OESF | ELSI | pdaXrom | OpenZaurus | Zaurus Themes | Community Links | Ibiblio

IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

 
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> How Long Can Sharp Ignore The Umpc Market?
gr8ful
post May 16 2007, 05:59 AM
Post #1





Group: Members
Posts: 163
Joined: 13-October 05
Member No.: 8,307



We all know that Sharp is a very innovative company with a wide mix of products. Why haven't we seen Sharp come out with a UMPC type product?

As I watch all the various products come out: OQO, Samsung Q1, Sony UX, and the latest, the Fujitsu FMV-U8240 (a poor Zaurus imitation) all I can think of is .... Sharp what are you waiting for?

The Zaurus form factor, coupled with a larger screen and Intel chipset would be the front running UMPC on the market. And since Sharp would be leveraging their vast experience in handheld solutions (the Zaurus), their research and development time and cost should also be significantly less than many other manufacturers, which should allow them to produce it at a very affordable price.

Am I the only one who believes Sharp is missing a golden opportunity to become a frontrunner in a growing market?

On top of all that, the Intel chipset will allow all the Linux lovers to run full desktop distros on the platform and take full advantage of the vast array of Linux software available.

Sharp, if you are listening, get up off your fat butt and show these UMPC boys how it's done right!!!!
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
dhns
post May 16 2007, 07:21 AM
Post #2





Group: Members
Posts: 699
Joined: 26-February 04
From: near Munich, Germany
Member No.: 2,043



QUOTE(gr8ful @ May 16 2007, 02:59 PM)
...since Sharp would be leveraging their vast experience in handheld solutions (the Zaurus), their research and development time and cost should also be significantly less than many other manufacturers...

I don't believe so:

1. UMPCs are developed by Intel&MS - and they provide complete reference designs ready to be built by the PC assembly lines in China
2. I would assume that the vast Zaurus development experience (the half-life period is quite short!) is no longer available for Sharp (people might have gone, external contractors have changed their business focus etc.)

-- hns
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
HoloVector
post May 16 2007, 07:27 AM
Post #3





Group: Members
Posts: 474
Joined: 22-March 06
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Member No.: 9,420



QUOTE(gr8ful @ May 16 2007, 07:59 AM)
We all know that Sharp is a very innovative company with a wide mix of products.  Why haven't we seen Sharp come out with a UMPC type product?

As I watch all the various products come out: OQO, Samsung Q1, Sony UX, and the latest, the Fujitsu FMV-U8240 (a poor Zaurus imitation) all I can think of is .... Sharp what are you waiting for?

The Zaurus form factor, coupled with a larger screen and Intel chipset would be the front running UMPC on the market.  And since Sharp would be leveraging their vast experience in handheld solutions (the Zaurus), their research and development time and cost should also be significantly less than many other manufacturers, which should allow them to produce it at a very affordable price.

Am I the only one who believes Sharp is missing a golden opportunity to become a frontrunner in a growing market?

On top of all that, the Intel chipset will allow all the Linux lovers to run full desktop distros on the platform and take full advantage of the vast array of Linux software available.

Sharp, if you are listening, get up off your fat butt and show these UMPC boys how it's done right!!!!
*


PCs in general are not one of their core strengths (do they even sell the Mebius anymore?) and Sharp usually only pushes the forefront with their core strengths.

I think Sharp is tempted by the UMPC market but, I hear that the UMPCs are not taking the world by storm. If that changes, I am fairly certain that Sharp will "dip a toe in the water" so to speak and release one through the retooled Zaurus assembly line.

I actually believe that the UMPC is what is keeping the Zaurus production line running. Sharp will continue to produce Zaurii until the market fully accepts the UMPC category; then Sharp will retool the Zaurus production line and start spitting out UMPCs.

I also suspect that Sharp had advance warning from Microsoft of their recent patent action on Linux which is why they announced the discontinuation of the Zaurus to distance themselves from Linux. dry.gif
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
desertrat
post May 16 2007, 09:10 AM
Post #4





Group: Members
Posts: 742
Joined: 15-October 05
From: Gulag, Siberia
Member No.: 8,322



QUOTE(gr8ful @ May 16 2007, 01:59 PM)
As I watch all the various products come out: OQO, Samsung Q1, Sony UX, and the latest, the Fujitsu FMV-U8240 (a poor Zaurus imitation) all I can think of is .... Sharp what are you waiting for?
Probably waiting until there is a proven market, and waiting until the technology can provide a decent product without compromise. So far I have not been impressed with the UMPC offerings.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
tg
post May 16 2007, 10:07 AM
Post #5





