E-TEN’s PDAs are always somewhat distinctive. When I reviewed the G500 with its built in GPS antenna back in May, a key design element was some piping around the front fascia that glows blue all the time the device is switched on.
Thankfully E-TEN has abandoned that particular characteristic with the M600+ which updates an earlier SIM supporting Windows Mobile 5.0 Pocket PC, the E-TEN M600.
By E-TEN’s own admission, the differences between the two devices are ‘modest’, and that’s what you’d expect from a pretty subtle change in name.
Visually there is almost nothing to choose between the two, with only the M600+ branding having replaced a rather more generic ‘Pocket PC’ on front of the older device (the eagle eyed among you will, at this point notice that the images accompanying this review are of the old model, but the branding really is the only visual difference).
The alterations are all under the hood, and they amount to a general upping of the specs to the point at which this connected Pocket PC has more of what current users demand. And after all, the older M600 was launched way back in December last year, so it was due for an update, right?
So, the E-TEN M600+ is built around Windows Mobile 5.0 for Pocket PC. It is powered by a Samsung S3C2440 processor running at 400MHz and this seemed perfectly up to the task during testing.
There is more than 180MB of free storage space thanks to the 256MB of Flash ROM that is installed. This is pretty generous as Windows Mobile 5.0 devices go, and you can boost the amount further with an SD card which sits in a slot in the top of the casing.
Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are both built in, and while there is no hardware button dedicated to controlling these, one of the many, many software extras E-TEN throws into this device is a Wireless Manager that allows you to turn both on and off and also manage your SIM. It is a shame infra red isn’t here too, but the presence of Wi-Fi opens up the possibility for Voice over IP calling, which might attract some companies installing IP based telephony.
Businesses can further smile when they learn that the E-TEN M600+ has support for Microsoft Direct Push. For ordinary consumers this is nothing to shout about. But if a company runs a network based on Microsoft Exchange Server, the E-TEN M600+ can become a mobile email device, receiving pushed messaging as well as contacts, tasks and other information.