- HP iPAQ h1940


The screen measures 3.5in and sports a resolution of 240 x 320 with a 16bit colour depth. In use the screen is excellent for such a small device. It’s not quite as clear or bright as my h5450 but it can be used comfortably in almost any environment. There are four levels of brightness for the backlight, but the brighter you set it the more it will drain the battery.

Below the screen are the standard Pocket PC control buttons. By default the four program buttons are linked to Calendar, Contacts, Inbox and Today, although they can all be reprogrammed. There’s also a four-way rocker pad with a select button in the centre. This is for navigation, but I for one tend to use the stylus most of the time.

The stylus is stored in a slot at the top right of the unit. Unlike my h5450 the stylus isn’t spring loaded and needs to be pulled out by the protruding hook. The stylus itself is rather small, but it does feel solid and comfortable in the hand. The metal shaft is a nice touch and I’d have liked a similar feature on the h5450 stylus.

At the top left of the case is the headphone socket. Unfortunately this is a 2.5mm socket so you won’t be able to plug a standard set of headphones into it. There is a 2.5mm to 3.5mm converter jack in the box, but it’s something else that you’d have to carry with you and hardly ideal. I understand that HP wanted to keep the h1940 small, but I doubt the a 3.5mm headphone socket would have made the unit too big.

Just above the screen in the centre is the power button. This is quite large and also doubles as a status indicator. When the unit is charging it flashes orange and when the charge is complete it lights up in solid orange. That’s not too much of a problem since you’re unlikely to be using the device while it’s charging. However, when you have Bluetooth activated, the power button flashes blue continually, which is somewhat distracting. My h5450 also flashes blue when Bluetooth is active, but the light is tiny by comparison to this one, even though the device itself is far larger.

At the top centre behind the power button is an SD slot. Here you can expand the storage capacity and transfer data to another device enabled with an SD slot. This is in fact an SDIO slot so it can be used for peripheral devices as well as plain memory cards.

On the left side of the case you’ll find an IrDA port and a quick activation button for the voice recorder. Like all the other quick access buttons, pressing this one will power the device on if it’s switched off at the time. The only feature on the right of the case is the release switch for the battery cover.

At the bottom there’s a proprietary connector that’s used for both USB connection and charging. Due to the entry-level nature of the h1940 there’s no docking cradle included in the box. What you do get is a USB synchronisation cable and a power adapter. The USB cable has a power socket that the power adapter connects to so that the device can charge while it’s also connected to the PC. The power adapter also comes with a converter to allow you to charge the iPAQ without needing the USB cable. Unfortunately you can’t charge the h1940 from the USB port like you can with the h5450.