Steve “Chippy” Paine: Ten Years Of Mobile Computing Blogging


When Microsoft teased Project Origami, he Believed.

And he’s gone on Believing for a decade now.

He’s nearly made the UMPC space into a career. He did an eBook for potential buyers. He also tried devices no one ever heard of from China, such as the SmartQ 7. He tempted me with an Archos 5. He used to hold almost-weekly live video chats. And he found some devices that were amazing for their time.

This is the past and present in three shots:




Samsung’s first UMPC with the new Huawei Mate 8 phone. The Huawei has a smaller battery but more CPU power and better battery life than the behemoth from Samsung.

Look at how thick it was:


It weighed over a pound. Samsung did two iterations. I don’t think either sold in any appreciable numbers, because they killed the project.

As usual, Microsoft had a vision before the technology was ready.

Chippy will strongly disagree, but it wasn’t until the iPad that Project Origami was realized as most people imagined it after seeing the Microsoft teaser video:

It’s difficult for anyone who didn’t live through that time to understand how excited that got everybody.

The reality was a bunch of underpowered and slow, thick, heavy devices burdened mostly with the standard Windows XP UI (and then Vista’s UI)! What a crushing disappointment. The prices from US$600 to US$1,000 didn’t help at all, either.

But Chippy kept on Believing. Times changed, his activities lessened (hardly any live video chats), but he’s kept at it and technology has finally caught up.

Congratulations on ten years, Steve!

The anniversary video:

10 years of ultra-mobile computing and THANK YOU! (Long.)


UMPC Portal

This entry was posted in Android, Other Hardware, Smartphones, Video, Windows. Bookmark the permalink.

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