Group: Members
Posts: 145
Joined: 9-March 04
Member No.: 2,230



QUOTE(desertrat @ May 16 2007, 12:10 PM)
QUOTE(gr8ful @ May 16 2007, 01:59 PM)
As I watch all the various products come out: OQO, Samsung Q1, Sony UX, and the latest, the Fujitsu FMV-U8240 (a poor Zaurus imitation) all I can think of is .... Sharp what are you waiting for?
Probably waiting until there is a proven market, and waiting until the technology can provide a decent product without compromise. So far I have not been impressed with the UMPC offerings.
*



Problem with this approach is that by the time Sharp makes this decision they will be too late to the game.
Unfortunatelly Sharp seems to be more likely to release some incredibly useful new japanese dictionary (or course running on latest on core 2 duo processor so it can search really fast) rather than listen to user feedback.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
desertrat
post May 16 2007, 10:40 AM
Post #6





Group: Members
Posts: 742
Joined: 15-October 05
From: Gulag, Siberia
Member No.: 8,322



QUOTE(tg @ May 16 2007, 06:07 PM)
Problem with this approach is that by the time Sharp makes this decision they will be too late to the game.
Sharp is a relatively small CE company so they probably couldn't afford to bring out flop after flop to see which flop succeeds smile.gif

QUOTE
Unfortunatelly Sharp seems to be more likely to release some incredibly useful new japanese dictionary (or course running on latest on core 2 duo processor so it can search really fast) rather than listen to user feedback.
Apparently that's what puts the sushi on the table for them, so you can't really argue with that.

Assuming Sharp does release a "UMPC", what is it going to look like? For starters it's going to be running some form of windoze, which means it's going to be using some X86 architecture, which means it's going to look very similar to every other UMPC. My point is what does Sharp bring to the table, if they release a UMPC, that will make it stand out from the crowd?

The Zaurus' attraction is that it is a clamshell pda with a comprehensive keyboard and it runs linux - with probably the exception of the HTC Universal, there is nothing else like it out there. So if Sharp brings out a run of the mill UMPC I fail to see why current Z owners would want to buy Sharp's offering rather than its competitors'.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
tg
post May 16 2007, 11:20 AM
Post #7





Group: Members
Posts: 145
Joined: 9-March 04
Member No.: 2,230



QUOTE(desertrat @ May 16 2007, 01:40 PM)
QUOTE(tg @ May 16 2007, 06:07 PM)
Problem with this approach is that by the time Sharp makes this decision they will be too late to the game.
Sharp is a relatively small CE company so they probably couldn't afford to bring out flop after flop to see which flop succeeds smile.gif

QUOTE
Unfortunatelly Sharp seems to be more likely to release some incredibly useful new japanese dictionary (or course running on latest on core 2 duo processor so it can search really fast) rather than listen to user feedback.
Apparently that's what puts the sushi on the table for them, so you can't really argue with that.

Assuming Sharp does release a "UMPC", what is it going to look like? For starters it's going to be running some form of windoze, which means it's going to be using some X86 architecture, which means it's going to look very similar to every other UMPC. My point is what does Sharp bring to the table, if they release a UMPC, that will make it stand out from the crowd?

The Zaurus' attraction is that it is a clamshell pda with a comprehensive keyboard and it runs linux - with probably the exception of the HTC Universal, there is nothing else like it out there. So if Sharp brings out a run of the mill UMPC I fail to see why current Z owners would want to buy Sharp's offering rather than its competitors'.
*



Sharp did have the vision at one point since they built the device for which there is still no competition out there (even years later there is nothing that can touch the Z). And they also had the vision to put Linux on it.
So I don't think we should assume Sharp umpc would have to be Windows, sliding keyboard (instead of clam) - if they did that then I would agree its another run of the mill boring attempt that does not make sense. But we all know they can do much better than that (in both hardware and software areas) if they can somehow get over their obsession with japanese dictionaries (who says they should only eat sushi anyway - western diets are not *that* bad - little fat will not kill anyone).
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
gr8ful
post May 16 2007, 12:06 PM
Post #8





