Sonys Hot Crossover PDA

Designed for organization and entertainment, the Sony Clié PEG-UX50 is in a class of its own.

Once again, Sony makes us reconsider what PDAs are all about. The Clié PEG-UX50 ($700 street), billed not as a PDA but as a PEO (personal entertainment organizer), combines a digital camera, an MP3 player, a thumb-style keyboard, and two flavors of wireless connectivity for entertainment and communications. The landscape screen—which makes the unit look like a doll-size laptop—really shows off Sonys superior interface for the Palm OS. Yet even with all its features and software, the question is: Should you spend $700 for a personal entertainment device? We vote yes.

Sony packs the UX50 with productivity, PIM, and entertainment software, with accompanying desktop software for data conversion and editing. We particularly like the PDAs—er, PEOs—image viewing and editing software, Clié Viewer. The utility displays both image and video files with accompanying photo-editing and photo-album software.

The 480-by-320 (also known as half-VGA) color TFT display proves quite good for viewing Web content using the included NetFront 3.0 browser. With the screen up, you can use the keyboard in the units miniature laptop configuration, or you can swivel the screen 180 degrees and fold it flat against the keyboard for PDA functions that dont require typing. Control keys along the edge of the case work well in either configuration. And despite the keyboard (and camera), the clamshell case weighs just 6 ounces (other Cliés top 10 ounces) and measures 0.7 by 4.1 by 3.4 inches—easily fitting in a pocket or bag.

For more details, read the full PC Magazine article.