Pioneer diversifies range with rugged, mobile look

Pioneer diversifies range with rugged, mobile look

Builder moving away from traditional PCs

Pioneer Computers has launched a raft of new products that take the business even further away from the world of midi towers.

The two ruggedised notebooks, an in-car PC and an Ultra Mobile PC (UMPC), are priced between $1399 and $6999.

"I want the channel to at least look at what we're doing," managing director, Jeff Li, said. "There's plenty of margin in these kinds of items and, at that price, there's no competition, either."

Li said the two ruggedised notebooks - the DreamBook Tough A79 ($6999) and DreamBook Tough V10 ($5499) - will go head-to-head with the reigning ruggedised notebooks king, Panasonic.

"We're trying to release products that are really different to the traditional desktop midi tower market," he said. "That market will all but disappear in a few years time, and it's products like these that will lead for us."

The DreamVision Core Duo Mini PC/Car PC S63 (from $1399) is another example of Li's push away from traditional PC offerings, being a fan-less, noiseless computer system that can be built into vehicles. Due to the size of the system, it could also be used as an office PC, digital signage controller, thin client or for numerous other applications, he said.

Rounding out the offerings, the manufacturer will also be releasing the DreamBook Vista UMPC 770 ($1499), featuring a 7-inch touch screen and powered by VIA C7M Nano Processor 1.2GHz.

Li claimed Pioneer would have the cheapest offering in this category.

"Everyone else is up around $2000 or more," he said. "Of course, Microsoft wants UMPCs to be under $1000, but it will take time before we reach that point. Maybe next year."

A 5-inch version of the UMPC was also in the works and a couple of months away, Li added.

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