Well when he writes “What the heck is an Ultra-Mobile PC (UMPC)?” the rest of the article illustrates the writer’s confusion. Perhaps he can be forgiven for this as he is reflecting the market place.
I think he casts too broad a net in considering many of the sub four-pound machines including the likes of the ASUS EiiPC4g. The original vision for the UMPC was a device that included a touch screen interface, running Windows Vista.
From Microsoft’s UMPC Site:
The UMPC offers a display of 4-7 inches and touch capabilities, all in a package that weighs less than 2 pounds. But don’t underestimate this small computer—it can run all of the same Windows Vista-compatible software you’re already familiar with.
Still, it is an interesting article in that it may be an indication of the general state of perception of tiny machines. But by including so many machines in the article, I think the author just adds to the confusion around the meaning of the term UMPC.
I just spent a solid 14 days with a Sony UX380CN – hammering away at it under every possible scenario I could imagine. For me, a touch-screen or stylus input of some kind is absolutely essential in a small machine. I will be writing about that experience in the next day or so.