Any rec for a PDA that's low-cost & can do WPA?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by fitinferno, Aug 20, 2005.

  1. fitinferno macrumors 6502

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    #1
    Basically, I have a Tungsten C. It's lovely, but it has a big problem in that it doesn't do WPA. With that becoming the security of choice, I've found that using WiFi from it is becoming less and less possible.

    Thus, I was wondering if anyone has any advice on what other PDAs are out there that will do this. I have some pretty tough requirements in addition to that, though. I am very anti PPC, so I would want one that is Linux or PalmOS. Clies are a big turn-off because of the fact they use Sony mem sticks only. And finally, a decent pricetag ($300 or less) is a necessity.

    Does anyone have any ideas on a PDA that could fit those requirements?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #2
    I'm also interested in the same, perhaps without the OS requirement. The lifedrive seems nice, although not in that pricetag range.... And the Axim x50v has gotten into that range a few times in the past 90 days with deals, though it doesn't meet your requirements for OS. And it seems very difficult to find out if handhelds support WPA.... :(
     
  3. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

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    #3
    I have been using Palm LifeDrive and it is working well with my wireless hub at home (and other WiFi hot spots). My home network uses WPA. It has BT and I can syn with my Ti PB to back up the data from LifeDrive. It's pricy; but, I think you will get what you pay for.
     
  4. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #4
    Thanks for the info! It's definitely comforting to know it has WPA. :) Do you surf with it at all? If so, how does it manage with the low screen resolution?
     
  5. YS2003 macrumors 68020

    YS2003

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    The screen res of LifeDrive is okay for a PDA. I can surf websites with LD and see the sites without any problem. Of course, not all the web sites are made for PDA; but some are made with PDA in mind as well. I can see my hotmail account without any problem. Very bright screen (I keep the brightness to 20 to 30% range and it is bright enough for me to view inside and outside my office). Also, you can carry decent amount of data on this thing as it has a small 2.5 inch hard drive (about 4 GB) and I keep some of back up files on LD from my work PC. It's also very easy to carry and I have the leather case from Spain (Piel Frama), which protects LD nicely. I can hold LD in one hand while driving (so, the size is very portable, even though some people complained LD is a little bigger than T5).
     
  6. fitinferno thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #6
    You definitely have a good point about finding out of the handheld has WPA support...the companies must really try to avoid telling people that info because they know it will put off the ones who actually put some thought into their pda purchase.
     
  7. fitinferno thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #7
    Glad to hear the LifeDrive is working out for you. It is very tempting...I'm giving my brother my iPod in December since I planned on getting a mini...but when I see things like this.

    It is very appealing to have the video and music capabilities. I can only imagine how cool it would be to watch the TV shows I record on the bus!

    More than the price, the thing that really puts me off it, though, is the fact that I KNOW the lifedrive is going to be updated to 6g soon...and then after that, maybe even 8 soon...
     
  8. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #8
    I suspect, given its price point, it will eventually get a VGA screen like the x50v too... although perhaps that's a squeeze for its form factor (it's footprint is smaller than other PDAs, right, even though it is thicker?)....
     
  9. fitinferno thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #9
    I'm not sure about the footprint...I think I've heard something like that...for all the things it does...it is incredibly small.

    VGA screens are nice, so hopefully what you suspect is true...I'm pretty sure I'll wind up waiting until December and then taking a look at what palm has to offer because then it will be decision time...palm or mini? Hmm...
     
  10. AstrosFan macrumors 6502

    AstrosFan

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    #10
    In the Palm family, as you know, the only handhelds with built-in WiFi are the Tungsten C, which you already have, and the LifeDrive.
    Sounds like the LD is compatible with WPA but s a bit higher than your price range.
    The other option would be to get another Palm handheld & the Palm WiFi card.
    Looking at the specs here I can't be 100% certain that it's compatible with WPA. It seems like it should be made similarly to their other WiFi capability, though (this may be wishful thinking).
    Unfortunatley, the WiFi card is a hefty $99 through Palm; perhaps cheaper through other vendors on-line?

    I have a Tungsten E2 which I find excellent - great syncing (via Bluetooth) with PB & iMac. I think you could get this for ~$200 online, so your total cost would be close to your desired $300.
    Also, right now on the Palm website, they are offering a free WiFi card with every T5 purchase - you could see if this offer extends to T5 purchases from anywhere & then you could probably get it for around $300.

    Hope this helps - good luck!
     
  11. fitinferno thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #11
    Thanks for the advice :) Unfortuantely, I'm almost positive (as I considered the option of palm + wifi card) that the card doesn't support WPA :( That T|E2 is a nice looking one, though, so it's really silly that palm feels the need to not bother w/WPA too much.

    This is what makes my requirements so near to impossible...PPC seems to be the standard now-a-days...
     
  12. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

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    #12
    I wonder...since you sound like a pro-Linux sort of person ... is anyone attempting to create a linux that would robustly run on PPC hardware, or is there just too much hardware diversity?

    I don't like PPC that much either, but .... yeah. I'm thinking of swallowing those concerns in this case.
     
  13. fitinferno thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #13
    The thought of running a Windows enabled pda next to my beautiful and wonderful Mac bothers me. It's a hard-knock life for people who don't like the PPC but want WPA WiFi :( I can't help but wonder when the days of WPA will end and I'll have more compatibility issues once I solve the current one...

    There are a few projects that work on getting linux onto PPC hardware and making it work well. One deals with the IPAQs (http://handhelds.org/familiar) and another deals with Toshibas (http://www.mnementh.co.uk/). Unfortunately, you're probably correct about the hardware diversity problem.

    Rumour has it, though, that Palm is working to make the LifeDrive linux compatible (which is nice, but I was fine w/the PalmOS to begin with...lol) (http://www.linuxdevices.com/news/NS5014657199.html).
     
  14. homerjward macrumors 68030

    homerjward

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    #14
    wrt the linux on ppc, sharp sells some things that are basically ppc's with linux iirc. zaurus is the name i think--but not sure about wpa support.
     
  15. fitinferno thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #15
    That is a decent thought. I'd dismissed the Zaurus series because it seemed they don't have any built-in wifi. But, I'm betting that out of the wide range of cf wifi cards out there, there must be one that supports WPA...at least, there's a better chance of finding that than ever finding an sd one...lol.

    Hmm...now I'm gonna go see how much a Zaurus sells for... :)
     

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