Another Swing at the PPC Industry
16-bit, large bright screen, awesome looks, SD/MMC, PPC benefits, multimedia, included case/extra stylus
Contrast a bit off, Cleartype is useless, no SDIO, PIE has downgraded
The Bottom Line:
Still holding true to it's name, Compaq keeps the iPAQ professional and smooth looking; it attracts users of all types.
The predecessor to the 36xx series iPAQ's, Compaq makes a new, bold enter to the PocketPC 2002 world. They introduce a much needed 16-bit color screen, a built in SD slot, and a newly designed machine that just looks stunning. It is right on par with features compared to other devices, however boosts a .3 larger screen than any other PPC currently, and the brightest screen to date. The case that comes with the iPAQ is also adequate, and I was very surprised at the fact that Compaq included a full body case.
What can I say about this device? Wow. I've carefully considered every other device, and the iPAQ was a clear winner for me. It easily had the best looks out of all the PPC devices. I found that it had a much more appealing look than say the E-200. It has a .3 inch bigger screen. I have grown very accustomed to the bigger screen. Looking at a Jornada or E-200, the screen looks a lot smaller. It spoils you fast!
Here are some Pro's that I liked about the iPAQ/PPC2k2...
Looks - The looks is one of the biggest factors that made me buy the iPAQ. It looks beautiful! It looks very professional, has a solid feel to it, and has a cool metallic look to it (the plastic even feels cold! ;). I have to give Kudos to Compaq for the looks on this device.
16-bit, 3.8 inch screen - the screen is stunning! Evenly lit, it is definitely brighter than the Jornada, and bigger too. Videos and images look great, and with the bigger screen, I don't have to get so close for it to look good.
Multimedia - This is where all PPC's are ahead! Being my first PPC, MP3's, videos, and rich content was like heaven! It is truly awesome what this little machine can do! The iPAQ's speaker is the best of all, and also features true Bass and Treble settings for headphone listening. Compaq went out of the way to make sure that audio was at peak performance.
Software - It is really nice having Pocket Word, Pocket Excel, and Internet Explorer on the device. They all do their job, but just a note: they could do it better. :)
Always On Sync - ActiveSync maintains a connection, so all updates via Outlook/PPC are instant. THIS is a really nice feature over Palm's Hotsync software. It is one of those things that you realize how nice it is when you don't have it anymore.
Extra Stylus - Well, Compaq likes to cover the little stuff. It is actually amazing how 2 styli can really help out!
Included Case - I have to give Compaq a thumbs up for this. Their new "style packs" are a very nice thin case solution; however it doesn't quite match the iPAQ's bright silver...
Multi-tasking - It is really cool to have a few apps open, and still have peak performance. Switching is instant, and it gives you that good feeling about the OS.
Sleeves - I've seen lots of negatives for the sleeves. They are a huge plus for the iPAQ! I can have up to 4 expansion options on the iPAQ! (2 PC Card slots, 1 SD slot, and the expansion slot at the bottom!). No other device can compare to the flexibility and power that the sleeves have.
No BSOD! - Thanks Microsoft, for not implanting a mini "blue screen of death". :p
Here are a few cons I encountered while using the iPAQ.
Contrast - a big one all over forums. Yes, it is a bit dark. However, it is not a big deal for me. Image viewers can adjust contrast, and so can movie players. All that leaves is games, which I hardly play anyway.
Cleartype - Well, a big minus for the iPAQ. Cleartype can now be called BlurryType! :p Due to pixel organization, and lack on behalf of Compaq/Microsoft, the Cleartype is more of a fuzziness.
Internet Explorer - This applies to PocketPC 2002. Page resizing? Forget it. It will resize selectively, and even then; not very well. A big downgrade from the PPC2k operating system.
ActiveSync - kinda quirky sometimes, and sometimes it won't recognize the device. A simple reboot, or soft reset on the device/computer usually fixes the problem.
The iPAQ is a wonderful device! Simply the best PDA that I have ever owned, and certainly the most featured. It brings a new, professional design that works for both business and home users. Using a mobile version of the most popular OS, many people can be adjusted to the OS within 5-10 minutes. Great software included, and multimedia functions are just phenomenal. Also, it was a pretty good buy at $513 from CircuitCity. Minimal learning curve, great screen, and the name that sparks everyone's eyes... iPAQ!