Wednesday, October 15, 2003

Tungsten E: terrific review from an end user

Tungsten E - Jeff Kirvin
The Tungsten E comes in plastic bubble packaging like the low end Zires rather than a cardboard box. Personally, I like this, since it's easier to see the actual unit and you don't have as much to lug home. The thinner packaging is made possible in part because the Tungsten E doesn't come with a cradle, or even the connector to use with a cradle. The bottom end of the E sports a standard USB "mini-B" type connector and a round DC power port. The port is a standard 5 volt/1 amp port, the same one used by many Samsung cell phones. While I'm sure the E will sell in sufficient numbers to spawn a line of chargers of its own, for now you can pick up chargers for the Samsung A460/A500 and use them with the E. I've got a Belkin car charger that works great. I use the car charger whenever possible, but I have to say that reports of poor battery life on the E are greatly exaggerated. I wasn't too impressed myself at first, but after setting the IR keyboard driver to auto-disable after five minutes of inactivity significantly improved my battery life. I get about 5.5-6 hours now, similar to other color devices with 900mAH batteries.

Since the Tungsten E power adaptor is a monster, most people will need something better.

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