Palm, but this just isn't it.

RE: Distinctly lame
robman @ 4/14/2003 9:50:10 AM #
I'm not a fan of the zipper case either, but then again it seems like a poor business model to try and combine one specific type of case (leather zipper) with one specific type of peripheral (802.11) for one particular type of handheld (Palm's with Universial Connectors).

I would think this company would be trying to resell their components to more established case company (like Vaja or E&B) so they can focus on what they love.
From the look of their website, it seems like this is the kind of thing they would benefit from.

Personally I'd be interested in an E&B slipper case for my Tungsten with Wi-Fi support. But not if that means I lose the ability to HotSync while still in the case (and with a real HotSync cradle!)

Best,
Robby


Palm Researcher at the University of Texas at Austin
http://www.edb.utexas.edu/petrosino/pda

RE: Distinctly lame
hudsonhawk @ 4/18/2003 1:33:24 PM #
Actually, it looks an awful lot lit that Kyocera / Quaalcomm Palm Connectivity Kit (http://www.kyocera-wireless.com/support/palm_kit/palm_kit.htm).

I've had mine for about a year and I've found that its cable has held up quite nicely. To me it looks like a really nice compromise. I'd rather be stuck using graffiti since I'll have so much extra battery life, and I would think this unit would have a much more powerful transceiver (definitely has a bigger antenna).

Just a thought. And if you're like me and you're still using a Palm III, those connectivity kits are worth picking up for 10 bucks on ebay.

Scott

RE: Distinctly lame
Salvo @ 8/30/2003 10:45:20 PM #
"Personally I'd be interested in an E&B slipper case for my Tungsten with Wi-Fi support. But not if that means I lose the ability to HotSync while still in the case (and with a real HotSync cradle!)"

But you won't have to use the Hotsync Cradle, you can just hotsync over the Network (if your PC has access to the same network.
A Slipper/WiFi will need external power adaptor anyway, so the only thing you're missing out on would be a keyboard...

Clever... but no cigar...

peitron @ 4/14/2003 10:11:33 AM #
Cute idea, but I just don't see me buying it. I really don't mind it being zippered (I use to carry my IIIX in a PalmGlove zippered case and it was fine), but the form just doesn't do it for me. First, it looks kind of clunky and large. I like to carry my TT around in my pocket and this case just looks too big for that purpose. Second, if it's "universal", than it will probably work with velcro, and that just won't cut it for me anymore. And anyway, who wants to recharge their case all the time? I'll wait for the dual Wi-Fi/SD card.

____________________________________________________________
"Why should I care about posterity? What's posterity ever done for me?" - Groucho Marx
RE: Clever... but no cigar...
pen_n_paper @ 4/15/2003 5:16:54 AM #
nah it is great. fine charge my bag no problem. I mean this is a revolutionary idea! this is the only way for my m130

:-)

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Velcro?
Marshall Flinkman @ 4/15/2003 5:48:29 PM #
The "universal" is referring to the Universal Connector on the Palm, not a way to hold it in the case.

Also, the UC is not just the standardized port--there're also the two tab holes on the back that hold any sort of sled-like attachment in place. Most likely, this would use tabs there to hold the Palm in the case, and connect to an m130, m515, TT, Garmin iQue (don't forget, they licensed the UC!) or any other UC-based Palm.

705i

hodad @ 4/14/2003 9:54:33 AM #
I purchased the 705i 14 months ago. The connection on the base of the palm is completely worn out. Iíve tried it with two cradles, two separate computes, have rebooked partially several times, and completely rebooted three times. I called the support people waited 30 minutes (after purchasing their ~$45 extended support) who offered to replace this unit with a refurbished one or repair for $40. I have been subscriber to their wireless service the entire 14 months at ~$45/mth. The new 705ís go for ~$150.

Why would these guys not just replace this obviously inept unit. Forest for the trees guys.

Iíve dumped the wireless service today.

If anyone at palm gives a hoot, my Serial Number is 60ju1bu10757. You have my contact info.


RE: 705i
Altema @ 4/14/2003 2:39:22 PM #
Either you are a harder user than I, or your connector must have been defective. I have the equivalent of 5 years of use on my UC and it still works like new. I did clean the contacts once because they 'looked' dirty... used the corner of a cardboard business card.

They must have been in the middle of a training course on "how to alienate customers" the day you called. Seems to me they would have at least tried to remedy the situation since they received double income from you (purchase + plan).

Why no sled?

riverr02 @ 4/14/2003 5:31:26 PM #
It would seem to me that a sled using a universal connector, perhaps with its own rechargeable lithium battery, would be the best solution for some people. It would allow you to coninue to use the SD card already in your Palm, and only need to attach it when you need WiFi access. Anybody out there make one of these?
RE: Why no sled?
pocketscience @ 4/14/2003 7:13:57 PM #
Yup, Intel/Xircom have one for the OS4 UC devices (m5x5 etc). But when the Tungsten|T came out they stated that they wouldn't be updating the driver software though... shame as the sled was pretty sweet (I got 2 just sitting here collecting dust now if anyone's interested...!).


Cheers,

Wassup?

RE: Why no sled?
pbratland @ 4/17/2003 10:45:10 PM #
Do you still have these two sleds available? how much? email me @pbratland@yahoo.com

Nice but ...

RhinoSteve @ 4/15/2003 4:58:11 AM #
First, if they are doing Universal Connector, I hope they also put in the hooks for the back of Palm SG Universal Connector devices. If this is just a serail cable at the bottom, they are in trouble.

how soon do you want it?

benixau @ 4/15/2003 12:16:43 PM #
how bad and soon do you need 802.11?
i want to wait for the SD card.

RE: how soon do you want it?
Lucky Bob @ 8/13/2003 2:52:59 PM #
Still waiting? :P

(Why do some people say you can kill two birds with one stone when it's hard enough killing one bird with two stones?)

Still Waiting...

Lucky Bob @ 7/1/2003 3:01:33 AM #
.....

(Why do some people say you can kill two birds with one stone when it's hard enough killing one bird with two stones?)
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