Could popularity in yet another laptop form factor be about to grow or is this simply the return of a golden oldie?
Fitting under laptop, ultraportable, netbook and smartbook could well be the new 'mBook M2' from UMID. The tiny UMPC (yes, that category could be making a comeback) has a tiny 4.8in 1024 x 600 resolution display, but will still run Windows 7.
This is because the mBook M2 essentially has the same horsepower as your average netbook with the choice of a 1.2GHz or 1.6GHz Atom CPUs along with 1GB RAM and a 1.3 megapixel webcam. The M2 also - arguably - sticks to the original netbook vision with a choice of 8GB to 64GB solid state drives and capacity can be augmented via a microSD card slot. Given the M2's role as an uber portable (I'm trademarking that just in case!) UMID has also wisely integrated 3G connectivity alongside WiFi.
Just like a MacBook Air (sarcasm alert) UMID has managed to find space for a single USB port and there's a VGA output as well. Clearly someone in the design team put their thinking cap on too since the ingenious positioning of an optical mouse to the right of the screen with left and right mouse buttons on the left are ideal if you consider how an M2 would be cradled in both hands. That said, we still await information on the all crucial battery life.
Prices for the lowest spec mBook M2 start at $499 (£312), but that only gets you a 1.2GHz Atom, 512MB RAM, an 8GB SDD, Windows XP and no webcam. Expect the full spec to run closer to $599 - $650, which obviously wades into netbook and even full blown laptop territory. Then again, could we have found the spiritual successor to OQO? Time will tell...