It’s no secret that small is the new big in the ever-shifting PC landscape, with more and more complex smartphones forcing industry veterans to hatch full-fledged computers the size of USB flash drives.
Granted, “full-fledged” is a bit of a stretch, as these tiny machines can technically carry out basic computing tasks while fumbling on advanced gaming, video editing and high-end multitasking in general.
What’s interesting is early evolution in this fledgling market niche isn’t curbed by conventional alliances and the competitiveness that typically characterizes giants like Intel or Microsoft. Otherwise, Redmond wouldn’t risk provoking Intel by partnering an Indian device manufacturer called iBall on the Splendo.
Unless, of course, both MS and their traditional Santa Clara-based pals deem the stick PC segment open turf for experiments and limited test runs at the moment. Either way, let’s welcome Compute Stick’s latest sub-$150 regional rival, which is unlikely to spread on the Western hemisphere anytime soon.
In India, the iBall Splendo will go on sale in July at the equivalent of roughly $140, including a mouse and keyboard. Not too shabby, given you also get quad-core Intel Atom power under the minuscule hood (no noisy fan), plus 2 GB RAM, 32 GB storage and Windows 8.1 software.
The pocketable desktop PC can transform your everyday TV set into an all-in-one computer via HDMI, and additionally, there are USB and micro USB ports, a microSD card slot, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity to go around.