Group: Members
Posts: 163
Joined: 13-October 05
Member No.: 8,307



QUOTE(desertrat @ May 16 2007, 12:10 PM)
QUOTE(gr8ful @ May 16 2007, 01:59 PM)
As I watch all the various products come out: OQO, Samsung Q1, Sony UX, and the latest, the Fujitsu FMV-U8240 (a poor Zaurus imitation) all I can think of is .... Sharp what are you waiting for?
Probably waiting until there is a proven market, and waiting until the technology can provide a decent product without compromise. So far I have not been impressed with the UMPC offerings.
*




Wait for a proven market? Sharp didn't seem to think that when they launched the Zaurus, one of the first with a keyboard and running embedded Linux no less. Or when they were the first or one of the first to include a VGA screen on a pda and first to put VGA screens on phones. First to embed a microdrive. What about their EM-One (s01sh) platform that doesn't even have voice capability but is instead a Mobile Broadband Terminal, how many of those are on the market?

Maybe the fact that the Zaurus didn't catch on with the rest of the world outside of Japan has caused them to take things slower. I want to see that daring and innovative Sharp that brought us the Zaurus not because there was an established PDA market for flip screen, VGA, embedded Linux PDAs but because they knew they could build and deliver a superior, world-class device that, as many of you have already stated, has the rest of the industry is STILL playing catch-up.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
HoloVector
post May 16 2007, 01:42 PM
Post #9





Group: Members
Posts: 474
Joined: 22-March 06
From: Winnipeg, Canada
Member No.: 9,420



Sharp has traditionally been in the lead of the organizer/PDA market going way back to the Sharp Wizard versus Casio B.O.S.S wars in the 80s. This was before John Sculley, then CEO of Apple and Newton visionary, had coined the term Personal Digital Assistant (PDA). For Sharp the Zaurus was merely the culmination of there earlier PDA work. They never really understood open source.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
kopsis
post May 16 2007, 03:30 PM
Post #10





Group: Members
Posts: 329
Joined: 1-July 04
Member No.: 3,880



QUOTE(tg @ May 16 2007, 02:20 PM)
Sharp did have the vision at one point since they built the device for which there is still no competition out there (even years later there is nothing that can touch the Z). And they also had the vision to put Linux on it.
*


The Zaurus "visionaries" have all been in the user community. Those of us who have been here since day 1 (yes, I had a pre-release SL-5000 developer model) know that Sharp's vision has had some serious astigmatism over the years smile.gif Hence their relative lack of success in Europe and the US and their marginalization as a "cool e-dictionary" in Japan.

Who remembers the original C700? Full VGA screen ... Brilliant! Clamshell design ... nice, but HP and Psion were there long before. Barely enough memory to boot the OS ... huh? It arguably took them three tries to get a clamshell Z that most would consider usable (the C760).

Now go back to the 5X00 generation and look at their vision. Sliding keyboard thingy ... cute but not as useful as it looked (could have just ditched the huge D-pad and buttons and done it Blackberry style). Other HW specs ... pretty standard compared to PocketPCs at the time.

Some would say that using Linux was visionary, but I challenge you to go back to an old stock Sharp ROM and tell me how good their Linux vision was smile.gif They figured "throw it out there quick and the Linux community will write tons of apps for it". But anyone that knows the Linux world knows their forte is "incremental improvement". And since Sharp did a shoddy job on the software and didn't Open Source anything but the kernel, half the community went of and started trying to fix the kernel and the other half went off to recreate the DE using stuff that *was* Open Source. Visionary would have been to open up the whole software stack and then work with the community to integrate all the improvements into the "official" ROMs.

The goal of consumer electronics is to sell so many that your device becomes a houshold word. Blackberry, iPod, Palm Pilot ... those were visionary because they predicted the needs/wants of a large segment of the population. Sharp accidentally stumbled into a surprisingly capable little device with the Zaurus SL line, but visionary it was not.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
tg
post May 16 2007, 04:11 PM
Post #11





Group: Members
Posts: 145
Joined: 9-March 04
Member No.: 2,230



QUOTE(kopsis @ May 16 2007, 06:30 PM)
QUOTE(tg @ May 16 2007, 02:20 PM)
Sharp did have the vision at one point since they built the device for which there is still no competition out there (even years later there is nothing that can touch the Z). And they also had the vision to put Linux on it.
*


The Zaurus "visionaries" have all been in the user community. Those of us who have been here since day 1 (yes, I had a pre-release SL-5000 developer model) know that Sharp's vision has had some serious astigmatism over the years smile.gif Hence their relative lack of success in Europe and the US and their marginalization as a "cool e-dictionary" in Japan.

