A HardwareZone Special: PlayTest November 2009 (Updated with Video!)

PlayTest's Booths Part 1 - Productivity and Mobile Lifestyle


At the productivity booth, we had a selection of business-centric notebooks and netbooks, business smartphones such as the Nokia E72 and the unreleased Sony Ericsson Xperia X2 - all focussing on staying connected, working smarter, and creating presentations on-the-go. Work hard, play hard? Nah. Here, we aim to work hard and fast. Yet another very special entry in this booth was the Mobinova N910 Smartbook prototype netbook based on the NVIDIA Tegra chipset.

Vincent Chang, our Senior Tech Writer (far left), interacting with the participants while dishing out advice on what best suits their productivity workflow.

The Mobinnova N910 Smartbook is great for people who just want to complete basic online tasks on-the-go (web browsing, emailing, social networking, video streaming) with an extensive battery life. It is really small and light. Plus, it is one of the rare few NVIDIA Tegra-based netbook prototype machines that could eventually be available at your local Telco operators. It is however not compatible with a Windows OS as the hardware uses ARM's RISC based micoarchitecture and not the x86 microarchitecture in conventional systems.

The Sony Ericsson Xperia X2, featured extensively at this booth, is great for those who work on-the-go: with its ergonomically built QWERTY keyboard, emailing can be done quickly and efficiently.

Speaking of working anywhere on-the-go, being able to create a reliable hotspot for your devices and for your colleagues is of utmost importance. To facilitate that, we showed a few options such as the compact little Aztech HW550 Wireless N 3G router, the M1 MiFi 2352 pocket-able hotspot creator and even a software option using the Connectify application to instantly enable your Windows 7 equipped notebook into a WiFi hotspot.

Last but not least, what if you wanted to present to a small group without huddling around a notebook? That's where 3M's micro projector MPro120 comes into play and we had that for our audience to have a feel too.

Mobile Lifestyle

While the gadgets at the Mobile Lifestyle booth were dwarfed in size by their larger counterparts at the other booths, they held the most attention from the crowd. We had a selection featuring a plethora of cool and interesting gadgets that you shouldn't leave home without: namely, the latest mobile devices and cameras (like the dual LCD screens of the Samsung ST550 - useful for self-portraits and the Nikon S1000pj that has an in-built projector, allowing easy sharing of photos). Other notable mentions of great interest were the HTC HD2, Acer neoTouch and Liquid, as well as the world's first 3D camera not available outside of Japan!

The chirpy crowd listening to Seow Tein Hee, Tech Writer and David Chieng, HWM Editor, who both gave tips on getting a handphone that suits your mobile lifestyle.

Tein Hee sharing a moment with a participant, as they discussed about the differences between photos taken with a 12.1MP camera phone (pictured here is the Samsung Pixon12), and a 12.1MP PnS camera.

The Fujifilm FinePix REAL 3D W1 (right) is seen here, just right in front of the Nikon S1000pj, a camera that has an internal projector.

Top picture: The Fujifilm FinePix REAL 3D W1 has two lenses and two CCDs. The captured image data by the twin lens-CCD system goes through the RP (Real Photo) Processor 3D which then merges the left and right images in a single 3D image. Bottom Picture: The camera features a selection button that allows you to view the same picture in 2D or 3D. You can't really see it here, but the screen is currently showing a picture in 3D.

Terence Ang, Supervising Editor of SPH Magazines and MC for PlayTest, demystifying the technicalities behind the Fujifilm FinePix REAL 3D W1 for our bemused crowd.

The Acer Liquid, featured at our Mobile Lifestyle booth, is the first ever Android-based phone to run on a WVGA screen. As it also comes equipped with a Snapdragon processor, it makes browsing and utilizing a smartphone a whole lot faster.