by Anton Shilov
08/01/2013 | 11:42 PM
Dell, one of the largest suppliers of personal computers in the world, has begun to ship its credit-card-sized device that can turn any screen with an HDMI input into a personal computer running Google Android operating system to beta testers. The product should cost around $100 and will eventually compete with gadgets like Google’s Chromecast device.
Code-named project Ophelia, the device looks like a big USB drive, but it packs much more than just NAND flash storage. Project Ophelia functions as a multipurpose Citrix or VMware thin client, a web client for web-based apps or a stand-alone device for local apps and content. It includes the Android OS for access to thousands of apps in the Google App store. With Dell Wyse Cloud Client Manager software as a service, companies can manage permissions and access for Project Ophelia devices based on role, department and location. This enables users to securely access and share work applications, presentations and content when away from the office.
Dell’s Ophelia is powered by Rockchip RK3066 (two ARM Cortex-A9 cores clocked at up to 1.60GHz, Mali 400 graphics engine, memory controller, etc.) system-on-chip and is equipped with 1GB of RAM, NAND flash solid-state storage, microSD card slot, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity. The system runs Google Android 4.1 operating system and can be plugged to almost any display with HDMI or MHL ports, providing ultimate flexibility. The zero-battery Project Ophelia receives power through a monitor’s MHL port or separately via its own USB interface. No need to lug around extra batteries or charging equipment.
Project Ophelia is expected to cost around $100 and be commercially available sometimes during the next fiscal quarter, which runs from August through October, reports PCWorld.
Thanks to Google Android operating system, Dell’s Ophelia will be able to address consumers and allow them to turn their TVs into almost fully-fledged personal computers with media streaming and gaming capabilities. At the same time, thanks to support for Citrix or VMware thin client and Dell Wyse Cloud Client Manager software as a service, Ophelia can also become a solution for commercial companies looking to enable maximum flexibility for employees.
Whether or not Dell’s project Ophelia gains popularity is something completely unknown. But with the arrival of gadgets like Chromecast and Ophelia a trend on the market of ultra-portable systems is rather evident.