Goodbye, little iPaq

Goodbye, little iPaq! I sold my iPaq h3850 today, after two years of faithful service. When I bought it in August 2002, it was the top of the line - and had the >$1k price tag to match. I could have had one of the 3950s, with that weird Bluetooth thingy that everyone was talking about; at the time, though, I was sure that Bluetooth would be just another weird fad like that peer-to-peer thingy - and besides, it was $300 more for Bluetooth. Okay, so I blew that one.

Now, there’s a new wave of technology hitting the PDA market. The top end of the range is starting to ship with VGA screens, Bluetooth and Wifi onboard, and processors that make my webserver look like a slouch. The one I was looking at was the iPaq hx4700. While PCs from Compaq/HP tend to be a bit sucky and overpriced, their PDAs (and their workstations) are the cream of the crop - and the hx4700 kept up that tradition, with a huge 4” Sony LCD and more features than anything else on the market. The only problem was that it’s a huge, heavy brick - nearly 200 grams worth of PDA goodness, when my h3850 was about 150 grams. That, and it was listing for north of $1100 (even on Expansys, which normally has the sharpest prices in the country on PDAs and Tablet PCs) But then along came Dell, throwing a sabot into HP’s profit machine with the introduction of the Axim x50v. It has much the same feature list as the hx4700 - a 624Mhz processor, Wifi and Bluetooth, and a VGA screen (although not quite as large and colourful as the iPaq’s). The only difference - it’s 20 grams lighter and $350 cheaper. Sold. So my 3850 has gone to a good home, and I’m PDA-less for seven to ten working days until my Axim arrives. When it does, there will be a review.