Who remembers the original C700? Full VGA screen ... Brilliant! Clamshell design ... nice, but HP and Psion were there long before. Barely enough memory to boot the OS ... huh? It arguably took them three tries to get a clamshell Z that most would consider usable (the C760).

Now go back to the 5X00 generation and look at their vision. Sliding keyboard thingy ... cute but not as useful as it looked (could have just ditched the huge D-pad and buttons and done it Blackberry style). Other HW specs ... pretty standard compared to PocketPCs at the time.

Some would say that using Linux was visionary, but I challenge you to go back to an old stock Sharp ROM and tell me how good their Linux vision was smile.gif They figured "throw it out there quick and the Linux community will write tons of apps for it". But anyone that knows the Linux world knows their forte is "incremental improvement". And since Sharp did a shoddy job on the software and didn't Open Source anything but the kernel, half the community went of and started trying to fix the kernel and the other half went off to recreate the DE using stuff that *was* Open Source. Visionary would have been to open up the whole software stack and then work with the community to integrate all the improvements into the "official" ROMs.

The goal of consumer electronics is to sell so many that your device becomes a houshold word. Blackberry, iPod, Palm Pilot ... those were visionary because they predicted the needs/wants of a large segment of the population. Sharp accidentally stumbled into a surprisingly capable little device with the Zaurus SL line, but visionary it was not.
*



Sure - Sharp took 3 tries to get it right but the vision was there even with the C700 (and I would argue 5X00 devices as well). And let's not blame Sharp for having to try 3 times either - NOBODY else before or after has even been able to get this far. I agree with everything you said about software side of things (as I have also been in this community for a while and have felt the pain). But I still give Sharp a lot of credit for going with Linux on the Z (even if they completely misunderstood the open source development community they at least knew Linux is what you need to start with on these types of devices). It is hard to believe that such promising start has turned into today's sad state of affairs where we spend all this time on Zaurus forum fantasizing about some other company picking it up where Sharp pulled out.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
freizugheit
post May 16 2007, 05:32 PM
Post #12





Group: Members
Posts: 409
Joined: 7-November 03
Member No.: 811



QUOTE
It is hard to believe that such promising start has turned into today's sad state of affairs where we spend all this time on Zaurus forum fantasizing about some other company picking it up where Sharp pulled out.


With the contributions from the communities, it helps shape the next generation of embedded Linux device.

As long as developers are well worth with the embedded Linux development, porting Zaurus-like ROMs to various newer UMPCs, PDAs, or embedded devices should not be any problem.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
markpmc
post May 17 2007, 05:01 AM
Post #13





Group: Members
Posts: 62
Joined: 16-December 03
Member No.: 1,089



Sharp can do what Sharp wants to do. They may or may not be missing the boat in the UMPC arena, but the UMPC's are also very expensive.

I agree that someone will pickup where sharp left off, but I'm not holding my breath.

mark
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
kitkatneko
post May 17 2007, 11:57 AM
Post #14





Group: Members
Posts: 14
Joined: 14-May 07
Member No.: 16,455



what is this then? ME one
http://www.sharp.co.jp/em/s01sh/spec/index.html
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
speculatrix
post May 17 2007, 02:14 PM
Post #15





Group: Admin
Posts: 3,281
Joined: 29-July 04
From: Cambridge, England
Member No.: 4,149



QUOTE(gr8ful @ May 16 2007, 09:06 PM)
Wait for a proven market?  Sharp didn't seem to think that when they launched the Zaurus, one of the first with a keyboard and running embedded Linux no less.
*


I have come to believe that linux on the zaurus was not down to a "vision" by Sharp, but perhaps simply an act of necessity... the Symbian market was wrapped up by Psion, the WinCE market was a set of clones and generally ugly ones, they needed a protocol stack that would work with the variety of different mobile communications devices in use in Japan, and needed something that could do international (well, Japanese) character sets.

I would guess that their earlier PDA/dictionary devices were based on their programmable pocket calculator units (I had one a long while ago, even got hold of the special programmers manual and wrote assembler for it!), and they simply didn't have sufficiently advanced OS to do what they wanted the Z to do.

Sharp may have decided not to "waste" money on a WinCE license, and I can't remember when Symbian was openly on sale instead of being Psion specific. Sony would almost certainly have had a sole Japanese rights to PalmOs, leaving only linux left for them.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

Reply to this topicStart new topic
2 User(s) are reading this topic (2 Guests and 0 Anonymous Users)
0 Members:

 



RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 21st September 2014 - 02:09 AM