France \ bPlan
Announced: January 19th, 2001
Price (preliminary): Unknown
The Eclipsis is an interesting device for the Amiga market. Unlike
the abandoned Smart Boy device, the Eclipsis will provide an AmigaOS compatible
operating system in a handheld unit. The exact specifications remain sketchy,
avoiding statements regarding the processing speed, memory and expansion capabilities.
Instead, Thendic France promote the Eclipsis as a device that can supplement
the users' existing activities and provide functionality that will attract the
The Thendic web site describes some of the features that it will provide:
- mobile telephony - The device will operate as a mobile phone, providing
advanced SMS, video and camera features. In a reaction to criticism of these
features as a pipe dream, Thendic have emphasized that mobile hardware is
only limited by available bandwidth rather than the device itself. Current
high-end devices in the mainstream market feature graphical hardware that
outperforms desktop display capabilities of a few years ago.
- Handheld games system - Promoting the use of a 'powerful graphics
chip', the Eclipsis is promoted as a capable games machine. A potential GameBoy
- desktop machine - An optional base station is promised that will
allow the use of a standard keyboard, as well as supplementing the device
with additional memory, processing power and expansion opportunities. A standard
TV or SVGA monitor can be used to output display.
Similar to several current developments in the mobile phone market, Thendic
are hinting at the possibility of several partnerships that will take the Eclipsis
into the business market. In particular, wireless service operators such as
Telekom, Orange and SFR have been mentioned as potential allies. Using a SIM,
fitted into a PCMCIA card, the Eclipsis will be upgradeable when the network
supports new advances. This will allow the use of GPRS, UTMS, etc. without replacing
Based upon existing statements, the Thendic business plan will follow a three
tier system, similar to mobile phone deals. Thendic will provide Eclipsis hardware
to mobile operators, who will sell the device through their distribution channels.
The main argument for using the Eclipsis, in comparison to other devices, is
its ability to provide high-end consumer features and content. Thendic will
handle the actual production and upgrades, while providing some of the end services
(such as GPS). They will also manage the developer network, providing additional
features over time. As a result, mobile operators are able to reduce the costs
providing unique features for the networks.
Out of the many hardware developments currently being produced for the Amiga,
the Eclipsis provides one of the most interesting. The device offers the ability
to run AmigaOS applications on a portable machine, while providing features
that will attract the mainstream.
Last Update: 1/9/2002